Fav Five: Films By Female Directors

Today is International Womens Day, and to celebrate I’ve compiled a list of my 5 favourite films that are directed by women.

I have to say that when I sat down to write this I thought it would be pretty straight forward, but it was so hard.

In all honestly I tend not to always take note of a director unless it’s a film I’ve really enjoyed and want to see if they have anything else I might enjoy, and this is a habit I’ve only picked up in the last few years. So although I did have a number of films in mind, when I looked into more films directed by women I found more and more films I wanted to include.

I could have easily turned this into a top 20, but I’ve stuck to 5 that have really stuck out for me. Films I not only love, but films that have shaped my love for film, and tell a story I can relate to.

First up is, Wasp (2003) directed by Andrea Arnold.

Wasp is a short film I watched late one night when I should have been asleep. I had flicked onto film 4 I think and it had just started. For years I didn’t know what it was called and it was unknown to all I spoke to about it, but it was a film that really stuck with me. I was completely struck by the rawness of it, it’s observation on life and how it was just left to play out rather than have all the extras of Hollywood. It was this film that gave me that love for the slower paced films, that look more at the characters and relationships and life. Films that aren’t really about anything, but are about everything. Her work is something I continue to enjoy.

Secondly is, Thirteen (2003) directed by Catherine Hardwicke.

I think I would have been about 14 when I first watched this film, and I think the reason I liked this film so much when I first saw it was because it indulged those rebellious feelings of my early teens. I was starting to think more about boys, and I had more freedom to see friends away from adults, and with that comes temptations and experimenting, and although Thirteen was darker, it had all those things. It’s a film I watch now and it takes me straight back to all those thoughts and feelings of that time.

Thirdly is, The Diary of a Teenage Girl (2015) directed by Marielle Heller.

I really like The Diary of a Teenage Girl because it’s a story about a teenage girl finding and exploring her sexuality. The rights, the wrongs, the mistakes and the exploitation of that time. It’s a narrative we don’t not only not see, but hear all that often, and I think it’s done so well here. It’s not portrayed negatively, or in a way to make a girl feel bad about exploring her sexuality, even within the context of the story. I think it’s an important film for not just teens but women, because our sexuality isn’t always shown as something we can and do have, as something that we have control of, and is for us and our enjoyment.

We then have, Riding in Cars with Boys (2001) directed by Penny Marshall.

I rented this film on video from the independent local video shop when I was probably 13/14 because I was, and still am a huge fan of Drew Barrymore. It’s a film I watch every couple of years and gain new love and new understanding from. I think I see a lot of my mum in Drew’s character. My mum and dad had an amazing relationship, but they were young and as my dad passed when I was just 8, my brother 6, she became a single mum. I remember seeing through this film how hard it was to be a young single parent, even though my mum made it look so easy. It was seeing this that gave me so much more admiration for my mum, all she had been through and the strength she always showed.

And lastly, The Holiday (2006) directed by Nancy Meyers.

I finish this list with a film i Iove just because it makes me happy and fills me with joy. I’m not a massive fan of romantic comedies, they have to lean more on the comedic side rather than the romantic for me to not just glaze over. But this film is a film I just adore. I think the slightly undercurrent theme of film throughout it probably has a bit to do with it, my goal in life is still to have a film collection like Cameron Diaz’s character. But I just love the characters. I love their stories and I love the story as a whole. I watch it every Christmas and will continue to forever.

If you’re looking for more suggestions of films directed by women, I’ve compiled a list you can find HERE

Tell me, what’s some of your favourite film directed by women? Do you have something i should add to my list?

Love, C x

365 day clothes buying ban, a update

Before I was set to start my clothing ban I thought I’d have a mad buying spree in the Christmas and Boxing Day sales, this wasn’t the case. In fact as I was scrolling through I just kept thinking, buying this is me just buying for the sake of buying. I bought 2 jumpers and a rugby jersey type thing, but that was it.

I must have already been in the none buying mind set.

I expected January to be pretty easy because it’s only 4 weeks in, and who needs clothes in January? No one does anything, and it’s to cold to wear anything but jumpers. And for the most part it was easy, except for this one day.

About half way through the month I tried on the rugby jersey I had bought for the first time because I honestly thought it’d fit fine.

It didn’t.

It fit, just not how I expected and how I wanted it to.

This instantly put me in a bad mood because its something that’s wrapped up in a whole bunch of other thoughts and feelings I have, and that day it just really got to me.

Although I’m not necessarily overly expressive with my fashion choices, and I don’t follow trends and such, clothes help me feel a little bit more “normal” bare with me.

Having such a life changing accident at 16 and trying to jump back into life at 17, I just wanted to grab onto any kind of my normality. I wanted to feel like me still, feel like an average 17 year old, like all my friends, and the one way I thought I could do that was with my clothes.

But things where different now, it wasn’t as easy as just putting on a top, it fit different, it looked different.

It took me a long time to wrestle with all the different feelings of insecurities and frustrations, and through that time of finding the clothes that felt right, I worked through my insecurities and I worked through accepting my disability, and finding the new me.

I’m now comfortable and happy enough that if something doesn’t fit or look right I just take it off and send it back.

But because I was the top was something I had no second thought about, because it should of been fine, it took me right back to that place where my favourite top from before the accident looked ridiculous when I tried it after.

It really had me down for most of the day, all I wanted to do was get rid of the top, along with everything in my wardrobe and buy new stuff. Start afresh, throw away those feelings and new things will make me feel better.

Then I thought no. Yeah, momentarily you might feel better, but you have no problem with your entire wardrobe, just get rid of the one top, feel those feelings for a moment, then remember how far you have come.

By the next day I felt much better, and in a way I’m grateful for this shopping ban, because it allowed me a moment to think through everything instead of looking for a quick fix of gratification.

Still, only 313 days to go!

Love, C x

Let’s chat

Who’d have thought that in 2019 I’d be sat here writing a post about the right way to talk to someone.

I mean I know it’s so much easier to converse via our fingers and phones, I have to admit I’d much rather email someone than phone them, but I think I can confidently say I know how to speak to people, a stranger politely without causing offence.

I mean I might feel a little nervous or anxious about it, depending on the situation. But it’s nerves and anxiety that come from worrying that they won’t like me, think I’m weird or awkward.

I don’t think, this person is tall I might say the wrong thing.

I don’t think, this person is Jewish I may offend them.

I don’t think, this person is Asian I’m going to say something to anger them.

I think here’s a person and I have this to say.

Yet according to a survey I saw pop up on twitter, two thirds of people are to scared or nervous to talk to someone with a disability. Many saying they wouldn’t want to offend or say the wrong thing.

And if you do a quick google search you’ll find articles 5, 3 years old that say the same thing.

I mean surly by now we’ve got this covered.

Because really, it’s not that deep.

All you really have to do is stick to the polite conversation you use with any stranger until you get to know them, and you can’t really go that wrong.

Because yes, my disability is a difference I have to you, but your eye colour, your height and what town you’re from is a difference you have to me.

We all have a wealth of differences that if approached in some kinda way could cause offence, so why are we still so scared of disability?

And yes, you can get it wrong, so wrong, just like you could with anyone. Yet we seem to have learnt those no no’s, we instinctively know the wrong things to say in accordance to many different things. So why is it we’ve learnt the do’s and don’ts when it comes to everything else but not with disability?

I’m sure there are many, very clever answers to these questions, but honestly isn’t it just common sense?

Just be nice.

Talk to me like the adult that I am, because I’m pretty sure you wouldn’t talk to any other 27 year old like a 7 year old, well except maybe that one friend that thinks Brexit means we’re going to lose all the trees 😉

Don’t ask personal or intrusive questions, because I’m not asking how you go to the bathroom within 5 minutes of meeting you so why are you asking me. You don’t have the right to know my full life story or medical history just because I’m disabled, it’s information that’ll be offered to you when I’m happy to share, or will come as a natural progression.

Lastly I’d say, don’t get blindsided by disability, because yes my disability is a part of me, but there is literally so, so, so much more. Let’s talk film, music, Real Housewives of Beverly Hills and how amazing Chrissy Teigan is.

So, come talk to me people, I don’t bite 🙂

Love, C x

P.S I know we aren’t all perfect in saying the right thing, i know people can often jump to stereotypes or over used anecdotes when it comes to race, religion, sexuality, height, hair colour, weight or even accents. I also know people can be intentionally hurtful and offensive when it comes to all of the above and more, but that’s not what I’m addressing. I’m looking at people that mean well and do want to be nice.

It just strikes me that 5 years ago there was a campaign run by a disability charity that was teaching people how to talk to disabled people, there’s official training explaining how to talk to disabled people, when we are all just people, but still I go to a doctors appointment and have the doctor spend the whole appointment talking to my mum instead of me.

Chloes Cajun Sausage & Peppers inspired by Chrissy Teigen

I can’t be the only one that excitingly buys a cookbook, drools all over the wonderful things I’m going to “make” then puts it on a shelf for three years.

Well this year is a year of goals and with that comes the ‘I’m going to cook something out off a cookbook at least once a week’ goal, my 52 week challenge so to speak. And I say me, I’m the voice, occasional stirrer and smasher of things. I can’t quite get super stuck in due to my disability, but I’m very much involved in the process, my mum will tell you that.

So far it’s been going pretty well, it gets me out of my room and in the kitchen, but most importantly it’s brought delicious food.

We’ve had Thai fish cakes and peanut sauce with sweet potato fries from Chrissy Teigens Cravings, Hungry for more, I highly recommend this and Lime and saffron chicken with Persian rice from The Saffron Tales so far.

I have however bent the rules slightly and last week made an inspired by dish.

It was again from Chrissy Teigen, but this time her first book. The recipe was Cajun Sausage, Peppers and Cabbage. At first we were just going to do it without the cabbage, because honestly I wasn’t feeling it, but then we wanted some carbs and then we couldn’t find all the right ingredients. Instead of giving up we improvised and ended up with the most delicious, warming bowl of yumminess. Honestly it’s so good.

So I give to you:

Chloes Cajun Sausage & Peppers inspired by Chrissy Teigen.

Disclaimer: When making this we did kinda just chuck everything in so if you want more potato or less pepper, you do you.

Recipe

500g of Smoked Sausage that’s ready to eat – we used a polish sausage kiełbasa ślaska, alternately you could use Mattessons smoked sausage.

200g of Ready to eat Chorizo

3 Potatoes

3 Peppers, I used red and green but all colours are welcome

1 Large Onion

235ml of Chicken stock

2 teaspoon of Cajun spices

2 tablespoons of Minced garlic

Oil for frying around 3 tablespoons

Directions

Firstly chop everything.

Chop the sausage and chorizo into chunks, the potatoes into smallish cubes so the cook quickly, and the peppers into long strips and the onion into half moons.

In your biggest frying pan heat the oil on a medium to high heat, add the sausage, chorizo and potato and cook for around 5 minutes.

Add the onion, pepper, garlic and Cajun seasoning and cook until they start to soften, around 10 minutes.

Turn down the heat to medium low and add the chicken stock.

Let simmer for around 20 minutes.

Now serve in a big bowl, and if you’re anything like me you will have a slice of crusty bread with butter waiting to mop up all the juices.

Oh, my mouth is watering now.

If you give this a go let me know.

Enjoy, C x

A Clothes Buying Ban

In May I told myself I was going to clear out my wardrobe, in November I actually did.

The clear out was well over due. I’d hoarded so many things that didn’t fit just right so I’d never wear them. I had far to many of those old super cozy jumpers that were now ten years old and so tatty you’d never leave the house with it on, but you just couldn’t possibly throw it away. As well as a pile of stuff that had needed to go for a good year I just couldn’t be bothered let go.

It was hard, but I was ruthless. I still miss my red jumper. I managed to get two big bags for charity and another that needed to be thrown.

I have to say, as hard as it was I felt almost cleansed afterwards. It was really satisfactory having enough room to hang everything that needed hanging, and enough space to properly organise the piles of tshirst and many, many jumpers I had.

Yet even after such a big clear out I still had a full wardrobe of clothes and it made me think. Here I am with all these clothes and 1. I still wear the same thing over and over, and 2. I still probably spend a good £400 on clothes a year, without much thought. But why? Why am I doing this. It’s such a waste, both in money and in terms of the actual clothes. And honestly I have no real excuse. I’m not hugely into fashion, I’m mostly into warmth, which is why half of my clothes are jumpers. If anything I have a slight love hate relationship with clothes. It can be difficult to dress with the chair. I like things to be a certain way so I feel comfortable, which can often mean things just look off or don’t fit right. I had one incident where I bought a top that had ruffles at the bottom, I looked like a twelve year old wearing their princess fancy dress outfit, not my intend look for afternoon drinks with friends.

So, I thought, that’s it, I’m not going to buy clothes for a whole year. Once decided I told a couple of people, but as packages would arrive every other week still in the run up to Christmas not many people had much faith in me.

I set my goal for 2019, for the whole year I’m not going to buy any clothes, except for a couple of exceptions.

Underwear doesn’t count, I mean that’s a given right?

Because I’m ragged about a lot with my jeans they’re prone to being ripped and over stretched, so I’m allowed to buy new jeans but only to replace a pair if it’s needed.

I don’t have great temperature control and I really feel the cold, so although I have a lot of jumpers, I always wear a long sleeve top or vest, these to can get well worn so I can replace them.

Lastly, if I get a voucher for my birthday, which is in March, I can use that because I don’t want it to go to waste, but realistically it’s only going to be enough for a top.

I quite looking forward to this little challenge, because I feel like no one thinks I can do it, and I do kinda enjoy an I told you so. I’m also doing it to make me properly utilise my wardrobe, mix things up a bit, layer differently, have a little more fun and experimentation with all the stuff I already own. And lastly to save money, spend it on fun things or even just be sensible and pay of my credit card, and hey, maybe even try and cut down on my carbon footprint.

What do you think? Think I can do it? I’ll keep you updated.

Love, C x

Third time lucky?

In the spirit of fallen All Star Queens, I’m baaaack. Back for my final showdown, to lip sync blog for my life and see where it takes me.

And for all you folk that are unaware of the great Ru Paul’s drag race, I’m basically back to give this whole thing another go.

For those that have followed my earlier attempts at blogging, hiya!

Thanks for sticking with me and coming back.

And if you are new to me, or my blogging, hiya to you too!

Thanks for stopping by.

I hope you all decide to stay because I think this time around I’ve figured out how to fill this space in a way that properly fits, and I think hope you are going to like it.

I always find new hellos a little awkward, don’t you? So I’m just going to dive right in like this blog is 3 years old and we are all best friends, because I’ve written this hello, it’s me, again post about 12 times already.

That’s a much better title huh?

Anyway, I’m rambling because I’m nervous. I’ll see you soon.

Love, C x