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Loving iPods

Life before the iPod, people ran about with a stack of CDs age a chunky CD player that was about as heavy as a brick.

These days millions of us have an iPod whether it be a classic , shuffle , nano or touch. Now we walk around with slim , sleek, small objects. These days it’s not just about carrying the music in our pockets it’s about carrying the pictures,videos,games,contacts and carrying the time with us too.

Because our iPods are so small lots of us take  them everywhere with us , to work , to school , on a bus , on a train , to Barbados . It’s just so handy !

I am in awe of the ipod. I sit here listening to Coldplay on my speaker, the music comes from my blue ipod nano. It has a meer 382 songs on it and 220 photos, in ipod terms that’s nothing. My friend has so many songs , when she got her iPhone 4 it took hours to sync it.
But my ‘few’ songs would take hours to listen to all of it.

In summary I just want to thank the late Steve Jobs who made it possible for all of us to have our iPods .

Susie xx

Food Miles

Food miles’ is a term used to describe the distance which food has travelled before it reaches your home.  There is almost a certainty you have imported foods in your home and you probably don’t even know where it’s come from!  In fact imported food is at an all time high with 50% of our vegetables being imported and 95% of our fruit.  Being imported from thousands of miles away.  We need to find out why this is such an issue and what can we do to improve the situation.

What can we get out of having imported foods? In winter when the majority of crops don’t tend to grow our diet used to be of little variety but with imports we can have a larger range of goods.  Farmers in the UK can’t grow pineapples, bananas and grapes in mass production because it’s too cold here.  The good thing is that we can import those fruits from other countries.  Due to imported foods we can taste different cultures, for example the rice in an Indian curry can be imported, the spices can be imported so that we can eat Indian food with (see across) leaving the country.  And generally imported food is cheaper than locally produced foodstuffs and with the economy the way it is ever corner needs to be cut.

Because of us the farmers abroad are employed; they can bring home a steady wage to their families and especially to farmers in less economically developed countries this is hugely important.  They might get more business abroad as there might be more demand for their foodstuffs abroad.  Also due to us the food industry can be a huge job market.

There are numerous problems to food miles too.  Because local food is more expensive people are less likely to buy the goods that the farmers in the UK have put so much effort, time and money into.  Festivals like the harvest festival which is a festival celebrated around the autumn equinox which celebrates a successful years harvest are not as significant Because we can import all these lovely foods from different cultures we are losing a bit of our own culture.  Also buying imported food becomes a habit, a person will go up to a shelf filled with strawberries, one of the boxes might have Scottish strawberries, one of the others might have strawberries from Mexico.  The person might have bought Mexican strawberries through the winter and so automatically picks the Mexican ones even though they have flown 6000 miles.

And there are so many benefits to local food for a start it could potentially be more nutritious.  For example spinach that has been freshly picked and eaten within 24 hours after harvest contains 90% more Vitamin C than spinach eaten over 24 hours of picking.  We know that it was produced at high hygiene standards.  63% of 22 people thought that local food tasted better than imported food.

The importers in less economically developed countries hardly get any money, most of the money we pay for our mangoes go to the big supermarkets like Tesco.  Some money goes to those who’ve transported it from Israel to your home.  But the people who have created the very existence of the mango get the least money, it’s terrible!  There is also huge pressure on the supplying countries to produced these vast amounts of food if there was an inconvenience which meant that the food was unable to reach it’s destination the farmers wouldn’t be able to take any money home to their families.


Perhaps one of the strongest arguments against food miles is that it causes so much environmental damage annually.  Only 1% of our food is transported by air which you might thing is good because air transport causes so much carbon emissions but that measly 1% causes 10% of all the emissions related to food miles!  Most of the transport used uses oil, a fossil fuel which emits carbon dioxide into the atmosphere.  The foodstuffs have to be packaged so that they don’t go of 60% of our household waste is made up of that food packaging.  And due to the pressure on the supplying countries it has meant they have destroyed habitats and homes to animals and trees.

Food miles is a very complexed issue which we some need to solve.  Personally I think we should reduce food miles but we should not try to get rid of it, after all the farmers in less Economically developed countries need us!  We should encourage a higher wage to those famers and we should be encouraged to eat our local produce when we go to the supermarket.  Whether they do it by putting all the local produce by the entrance or whether they put a little tab telling us that we should buy the Scottish strawberries.  In summary we need to learn more about where our food comes from!

from Susie xx

comment below, on your page or email me at italkblog@yahoo.co.uk

Saving our planet

What do you do to try and stop global warming? We all feel a tiny bit of guilt when we think of our lights sitting left on in our homes but how many of us actually try to stop it?We love our dear planet in it’s summer glory, winter elegance, spring beauty and autumn joy, if it weren’t for our planet we would all be dead. But what about that time , a time where our planet will be flooded because of the damage to the ozone layer, our ancestors or maybe even the younger generation of today will be left to face an extreme situation.

I’m not going to tell you to change oyur lifestyle dramatically because I’m pretty sure your happy the way things are so here are a few tips I use on a general day to day basis on how to save my planet.

  • Switch off your lights.When it’s summer and you have enough light coming through the windows do you need them on. It’s not a hard task and once you get into a habit it comes naturally.
  • Take out your plugs. Of course you don’t want to have to plug in your oven every time you use it but if you don’t use your CD player or your iPod dock all the time then take the plug out. Don’t just switch the switch off because did you know power can still get through so unplug it only 2 secs more effort for a nicer world <3
  • Use roll on deoderant. At least try it  because the spray stuff completely makes holes in the ozone and that’s not good. If you can’t use roll on, try not to over excessively spray it!
  • Don’t leave your phone to power over night. I have trouble with this one because I want to have it when I go out in the evening and when I wake up in the morning and then of course I have to have it for school. When your watching TV just plug it in the nearest socket or charge it whilst your having your evening meal. Or charge it when your doing your admin (it’s probably not best for someone to distract you whilst your working.
  • Try to have more eco travel. Have you ever considered walking to school or to work? If walking is not an option then what about a bus? Either way it means you(or your parent) don’t have to drive !
  • Local food. You don’t have to check all your food from the weekly shop to find the origin but if you see carrots from your country or carrots from  China, pick the ones from your country.

These are simple small little things but they do make an impact, we are a huge movement and we can save our planet by doing small things. Susie xx

Comment below , on your page or at italkblog@yahoo.co.uk

 

 

Wasps

Wasps, horrible creatures with wings aren’t they?I used to fear them but now I just pure hate them. I have never been stung by a wasp but I imagine it would be painful because it’s not like sticking a pin in your leg , it’s like putting a slightly venomous pin in your leg. And usually a wasp sting is unjustified unlike a bee sting which kills the bee and so usually bees only do it as a last resort whereas wasps sting anyone or anything.

I am telling you all this because I have had a very funny encounter with wasps lately. My friend gave me some sweets and I didn’t really like them,they were okay but they had fallen all out my bag and got dirty. I was tidying up and I had these sweets and I didn’t know what to do with them so without thinking about it I put them on my window ledge because my window was open at the time later I shut the window forgetting they were out there. A few days later I was undoing the curtains and I noticed a few wasps eating these sweets I’d left out a lot of sweets and there were hardly any left!

 They were fighting over these sweets and were acting like they were glued to the sweets. It was quite scary, I wanted to check whether the window was closed properly because I didn’t want wasps inside. I wondered how long it would take them to finish them and so through out the day i mentally checked

a) the amount of sweet left

and

b) the number of wasps at one time

At one point I counted 7 wasps outside my window also I noted that a wasp had died for some of it becacause I saw this little adomen ( and if you don’t know what part the abdomen is,here’s a diagram )

By the next morning all the sweets were gone and considering they were eating food the same size as their whole body they were pretty fast! You’d think they’d get sick of it and give up.  So wasps may be very ugly, very creepy , whatever but no one can deny that they aren’t impressive…

How did I do on this piece let me know below, on your page or at italkblog@yahoo.co.uk Please note how I have taken advice and it’s an easy colour to read and will be from now on. What are your thoughts on wasps ? Have you ever been stung by one? And what do you think about my wasp tempting?

Susie xx

The Weird Sweet Theory Ramble

I was told this story a while ago,I don’t know where the story teller got the story from or anything but…

These scientists got tons of 3/4 year olds and sat each of them at a table with a plate containing a sweet. The scientists told the kids that if they didn’t eat the sweets whilst they were away,they would get another.Some of the kids ate the sweet,others didn’t. The ones that didn’t were given as promised a second sweet and the scientist said again if they didn’t eat the sweets whilst the scientists were gone they would get a third and so the cycle continued until the scientist said they could eat their sweets.

When the kids had grown up the scientist review each childs succession in life and found the children obeyed and didn’t eat the sweets fared better than those who ate the sweets immidiately.

This is where my question comes.Are the kids who do underage drinking,smoking and sex the ones who eat the sweets? The kids who eat the sweets don’t wait until they’re allowed to,and the kids who do things underage don’t wait until they’re allowed to. There is a sort of desperation to grow up.I know at my school people smoke and drink when it’s not leagal.In the UK you have to be 16 before you can drink and18 to 21 until you can buy drink.You  have to be 18 before you can smoke and 16 before you can have sex.

Okay so I decided to try the sweet theory with my little sister and her friend they aren’t exactly toddlers more like 9/10 years old. So I gave it to them saying if you don’t eat this I’ll give you another one,I came back half an hour later and they had eaten them. I’m going to be careful and examine how my sister turns out.

How did I do in this peice?Comment below or on your page

Susie xx

Players in a glass-backed squash court

Image via Wikipedia

Squash!

For those of you who think I’m talking about juice or about the verb to squash,i’m definetly not talking about either. I’m talking about the sport squash. Squash is like tennis, it’s a racquet sport with 2 players and the ball has to get in between certain lines but squash is played against a wall,the ball when you hit it before it’s warmed up is like a stone and it’s a lot faster than tennis. I’m talking really fast,the amount of times when I’ve run ino walls because I’ve been running too fast after the ball.

 Usually you see these weird sports and you think ‘how on earth do they get involved in that?’  I don’t know what made me want to play,I don’t even know if at the start I wanted to play. But I do remember when and where I started playing.It was the summer holidays of 2009 and me and my dad,who had once been a regular squash player went down to a sports center to play.My sister had been doing a sports course there and we thought we could drop her off,play squash and then pick her up.  I walked into the court and realised I knew absolutely nothing about the sport,not a peep.My dad was a good teacher (after all that’s his proffesion) and he was always a lot less degrading than my mum who points out every little mistake I make when she’s listening to me playing my instument. We learnt slow that first week,I couldn’t throtle the ball,instead I weakly hit it off the wall and I spent forever trying to learn how to serve.Infact the easiest part was learning the rules like when you serve you have to stand in the service box and hit the ball above the service line and ensure that it comes past the red line which is infront of the service box. My first week hadn’t been enough to make it a regular routine around half a year later when I was 11 my mum invited my two friends and my sister to play squash with us. It lasted about 5 months,it was a great way to catch up with my friends but they weren’t very good at it and didn’t see the same joy I saw in it.In the end we were busy with various commitments and it ended.

International squash singles court, as specifi...

Image via Wikipedia

A double yellow squash ball.

Squash ball,the two dots on it shows how hard the ball is to hit.

It was 9  months until I played regularly again. Hockey was over for the season and that left my Tuesdays free also my grandparents had bought me a squash racquet of my own but that was way back in November. What really sealed my fate was that my dad had got a squash racquer for his birthday. Getting back on the court was nothing special each week I was improving,serving was getting better,skill was getting better. I was able to hit it harder and harder and harder. My improvisation didn’t really hit me until June 2011. At school we had begun playing rounders. I wasn’t looking forward to it,usually the only thing that I contributed to my team was a dominating left hand to suprise the other team.Usually I missed the ball,usually when I hit the ball I hit it into the open hands of a fielder,usually when fielding I could never catch the ball. This year I hit the ball each and every time,the ball was a lot easier to hit than a squash ball but I continued to hit the ball like it was a squash ball sending it,far,far away.This year I could catch a ball,I could throw a ball . I realised that I was good at squash. 

When I hit the squash ball with the fiercest strength it is like I have batted away all that I was angry about.When I run for it I feel I can run round the globe for that annoying ball.It is tough,sometimes my eyes go funny and I start to see blue and purple emerging from that white,white wall.Sometimes I feel like I could faint. But the satisfaction of hitting it of seeing your opponent slow when they know that they can’t hit the ball back,it’s amazing. I haven’nt beaten either of my parents yet,I have been close though and maybe one day…

Comment below or on your page How did I do on this piece? Susie xx 

Keeping a Diary

Keeping a diary is not hard,essentially it’s like updating your Facebook status except longer.Leaving 20 minutes to an a hour at the end of each day surely shouldn’t be a problem.I keep a diary and I have been for 2 years now.I find that I can look back and remember what I did this time last year,what I was thinking.A diary is not a chore it’s a joy I have written about 500 pages through all of my diaries and never found it a boring chore.

People say you have to hide your diary,keep it well locked up and hidden otherwise people could read it.I appreciate that no one will be able to read it but when I have been secretive with diaries it always ends badly.The unlocking of padlocks,receiving from hiding place and writing in secret always leads to a dramatic downfall because I can’t be bothered to do all this just to write about an average day or even worse I am desperate to write about my exciting day but alas I have to go through three padlocks before I can write.

Tips and Advice

Do tell people you are writing a diary,even be boastful.Not only will this encourage them to write but then people will know of your diary’s existence. The benefit of this is that your daughter might be able to read what you were like at her age.

Don’t padlock it or hide it or anything.A good notebook for a diary cost £2.29 at WHSmith.It is easy to flick through and easy to pick up and write.Trust your friends and family to resist temptation and tell them that you refuse to be responsible if they look through it.

Start easy.My first diary I was writing on average a A6 page per day.It had plain pages for doodling and for increasing font sizes.I maybe wrote every other day.If you start easy you can get harder as you go along.

Commitment.I’ll admit that there was a period in no 2 when my commitment to the project lacked.Don’t feel you have to write but do be committed to your Diary.The best way to solve lack of commitment is to set yourself a goal, maybe setting yourself a target to write so much per day. Or getting to a certain number of pages eg.100 whatever you choose have a bit of determination.

Keep going.Don’t think that just because you’ve finished no1 it’s time to stop.Keep going!I’ve got to no3 now writing 60 pages per month,writing everyday and Diary writing has miracles.

Up Points

I have improved handwriting

I have improved spelling

I have better writing skills

I have improved grammar

I can reflect on the past

I can share honest thoughts and secrets

I find it easier to paragraph and it’s easier to make lists (like this one)

Down Points

Time consuming

Little by little I have become more and more descriptive and this has helped me not just when I’m writing creatively but when I’m writing here on italk.It’s helped me put thoughts onto paper.Keeping a diary is a joy and I hope to keep on writing for many years to come.Have you ever kept a diary?Do you keep a diary?What are your thoughts on my writing?Comment below or on your page.

Susie xx


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Me-Susie

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The world is a beautiful place filled with beautiful ambitious people. Follow your dreams and remember that you need to work hard to achieve them. When you do be grateful for getting there and those who helped you get there. It doesn't matter where you come from or what you look like nothing can stop you following your dreams!

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