Thursday, 30 January 2014

Youth Conference

Edinburgh United Nations Youth Conference this Saturday!!! Can"t wait!! Will tell you more about this later ;)


Tuesday, 28 January 2014

The Breakfast Club, 12-16 Artillery Lane, London


I bought 'superfood' ready to eat salad from Tesco (£2), fried rice in some oil and Aromatic yellow salt, and grilled chicken in super hot pan. Yam.
INSPIRED. By The Breakfast Club, address above, webpage here. You haven't had breakfast in your life before trying them out.
The Finnish dark rye bread is something you just can't get anywhere else in the world, not even from Scandinavian Kitchen, which otherwise provides with nice products for those feeling homesick.
Avocado, Scottish Salmon, New York toasted bagel, Philadelphia, and rocket leaves (as always lol) with scrambled eggs. Can't say no more.
Berries are quite expensive in the winter season, but you can melt the cheap frozen ones in microwave for few seconds and then mix them with natural yoghurt (40p) to make your own 'berry yoghurt' ;)

How often do you cook home? We usually cook almost every day, although I don't enjoy it as much as I used to. That's because the kitchen is dirty all the time due to my 8 messy roommates. Even though anarchy should not mistakenly be associated with disorder, it is the only word so far I can find to describe the situation in our house. We have 'rules',when it comes to keeping clean, but in practise, no one gives a ******. I am soooo looking forward to moving out, sharing with less people, and finding my passion to slow, relaxing cooking again! My dream would be to have a huge kitchen full of light and space to have cozy evenings with friends...Maybe something like this?




Oh, and my petition is ready, however, I am still struggling with getting it sent to everyone's e-mail at school, due to privacy concerns...Your support is much appreciated, so here it is anyway if you could quickly click to sign. It only has 3 supporters so far, so maybe I should seriously try to promote it more. I don't want to give excuses, but lets just say it hasn't been the first thin on my to-do-list these few days though.


Hoping you got some inspiration,

Love, xx


Curriculum Vitae

How to write a simple CV that the employers will remember out of hundreds they get?

#1 Keep it simple!

#2 Be PROUD of yourself (this is especially for modest Scandinavian people), because if you are not, then who is? They don't know you, so you need to convince them you are the best person that has ever walked on earth. In one page.

#3 No 'real job' experience? Write down volunteering! It is always appreciated and shows you're active.

#4 It is not a bad idea having something different and cool in the 'interests' section; If you just put 'reading' or socializing, they don't really care. If you instead put something relevant, such as 'I like to keep myself fit, and share the joy of movement, therefore I play football and train the junior team occasionally' --> This first shows you are in good shape (and can carry heavy stuff, haha) and second shows you can teach others and have then some sort of team leading skills.
To make you feel better, I had 'I enjoy following media and keeping myself up to date by watching news daily' in my first CV. Like I was the only person on earth watching news...loool.

#5 You could have 1-3 different CVs, with different experiences for different types of jobs you are looking for. I don't have many because I used to work for an agency that recruited me to work pretty much everywhere from retail to restaurants and cafes, so it is already relevant thinking of the part time jobs I need now.

Here is my CV: (It looks a bit messy because the bullet points are not there, but I'm sure you can read it)


                                                            Rita Rasheed
                                  ****************************, E20BE London, United Kingdom
                                                                     Mobile: ************
                                              e-mail: ritarasheed@hotmail.com

Personal Statement
If you are aiming to hire a well-experienced, conscientious and dedicated employee as a part of your team, I would be delighted to have the chance to show my skills. The three years of working in department stores, catering business and within PR developed not only my team working and communication manners, but also relevant knowledge to work independently and flexibly when needed. I have a multicultural background which helps me to communicate with different people and understand their bases. As a worker I am both creative and discipline, and used to work hard for my goals. However, I also know the importance of asking for help when needed and helping out others whenever I can.

Key Skills & Achievements
·        I speak three languages fluently; Finnish, English and Kurdish. Moreover, I have the basic knowledge of Spanish and Swedish.
·        Excellent computer skills – I am writing a blog online about travelling and fashion, however I also manage Word, Excel, PowerPoint and several photo editing programs very well.
·         Full, clean driving license. Accordingly a Finnish Hygiene Proficiency Certificate.
·        Commendable organizing skills; having irregular timetables and sometimes many jobs at the same time has taught me to prioritize and arrange my own schedules.
·        During my three years in the special High School of Arts, I finished a Diploma in Contemporary Art and got elected to be the President of Students Union. I also attended a Scandinavian project which aimed to increase the interaction between several High Schools. Active participating was beneficial since I gained international connections and broaden my horizons. It also developed great management skills and tolerance towards stress.
·        Experience from working both independently and in various teams. Also self- developed PR-skills from organizing events like store openings, fashion shows and concerts for young people. I advertised and informed people about the events, and also held speeches and announced on the local radio for the campaigns. The work itself was hectic but gave me the joy of seeing my own creation tangibly. Nevertheless I managed to progress quickly even without previous experience.

Compact employment history
·        Personal Assistant - Winter 2012 and Summer 2013
Independent care work for two disabled people with different needs, in the summer 2013 I was replacing a nurse for four         weeks and took care of tasks like the customer’s medication, hygiene and house holding.  In winter 2012 I was a part-time worker for a private employer.
·        Staffpoint – 2011 until 2013
Part-time working in hotels, bars, restaurants, department stores and coffeehouses. The shifts were irregular and my work included everything from tourist guidance to learning how to make a proper Italian style espresso. Scandic Hotel and SK Entertainment Group were some of the biggest companies I worked for. I learned not only essential skills when it comes to customer serving and retail work in general, but furthermore independence when it came to quick decision making and working under pressure.
·        Cubus – Winter 2011-2012
Included strong team work within a Norwegian clothing brand. Working in the store built up skills in customer service and sales. Furthermore, as sales assistant my job was to give customers style advice, visualize the store, take responsibility of closing and check accountancy.

Education

·        The University Of Westminster, BA International Relations and Arabic – 2013 until 2016
·        Tiirismaa Upper Secondary School, Finnish High School Leaving Certificate with average grade of 8.5/10 and completed ‘Ylioppilastutkinto’ – degree corresponding British A-levels.

Interests
·        I enjoy street dancing and used to hold my own class for young girls to learn the basics. I also have a passion for travelling; seeing the world can sometimes teach more than any book will ever do.                                                                                          

                                                                                                                                      References are available on request.


There are also some sites that help you with writing a good CV, the one I used, by University of Kent, was here.


Love, xx

Sunday, 26 January 2014

Album




I got this as an one-year anniversary gift! One of the cutest gifts I've ever got. I did some Google investigation and apparently there are many competing sites that allow you to create your own album, some of which are Vistaprint, Smilebox, Blurb and Shutterfly. A great idea for valentines, maybe? ;)


Today was the most horrible Sunday ever. I therefore don't have energy to post anything more inspiring. However, we went to Tinseltown, a traditional American hamburger & milkshake place, and that made me feel a little better.

Tomorrow will be a better day, maybe. Oh, and I need to find a new job....again.

Hoping someone there had a greater day than I did.


Love, xx

Saturday, 25 January 2014

STRIKE ACTION, UK








I feel like now this is starting to look more like a fashion blog, haha. But it is nice to have different things in the blog every now and then, isn't it?
Yesterday I got off work 1am (the pubs in Covent Garden close quite early luckily, but if you are visiting London and thinking of staying out later, I would suggest going to Leicester Square or Soho.) and today I have cleaned the whole flat, had traditional breakfast, started a petition, and soon going to work again.
Wondering what petition?

Basically, in UK, the tuition fees have tripled since 2011, however I always thought that that money will then go directly to schools. This is not the case! Apparently, when tuition fees were raised, the ultimate idea was that they would go UP TO MAX 9000 per year, and the Liberal Democrats behind this (Outrageously stupid) idea thought that maybe only Oxford, Cambridge and few other Russel Group  Universities would charge this amount. THEY WERE WRONG. Every school now tries to get as much as they can, which is the 9000 pounds a year (with the exception of London Metropolitan, which didn't get the permission to charge that much) and the money goes....................to principals and chancellors! Not to our books, food, quality of library or whatever else you would think that benefits the students directly! And especially not to our teachers, those who are playing the key role in motivating us! In contrary, the teachers pay has FALLEN 13% since 2009. At the same time, principals average salary today is about 215,000 pounds a year! Typically UK has the biggest gaps in Europe between the very rich and the very poor, and you can still see the 'class' system here. But this makes me really angry because I am the one here paying back the rest of my life and still seeing unsatisfied teachers and experiencing cancelled seminars and lectures because of striking. Education should be a fundamental right not a privilege, but however since we are paying a lot, let us students get something back by at least having well-paid, motivated teachers.

This week there was a strike again, and therefore I decided to start a petition for justice. For some reason the page is not working yet, however there is another one you could sign here.

There is also a blog updating about these issues written by people from my school, you can access it here.


Love & Justice, xx

Wednesday, 22 January 2014

Brick Lane, London











Welcome to Brick Lane! Get off either at Aldgate East Tube station or Shoreditch High Street station. Alternatively, you could walk from Liverpool street. This stations and directions can be found from TFL webpage. 

I won't say anything else - but if you have already seen Big Ben and other Touristy attractions - then this is a place to go next. Street artists, Vintage lovers and Hipsters especially most welcome ;)


Love, xx

Tuesday, 21 January 2014

Beanice Gelato & Coffee, 98 Long Acre Covent Garden, London












At work (The Nags Head, Covent Garden) I sometimes get an unpaid break of half an hour, and use it to either eat or to walk around Covent Garden. One of the times I saw this cute place just opposite Starbucks, and decided to definitely go there whenever I'd have more time. If you are a friend of ice cream,  good coffee, smoothies and self-made crepes (a French thin pancake, Finnish equivalent would be 'lettu' and Swedish 'Pannkakor') this is a place to go! It is 4 pounds for a crepe with two fillings, I chose white chocolate and berries. Yum! And a big plus to decoration; it takes you back to 50's in the States. Also, there is a boutique that sells eyeglasses next door, and you'll get to see the coolest ones in a transparent wall. And don't worry about it being too crowded; I saw it both Saturday and Sunday evenings, and although Covent Garden is usually packed with tourists wandering around, I don't think they have found their way here yet ;)

Bon Apetit!


Love, xx

East End Thrift Store, Assembly Passage, London









What do you think about buying clothes second hand?
I think it is one of the greatest things to do - every piece of clothing has it's own 'story', and makes me think; who wore this before me? How old is this? Where has it been made? Not like I'd really ever find the answer, but at least I know the story is more interesting than knowing someone made the clothes in a sweatshop within dehumanized conditions and from there it ended up to an overpriced retail store. Second hand clothes are also the greenest choice - what a better form of recycling? Plus - the items are not something you'd see every other person wearing on the streets.

Therefore this post is dedicated to thrift shops; lets embrace them and support great fashion! In Finland, you can rent a table  easily from thrift shop owners, and at the end of the week, all the money you got from selling your clothes there is directly for YOU - only a small percentage of your sales will go to the owner of the place. However,  this kind of arrangement doesn't exist in UK as far as I am concerned, though you could sell stuff online on e-Bay etc. However, there are some cool places to go in London that are really cheap and not just expensive vintage..These include:

  The East End Thrift Shop
  The Absolute Vintage
  Blitz
  Many charity shops

...And many other good places around Mile End and Brick Lane. Oh, that is where they also have the best 24/7 bagel place around town, but I will write about that later :)

PS. East End Thrift Shop has this offer going on sometimes; Fill a bag of clothes for 5 pounds! Cool, huh?


Love, xx

Friday, 17 January 2014

Art Roch Hostel, 2 West Port, Edingburgh

I came to think of that hostel since we might be going back there in few weeks. A great chill area and a big kitchen, maybe not luxury but only 8 pounds a night, so can't complain. How do I know the place? Because I've stayed there before, during our eurotrip. That's when you buy a ticket to go around Europe unlimitedly by train for a month, and gain lifetime experience! I had my trip with three great friends who were all active when it came to booking tickets, working towards the trip and organizing everything. This post is for those who would also want to experience backpacking, and have an open mind for new experiences.


1. Travel off-season! It doesn't have to be mid winter, it is enough not to travel june-july when you'll end up sweating like crazy with a huge backpack and then trying to take 'fresh' photos. For Scandinavians; remember, the rest of Europe remains quite nice and warm even in October, and that's when we travelled.


2. Travel with ACTIVE people who are not too 'divas'. I know it sounds stupid, but hey, you've got to leave those high heels home (ok, I brought a pair myself but never ended up using them and it was the dumbest thing to bring them in a first place) and not expect to sleep in five-star hotels. In fact, not to even expect to sleep in hotels. You will sleep in HOSTELS. Yes, maybe in a dorm of 8 people, both boys and girls. If it sounds like too much, prepare to collect more money or consider something else instead of eurotripping. I said active because it is not nice if one person ends up being the 'group leader' and others are totally hopeless. For instance, if one gets lost, others don't have to panic that that person would starve to death or so.



3. A group of 3-5 people is good. We were 4, so that sometimes 2 went to do something and the other 2 something else. I know some people even go backpacking alone...I have travelled alone, but wouldn't do it for a whole month. However, this is a matter of taste. Of course you'll meet people on the way, probably even easier than in a group.



4. Get your tickets here.  Note that there are different solutions, for instance, we spent 7 days in Edingburgh, and 5 days in Berlin, and flew to/from both places,  so it made sense for us to get the ticket of travelling by train for 20 days, and it was even cheaper.




5. Plan, but not too much! If everything is pre-arranged, you might end up travelling as you're used to; moving like a robot from one place to another already knowing pretty much what you're going to do. Where is the good old adventure?? The best stories to tell from every journey are those which were not planned. I'd suggest to book accommodation for biggest, most touristy cities, and leave the smaller ones on the way for deciding there what to do. Most hostels  have people coming there all the time who literally just walk in and ask if they happen to have space. Again, if you travel off season, they will most likely have space. Also, plan the route; which places you want to go to, and on which time limits. This is important in order to make the most of your month.



6. Finally, the budget: I had 2200 euros when starting the trip, and still 600 when coming back. All depends on a. what cities do you do b. where you sleep c. what you eat. If you want to stay in nice hotels and eat outside in restaurants all the time, I would prepare 4000 euros or so. Prepare time for collecting the money: I got it in a month, but that was after making some 12 hour shifts at different places. Therefore, one and a half months should be enough. Depends again where you are from as well, because in Scandinavia incomes are quite good, whereas in eastern Europe or even Britain you'll earn a lot less with same amount of work.


7. Get the map out, call your friends, and set a deadline by which everything has to be booked and you'll go! You might want to also book some flights, Skyscanner is the best page to use for seeking good deals. However, in some cases, the slower you travel the cheaper. Alright, that's it for now. Stay safe, and good luck!!

Pics from our trip in October 2011, this one is from Mauerpark, one of the coolest places I've been to.


Love, xx



Thursday, 16 January 2014

Foot Locker, 109 Oxford St, London




Yeyyy! Airmax costs 58 pounds in Footlocker now! I never thought I could get my own pair since the prices have been around 100 or above, but now I could get them as well!I chose a black pair for practical reasons; I need black shoes to have in the pub that I work for, hahah. But maybe after my salary I will go for the red/silver ones as well. 

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Anyway, this post is about fresh fruits. A bit boring maybe but I know many people value them. Also, they are a lot nicer in UK than in Scandinavia, if you ask me. Yes, you can get them even if you were not from a tropical country, and no, it doesn't have to cost much. The best way here in UK to get some is to go for street markets, that usually start around 10 am and last until 5-6pm. You can get great offers just before the stalls are closing. I had a 3 hour gap in uni and already felt sick so I came home now and picked some fresh mangoes on the way (not literally, the most tropical place in London is probably the zoo or Hyde Park) from the market. Three for one pound, and they are perfect; a bit soft when pressing, and the color is green/red. More information about the cheap markets in East London  here. I know that you can also get some fruits from Portobello Road (stop at Notting Hill Gate) but they are not as cheap as the ones in east.




The backpack is from Primark, one of my all time favorites!



Also, yesterday me and my friend Alejandra booked ourselves to United Nations Association Youth Conference, that is held in Edinburgh 1st of February. There is going to be some UN staff all the way from New York, as well as some UK delegates of UN. Also, it is possible to network and get careers advice, so it might be beneficial for the future. I will definitely post about it here later on for those who might be interested.


                                                                         -

Ok, this post included everything from new shoes to mangoes and UN, but hopefully it was some nice reading. I will go back to uni now and then will have a dance class in Studio 68. Even though my nose is leaking and I keep sneezing which probably indicates that I shouldn't go, hahah. However, I am working the whole weekend so this would be my only chance to dance a bit. I don't know how some people manage to work more than 25 hours a week, do all the uni work and then have a LIFE. I work 16 hours and still feel like it is hard to find time for hobbies, friends etc. Maybe it is all a matter of how well organized you are.


Love, xx