What is the The Bermuda Triangle?
The Bermuda Triangle refers to a triangle region in the middle of the North Atlantic Ocean where many ships and aircrafts have simply vanished with no real explanation. It’s vertices are said to be between Miami, San Juan, Puerto Rico and Bermuda, covering 500,000 square miles of ocean..a lot of ocean. The Bermuda triangle is one of the most heavily travelled shipping lanes in the world, and yet what happens to anyone and anything that disappears remains unknown. These cases date back to Christopher Columbus times, where in 1492 he first reported strange lights and strange compass readings. Since then, there has been numerous unsolved disappearances.
There are so many conspiracy theories behind the Bermuda Triangle, from science to mythology. Regardless of the cause, I find the Bermuda Triangle extremely fascinating. Therefore, I am going to be discussing some of the most interesting cases from the Bermuda Triangle and some of my favourite theories. Enjoy ♡
1918 - USS Cyclops (AC-4)
One of the most famous ships to disappear into the Bermuda Triangle was the USS Cyclops in 1918. Sometime after March 4th 1918, this extremely large ship (542 ft long) with over 300 passengers on board vanished without a single trace. The USS Cyclops was sailing towards Baltimore; and after departing from a shortstop in the island of Barbados the ship and the 300+ passengers were never seen again. With even no debris left behind, this enormous ship had vanished completely.
1945 - Flight 19
Flight 19 refers to the collective of five TBM Avenger bombers who vanished when flying over the Atlantic on December 5th 1945. According to schedule they were due to go east from Florida Naval for 120 miles, north for 73 miles and finally a 120 mile route to return to the naval base. However, they never came back. Not only were no traces ever discovered; but when two rescue Martin Mariner aircrafts with a 13 man crew went to search for the flights, one of the Martin Mariners itself never returned and also disappeared without a trace.
1967 - Witchcraft
On December 22nd 1967, the Witchcraft cabin cruiser departed from Miami with captain Dan Burack and friend, Father Patrick Horgan. This was a 23-foot luxury yacht, setting off to enjoy the view of Miami’s Christmas lights. Just one mile from offshore the coast guard received a call from Burack; a warning that his ship had been hit and that they needed help towing to the shore, however said there was no substantial damage. The coast guard set off immediately, taking only 19 minutes to arrived. Upon arrival he found absolutely nothing. Not only were Witchcraft and the gentleman not there, but there was absolutely no signs of any ships having ever been present there previously. Of course, we know there was a ship there literally 19 minutes ago. Even more bizarre is that this particular type of cruiser is essentially unsinkable. As for Burack and Horgan, there was substantial life-saving equipment on board...so what happened?
2017 - Mitsubishi MU-2B-40
Finally, I wanted to include a more recent one to highlight unexplained incidents of the Bermuda Triangle are still happening today. On May 15th 2017 a small private aircraft called the Mitsubishi MU-2B-40 was flying from Puerto Rico to South Florida. At around 2:10pm the air traffic control at Miami lost radar with the aircraft for unknown reasons. Despite absolutely no weather warnings or anything out of the ordinary, this plane and the four passengers on board simply vanished...still to this day it has never been found.
I couldn’t possibly discuss Bermuda Triangle conspiracy theories without including one of the most popular theories for any unexplained event- aliens. A very, very popular theory about the Bermuda Triangle is that the disappearances are caused by alien abductions. I personally have no doubt that there are other life forms; so whilst I don’t really believe this theory, I will say it probably isn’t as crazy as it may initially sound. Many people believe that in order to learn more about human life, aliens around the Bermuda Triangle literally abduct people out of thin air. This is said to explain why there is never any evidence, traces or remains. I mentioned earlier that reports of the Bermuda Triangle date back to Christopher Columbus time, and some theorists believe what Columbus saw at this time may have been a UFO. An entry into his log written October 11th, 1492 read ““The land was first seen by a sailor called Rodrigo de Triana, although the Admiral at ten o’clock that evening standing on the quarter-deck saw a light, but so small a body that he could not affirm it to be land; calling to Pero Gutierrez, groom of the King’s wardrobe, he told him he saw a light, and bid him look that way, which he did and saw it.” “The Admiral again perceived it once or twice, appearing like the light of a wax candle moving up and down, which some thought an indication of land. But the Admiral held it for certain that land was not near…”. Explorers believe that this sighting was in fact a UFO. Although I do think this theory may be a little too fantasy, I would absolutely love to believe in an alien explanation. What are your thoughts?
This second theory is another one that I don’t necessarily believe in however I do find it extremely fascinating; and that is the theory of Atlantis. The theory goes that there is a “lost city” known as Atlantis dating back to the Ice Age. It is said that Atlantis disappeared in 8016 BC when the Ice Age ended in Finland and the ice melted away. Atlantis was said to be controlled by crystals; therefore people believe that this city may have sunk to right beneath the Bermuda Triangle, and that spontaneous bursts of energy and the strength from these crystals are causing these unexplainable disappearances. I think this is the most interesting theory as it actually adds to the mystery in that we still don’t know whether Atlantis was ever a real location in the first place. What do you think?
The Gulf Stream
This theory I found particularly interesting because it has been suggested as an explanation of the Witchcraft case I discussed earlier. The Gulf Stream is an ocean current originating in the Gulf of Mexico. It moves through Florida into the North Atlantic and then passes through the Bermuda Triangle. The reason this is a theory for the missing ships/planes/people is that the Gulf Stream is essentially a river with warm water within an ocean which can easily carry floating objects down its flow. Therefore any ships coming into engine troubles, or planes making water landings, can be carried away in an instant. People believe this is what happened to the Witchcraft cruiser after coming into trouble with the hit.
Whilst our knowledge of the ocean is extremely limited, something we do know is that very large waves can appear suddenly at any time, even in the calmest of seas. These waves are said to be up to 30m high and extremely capable of taking ships within moments. They can be so strong that one wave caused the largest offshore platform, the Ocean Ranger, to completely capsize in 1982. However, one flaw I find with this theory is that these waves are extremely rare. It therefore seems too coincidental to me to say that these rare waves are occurring all within the same area...don’t you think?
Finally, the theory I think I believe in the most. Some theorists believe disappearances within the Bermuda Triangle are due to intense micro-bursts. To my understanding, micro-bursts are sudden currents of wind from storm clouds; and these winds can exceed 120mph. These can be observed by weather satellites, and evidence from this suggests the unusual cloud formations observed around the Bermuda Triangle are in fact micro-bursts. Microbursts arguably aren’t as rare as some of the other theories discussed; though still uncommon, micro-bursts have definitely been known to cause planes to crash before. It therefore follows that as the ones around the Bermuda Triangle are significantly stronger, this could cause significantly more planes to disappear. Tying into the rogue wave theory, it is said that these micro-bursts can contribute to waves, forming waves over 40ft high, hence why things appear to simply “vanish”.
Whilst I would love to discover evidence for a lost city or alien abductions, I do personally believe some of the more scientific theories slightly more in this case. However something I find really interesting about the Bermuda Triangle is that there are so many theories that make sense; and yet at the same time we truly have no idea what causes so many disappearances - literally without a trace.
Thank you so much for reading. As usual, I would absolutely love to hear your thoughts on what theories you believe, and whether there are any more theories that I didn’t discuss that you are particularly interested in.
Hello! You have found my hidden blog post - recipes for a cosy day. I mentioned in my "self love club" post that one of the things I really like to do when in need of a de-stress is to bake. I decided to compile a short post of some of my favourite recipes that I learnt as a child, which I think are perfect for a cosy, rainy day, or when you just might need some freshly baked goods to bring a little bit of happiness back into your day. Enjoy!
This is the perfect recipe for a Sunday afternoon when your banana's are starting to look a little too ripe. It's easy, smells delicious and tastes even better.
TANYA BURR'S COOKIES
Tanya Burr's cookies are my absolute favourite. Although this isn't my "go-to" recipe as there are quite a few ingredients involved, this is definitely the best recipe for when you just want that little more goodness (or "not-so-goodness" haha!)
PRIMARY SCHOOL SPONGE
This is a recipe that my mum taught me when I was tiny and I will never ever use any other! Whenever people try this cake they always say it takes them back to primary school days, so if that is something you'd like to recreate then this may be the perfect recipe for you.
Thank you so much for reading. I really hope you can enjoy my top 3 recipes for a cosy day. I would absolutely love to be tagged in any photos of your baking, whether it's these recipes or favourites of your own. Thank you again for reading and I hope you have a really lovely day!
♡ The following tips are mostly for when you might just be feeling a little bit overwhelmed, as opposed to feeling affected by mental health difficulties. I completely appreciate how frustrating these sorts of tips may be in a response to mental illness - and whilst these tips may be useful, if you need further support than self care that is completely okay; you really deserve to feel supported ♡
Caring for others is SO important, but do you know what else is? Caring for YOURSELF!
I tell people all the time to take the time to focus on themselves, self love and self care; however I admit I am someone who is not very good at doing that myself. I absolutely love being on it 24/7 so sometimes taking the time to relax doesn’t come naturally to me, and I am finding more and more people who are exactly the same. So I decided to compile a few tips of SIMPLE ways to wind down when things might be getting just a little bit too much for you - and these are things that even us busy bee’s can follow. Be kind to yourself and always remember to be a member of your own self love club - enjoy! ♡
Something that I have very recently gotten into is penpalling, which I can already say I absolutely LOVE. I have always loved writing a good old fashioned letter, yet beyond enjoyment I also believe they can be really, really useful. Penpalling is very therapeutic to me; not only do I love spending the time to handwrite a letter, doodle on the envelope and walk it to a postbox, but it is also really refreshing to understand somebody through exchanges of their own self disclosure as opposed to a collection of assumptions from social media. Alternatively, writing a single letter that you perhaps don’t expect a reply to can be really lovely too. This might be a “thinking of you” letter to somebody you want to catch up with (again, I think this is a much nicer way than just texting them), a letter of encouragement if you can see somebody is going through a tough time, OR you could simply write a letter to yourself as a really great way of understanding your own feelings. There are so many benefits to letter writing and I definitely think people should do it more often; so whether you are needing a little pick me up or not, why not give this a go?
The Power of Now
Reading in general is a really great form of self care - and often you don’t consciously realise the benefits. Not only is it a great way to temporarily switch off from your busy thoughts by stepping into somebody else's world, but I find reading before bed can dramatically improve the quality of my sleep. So of course reading in general is something I would always recommend to anyone. However, if you are perhaps going through a particularly anxious stage, feeling a little lost or just needing a boost of comfort and direction in your life I would thoroughly recommend “The Power of Now” by Eckhart Tolle. It is a really inspiring book that teaches you the importance of focusing on the now, and not worrying about things that have already happened or fears about the future. My dad always says “there’s nothing to worry about until there is something to worry about”, and I think this book really embodies that. I’d absolutely love to know your thoughts if you do decide to read this!
Clean Space, Clean Mind
The phrase “clean space, clean mind” seems cliche, however it resonates with me so, so much. Whenever I find myself feeling a little bit stressed, distracted or just not quite right I like to take everything right back to the beginning. I will start off my jumping into the bath and giving myself a complete pamper session - hair washing, exfoliating and using all my absolute favourite products. I will take off any makeup and give my skin some TLC, so that I feel completely fresh. I will then repeat this cleansing process but on my surroundings - I will tidy and clean everything. For me, the process of cleaning itself is extremely therapeutic and the end product is very beneficial for my mood. I will then work on cleaning my mind - this includes writing out absolutely EVERYTHING I need to do (even things as simple as buying more washing up liquid). This is a really useful way of seeing everything jumbled in my mind right in front of my eyes, and then I will allocate tasks to each day. I like to transfer this into my agenda; life tip, if you don’t own an agenda, you need one! I put absolutely everything into mine as a good way of dividing my time and easily spotting when I may be overworking myself. I am very much considering getting a “passion planner” too, so if you are on the lookout for an agenda this may be a good place to start. After this cleanse of everything, I find myself feeling a lot better.
If you are in need of a little pick me up, BAKE. A. CAKE. Even if you can’t bake, bake. I think baking is an extremely relaxing activity. Following the instructions and experiencing all the different smells and textures of the ingredients is such a good way to switch off your mind. And at the end of it, your kitchen smells heavenly and you have some sweet treats (or you have an excuse to run to the shop to buy some replacement sweet treats if yours didn’t quite work out haha!). I have loved baking since I was tiny, so I decided to compile a mini post of some of my favourite, most comforting recipes from growing up. You can read that one here (a blog post hidden inside a blog post, I clearly cannot be TAMED). If you do bake anything from this post, let me know!
Find your happy place
This one maybe isn’t the quickest pick me up, or maybe for some it will be, but something that I think is really important is to find your happy place. A place where you know you will always feel calm, content and most of all free whenever you are there. For me this is by the sea, and in particular Brighton. I absolutely love Brighton, and I know whenever I am there I will feel care free and comforted. Being by the sea in general is when I am at my absolute happiest. I don’t live near the sea, so of course I can’t always be there when I would like to be, however I compromise by listening to sea sounds and imagining myself back in my happy place. This can be such an instant anxiety relief, so I would definitely recommend finding your happy place and knowing that will always be a solution in some shape or form whenever you may need it. Where’s your happy place?
And as a final little point, I wanted to include a link from the Childline website. Although my audience are mostly above the Childline age, I find that some of the advice pages we refer to when speaking to young people are actually invaluable for so many people, regardless of age - one of my favourites is this one here. As well as this, we often speak to young people about podcasts and apps and they seem to be extremely useful. Some good ones are: “Headspace”, “Calm” and Fearne Cotton’s “Happy Place”.
Thank you so much for reading! I really hope some of these tips can help you wind down when you need to. If you have anymore tips that I didn’t mention please feel free to share them below so we can all help each other - I would love that! Hope you have a really nice day,
♡ What's better than Lush bath bombs? Making your OWN Lush bath bombs, of course! ♡
This morning I had a really fun time at Lush (Nottingham) making my very own butterball. Not only is this one of my all time favourites, but I have been interested in the behind the scenes of Lush for a very long time - so this was the perfect opportunity to get involved.
If you are a Lush fan I am sure you will be familiar with the "Butterball" as it is a classic product; however for those who don't know, Lush butterballs are a gorgeous cocoa butter scented bath bomb. They are super moisturising, gentle and just a really nice product for when you or your skin are in need of a little TLC. I was really interested to learn that the butterball is made with ylang ylang oil which is used in aromatherapy to treat anxiety and depression, and can also be used to relax the nervous system. Even before knowing this I definitely found the butterball was one of the products I would always reach for when I needed to relax, so I definitely agree and would recommend this product to anyone.
Now, onto the experience. Making my own bath bomb was really, really fun. I absolutely loved how hands on we were allowed to be; following just a little direction we were given gloves and began mixing the ingredients to create the formula ourselves. It was very relaxing and smelt amazing. The staff walked us through things step by step, supporting us in making, moulding and perfecting our products. By the end of it they looked just like the "real thing". As a really lovely finishing touch we then were given some dusting powder to take away any effects of wearing gloves and to leave our hands feeling silky smooth.
Overall, I absolutely loved this event. However, I must say that a huge part of this positive experience was down to the staff. I have visited Lush stores in many different cities and above all the Nottingham Lush staff are always so, so lovely. I love going into Lush when I have a bit of spare time as their product demonstrations are great - I am forever leaving with one arm feeling baby soft! Nonetheless, if you are in a rush or maybe feel anxious being approached so much, I definitely feel that the Nottingham staff are the best for being considerate, friendly and consistently making your visit a positive experience tailored just for you. 10/10 from me guys!
Thank you so much for reading. I would absolutely love to hear your thoughts - have/would you ever like to make your own Lush bath bomb, and if so which one? Thank you for reading and I hope you have a lovely day,
June and Jennifer Gibbons, later known as “The Silent Twins”, were born 11th April 1963 in Aden, Yemen. Growing up the twins had an inseparable bond. They went through absolutely everything together and were both very late to speaking; their main communication was through noises as they knew only around three or four words by the time they started school. The twins first started school in Devon after moving to the UK, where racism was a huge issue. Due to the twins barbadian background they were severely bullied, and quickly became very isolated because of this. The twins refused to speak to anyone (even their family), make eye contact with anyone, and seemed to create what could only be described as a “secret language”. That is, they would only speak to each other through very high pitched noises or very fast talking that only they could understand. This isolation carried through to the extent the twins refused to learn to read or write at school. Whilst this was concerning for the teachers, June and Jennifer’s parents believed it was nothing to worry about because they would grow out of it - they didn’t. The family moved again to Haverfordwest in Wales, where sadly the racism only worsened. The twins were bullied to such an extent that they were dismissed five minutes early every day from school so that they could get a head start on their journey home, because the bullying was so bad.
As seen in many twins, June and Jennifer were extremely synchronised. If June fell off a horse, Jennifer would fall off a horse and vice versa. This level of synchrony was arguably beyond the “norm” for twins and this was hugely noticeable to John Reed, a man who came to the twins’ school for vaccinations. He described the twins behaviour as almost trance like. When he gave the girls their vaccinations neither of them even flinched; they just stood there, lifeless. The school nurse reported this behaviour as through her increasing interest in the twins she, and the rest of the teachers, had noticed a lot of unusual behaviour from the girls. This resulted in June and Jennifer being taken to Haverfordwest Withybush Hospital in February 1977 for examination, and then transferred to a boarding school called East Gate Special Education Centre. The girls were sent here with purposeful intentions of trying to create two separate identities, therefore whilst Jennifer remained at Eastgate, June was sent to St David’s Adolescent Unit 30 miles away. This decision was extremely detrimental to the twins well being.
June and Jennifer literally became catatonic. They refused to eat, move or essentially do anything until they were reunited. On their sixteenth birthday the girls were finally reunited and were sent home. Here things did not improve at all. Despite being in the same house, June and Jennifer would never see their family. If they wanted to watch the television they would pass a note through the door to their family and then the family would have to leave the door ajar so that they could sit in the hallway and watch the tv through the door. To keep themselves occupied the girls wrote diaries about their lives and crime novels. They were extremely excited about this and decided to go self published, with huge aspirations of making it big. The response was very very limited and this had a huge effect on them. June and Jennifer began leaving their rooms but only ever to commit crimes, do drugs, or hurt each other. They turned to theft and arson because, as June wrote, “No friends. Nothing else to do. Nothing to fill the cold hour.” The girls were arrested for one instance of arson and were sent to a remand centre. They carried on writing their diaries, however the girls could not stand the sight of each other here. Their diary entries quickly escalated into multiple accounts about wanting to kill each other.
The twins hatred for each other kept growing and growing, until eventually they were sent to maximum security. Here, their behaviour became extremely unusual. One day June would starve herself whilst Jennifer would completely over indulge, and then the next day they would swap over. Eerily, even when the girls were at other ends of the hospital and therefore unable to see each other, they would often be found completely frozen in the exact same position as each other. One day when a journalist who visited often came to see the girls, Jennifer completely out of the blue said “I am going to have to die...because we have decided”. The journalist was understandably completely taken aback by this, however her best understanding was that the twins had decided that one of them would have to give up their life so that the other could begin to live a normal and free life. The twins had decided that this day would be the day they were transferred to another clinic.
In March 1993 at the age of 31 June and Jennifer were transferred to the clinic. When they arrived Jennifer was completely unresponsive, and tragically passed away. This was exactly the day that the twins had planned for Jennifer to die, however results of the autopsy showed that Jennifer died from completely natural causes. There was absolutely no intervention from either of the girls; they decided on the date and through natural causes Jennifer actually did give up her life. On Jennifer’s headstone June had written a poem that read “We were once two, we two made one, we no more two, through life be one. Rest in peace”.
What is a Mandela Effect?
The Mandela Effect earned its name from an incredible amount of people holding clear memories of Nelson Mandela passing away whilst incarcerated, to the point many can vividly recall a televised funeral. Why is this odd? Nelson Mandela was released from prison 11th February 1990; he died 5th December 2013. Therefore why do SO many people share memories of his death and funeral twenty three years prior? Every year more and more shared memories of events that never happened, or things that never existed, are being discovered. They call these Mandela Effects.
There are many theories behind the cause of Mandela Effects, with many believing it is the result of a parallel universe or government cover-ups. Regardless of the cause, Mandela Effects can be truly fascinating. Therefore, I am going to be discussing my top 10 mind blowing Mandela Effects. Enjoy♡
10. Looney Toons
90’s babies. If I was to tell you “Looney Toons” was actually spelt “Looney Tunes” would you believe me? I, along with many other people, certainly would not; however it turns out it has always been “Looney Tunes”. Not only do most people have clear memories of “Looney Toons”, but that spelling would make a lot more sense; toons = cartoons. Did we all remember the wrong spelling, or was there actually a change in reality?
9. Forrest Gump
You don’t need to have seen Forrest Gump to know the iconic line “life is like a box of chocolates - you never know what you’re gonna get”. However, it turns out none of us really know the line as the script actually says “life was like a box of chocolates”. Honestly, this line doesn’t even make sense to me; and with so many people reciting it so clearly as “is”, is it really possible that we all misheard it?
8. Barbie Girl - Aqua
Aqua’s “Barbie Girl” is the song of many people’s childhoods; I am sure we have all heard it countless of times growing up so we would all know the words - “I’m a barbie girl in a barbie world” right? Wrong. The actual lyrics are “I’m a barbie girl in THE barbie world”. I have an insane memory for lyrics, yet never in my life have I sung, or heard anybody else sing, “THE barbie world” - yet if you listen to the original song you will realise that is the way it’s always been. What in “the’ world?
7. Monopoly Man
I am sure almost everyone has fond (or perhaps not so fond) memories of playing Monopoly. Whilst the game itself truly divides families, the biggest divider is the debate about whether the Monopoly man had a monocle - which he did not. I would say there is no evidence to suggest he ever did, however the sheer amount of people who dressed up as the Monopoly man with a monocle blows my mind and says otherwise. What do you remember?
6. Mirror Mirror on the Wall
This Mandela Effect will always blow my mind as Snow White is one of my all time favourite movies in the world. There is a famous scene in Snow White where the Evil Queen looks into the mirror on the wall and asks “Mirror mirror on the wall, who is the fairest one of all?” Except, she doesn’t say this at all. Instead, the Evil Queen has always said “Magic mirror on the wall”. I have honestly loved this film since I was about three years old and no matter how often I say the “new’ line out loud it just does not sound right to me in the slightest. Watch it here and let me know what you think.
5. Bare Necessities
Again, as a huge Disney lover, I really struggle to accept this Mandela Effect. I want you to fill in the missing lyric from the Jungle Book’s “Bare Necessities” - “wherever I wander, wherever I roam, I couldn’t be ____ of my big home”. Did you say “fonder?” Probably, as does every lyric website or video I can find. However, when you listen back to the song it’s actually just “found”. I think this sounds SO odd and so very incomplete, yet after checking Youtube versions, Spotify versions, the lyric has always been “found”.
4. We are the Champions - Queen
On the topic of “misremembered” lyrics, let’s discuss Queen’s “We are the Champions”. What do we all belt in the final chorus - “No time for losers cause we are the champions, of the world” right? Wrong! The song has never ended with “of the world”. You can listen to original versions, live versions and you will find they have NEVER ended the song with those lyrics. Yet so many of us sing them. In fact, I think it sounds so odd hearing the song without that ending, it ends so...abruptly. I must mention that Queen do in fact sing the words “of the world”, however it is in the middle and not at all where we all seem to sing it. Listen to it again and wait for the ending...it just feels wrong, right?
3. Sex in the City
This is one of the most common mistakes people make, to the point google automatically redirects people searching for the wrong title. The show has never been called “Sex in the City” but in fact has always been “Sex and the City”. This particular Mandela Effect has a lot of “evidence” to suggest we all knew it as Sex in the City before; from merchandise to sitcom references, from award ceremonies to social media posts. I would really recommend watching these two videos as the amount of “Sex in the City” references is insane.
2. “Luke, I am your father”
Even those who aren’t big fans of Star Wars know the iconic line where Darth Vader tells Luke Skywalker that he is his father. “Luke, I am your father” right? An astonishing amount of people recite the line that exact way, however if you watch back the clip here you will realise that line is never, and has never been, said. The actual line is “No, I am your father.” This line is nowhere near as catchy and it does not register right in a lot of people’s minds - including James Earl Jones, the actual actor who played Darth Vader himself!
1. “Woaaah, Mona Lisa”.
(Can anybody else not read the words “Mona Lisa” without bursting into song?).
And finally, The Mona Lisa. This painting by Leonardo da Vinci has been described as "the best known, the most visited, the most written about, the most sung about, the most parodied work of art in the world". An amazing amount of people recall Mona Lisa to be somewhat emotionless; a very very slight smile in the corner of the mouth and nothing more than that. So what if I told you that Mona Lisa is actually smiling in every photo you will ever find of the painting now? The reason this Mandela Effect stands out to me so much is because the Mona Lisa was studied for DECADES for her “enigmatic smile” - the mystery of whether she is smiling or not. However looking at the painting as we see it now there is no doubt that she has a smile. If the Mona Lisa has always been smiling as much as she is in the photos we see today, why would this have been studied so profusely by professionals? Did the Mona Lisa really change right before our eyes?
And that concludes my top 10 favourite Mandela Effects. I really hope you enjoyed this post. Whether these are Mandela Effects or simply mistaken memories, I think we can all agree it is fascinating how many of us share these vivid accounts of things that never really existed.
Thank you so much for reading! I would love to hear your thoughts on Mandela Effects, and if there are any that particularly interest you please feel free to discuss them on the comments.
♡ Happy New Year! ♡
I hope everyone has had a really lovely start to 2019. I decided to take a little step back from blogging/Instagram for the first few days of the new year, however I am back to share my blogging plans and aspirations for 2019...and what better way to discuss plans than over a piece of cake.
Bakerdays very, very kindly sent me the most delicious letterbox cake personalised with my blog name and Mickey Mouse; the most appropriate design for this Disney loving blogger. What they perhaps didn’t know is that I have the biggest sweet tooth in the world, so they were sending their product to a TOUGH critic. However, being 100% honest, it tasted absolutely delicious.
Whilst “bakerdays” also offer small, medium and large cakes, I am most excited about their letterbox cakes which is what they sent to me. Despite being handled by postal services, the cake was perfectly fresh with absolutely no damage to the product. The cake was beautifully designed and arrived in a lovely tin that I will no doubt be re-using. There are endless design options on their website; and if there isn’t one that takes your fancy there is also the option to personalise your cake just the way you like it. I tried the traditional sponge cake however “bakerdays” also offer chocolate chip, lemon drizzle, fruit, gluten wheat free and dairy free options. The cake was light, very tasty and had exactly the right amount of icing. Speaking specifically about the letterbox size, I really think if you are wishing to celebrate somebody’s special day but maybe can’t be with them, sending a “bakerdays” cake would be the loveliest gift. And now, as I cut myself my second slice of the evening, I will take you through my blogging plans and aspirations for 2019...
♡ Increasing posts
In 2019 I am committing to posting more frequent blog posts. I aim to post an unsolved mystery fortnightly, with other posts in between cases. I would love to commit to a blogging schedule however due to the sheer amount of research behind my unsolved mystery posts I feel I need to trial this when I am back at university before making any promises..but it is certainly on my mind.
♡ Expanding content
I describe coc0chanelblogs as an “unsolved mysteries & lifestyle” blog and this will not be changing. However my favourite posts to write are unsolved mysteries as I have such a huge interest in them so I will be expanding my content to more of my biggest interests; including conspiracy theories, paranormal activity and general mysterious phenomena. For those who are not as interested in these areas I can assure you lifestyle and creativity will still be very much incorporated into my blog. I hope whoever visits my blog can leave feeling inspired by something in some way.
♡ Social media engagement
I started my blogging Instagram (@coc0chanelblogs) towards the end of 2018 and it was the best decision. I absolutely love connecting with other bloggers and feeling like a part of the blogging community, so in 2019 I am definitely going to be dedicating time to Instagram engagement. I will also dedicate my time to understanding the beauty of Pinterest - this is a very new platform to me so any tips would be really appreciated.
Ultimately, I adore new year and I cannot wait to see where coc0chanelblogs goes in 2019. I am living this year with a kind heart, a fierce mind and a brave spirit...and a tummy filled with cake.
Thank you so much for reading! I would love to hear about your aspirations for 2019 and any thoughts or feedback about the plans I have for my blog. I wish you all a very happy new year.
P.s If anybody has any Instagrams and/or Pinterests that need some loving please do feel free to leave links below! ♡
Christmas lovers, this one's for you. Yesterday I visited Winter Wonderland in Hyde Park for the very first time and it was a Christmas dream come true. It can be a very busy place at a very busy time of year so I decided to compile my top ten tips and tricks to make the most of your visit. I hope this can be of use to anybody who is thinking of going - it is a wonderful place that I would recommend to anybody. Enjoy!♡
1. Pre-book your attractions
You can pre-book most attractions here and I would definitely recommend this. Not only will it save the queues, but it is a really good way to manage your money as you can clearly see what everything will add up to.
2. Set yourself a budget
In keeping with managing money, I would really recommend setting yourself a budget for the day. Although contactless payment is accepted in most places around the festive village, we withdrew cash beforehand so we knew exactly what we wanted to spend. Contrary to popular belief, Winter Wonderland is not actually *that* expensive - if you do it right. Entry is free. The markets are beautiful and there is a great variety of stalls - if you really wanted to save money, you could still have a lovely time walking around the markets with a hot chocolate spending only around £3. Food and drink might seem quite expensive, however it is exactly what you’d expect to spend at something like Winter Wonderland. For example, I had a really delicious waffle with chocolate, cream and banana which cost £6.50 - and it was WORTH it. Winter Wonderland is only really expensive if you visit multiple attractions and fairground rides - so setting a budget and deciding what you REALLY would like to be can make the day a lot cheaper and still really enjoyable.
3. Getting There
Winter Wonderland is held in Hyde Park, accessible by many different routes. The nearest tube stations are Hyde Park Corner, Green Park, Victoria, Marble Arch and Knightsbridge. We opted for Green Park as the walk through Green Park on a crisp winter day is beautiful. I would recommend avoiding Hyde Park Corner as it can be incredibly busy - the alternatives are all just a short walk away.
4. Magical Ice Kingdom
If you are struggling to decide which attractions you should book, I would recommend the Magical Ice Kingdom to anybody. This journey through the spectacular ice sculptures is like nothing I have ever seen before. We were in complete awe at the detail and precision, photographs do not do it justice. Narnia fans would especially love this! We booked our tickets in advance costing £23 for the two of us - and it was worth every single penny. You can select a time slot to ensure it is not too cosy to enjoy the art, which worked really well. There are photo opportunities all around which are really lovely, and quite reasonable prices. There is also an ice slide - I didn’t go on this as I believe it’s for little ones, but it looked SO much fun. This is a great option for all ages - just make sure you bring an extra layer for this attraction as it is icy cold...literally.
5. Festive Treats
One important piece of advice is don’t go to Winter Wonderland on a full stomach. The food stalls are incredible. German sausages, loaded fries and hog roasts for the savoury lovers; and waffles, crepes and churros for anyone with a sweet tooth, there is something for everyone to enjoy. There is also a veggie stall which did look delicious. I could have spent all day trying all of the festive treats so the food stalls are definitely something you do not want to miss.
6. Visit the Christmas Markets
Another thing you certainly won’t want to miss is the christmas market. It is a great size and there is something for everyone to enjoy. It is the perfect place for little gifts and souvenirs. If you’re not feeling festive enough yet, the christmas markets are the place to be.
7, These boots are made for walking...
Although there is a layer of flooring all around the festive village, you will almost certainly get muddy on this day out. As with any day in London, you will likely be walking a lot, so PLEASE listen to your Mumma and wear comfortable walking shoes!
8, School's out for Christmas
If this is an option for you, check the term dates for schools and visit Winter Wonderland before the Christmas holidays begin. We went the day before the schools broke up and it was just perfect. Enough people to feel the buzz of London, however no queues and no standing on each others toes. If it is possible to do so, this could make your experience just that little bit more magical.
9, Posing in a Winter Wonderland
Winter Wonderland is absolutely beautiful, so be sure to bring your camera. Every stall is festive and magical in its own way - I fell in love with the place and I am so glad I have photographs to look back on.
10. Explore London at Christmas
Whilst you have your camera out, make a day of it and go exploring around London. We went to Covent Garden, of course to see the iconic 55ft Christmas tree, and it looked beautiful. London is magical at Christmas time, so if you are visiting for the day I urge you to make the most of it.
Thank you so much for reading, and please do feel free to leave tips of your own in the comments below. I would love to hear your thoughts and whether you would recommend any other Christmas markets!
Have a very merry christmas,
♡ Childline is a free, private and confidential service offering support for any young person under the age of 19 in the UK, no matter how big or small their worries may be. It is also one of the best things I have ever been a part of in my life. ♡
Psychology has been a big part of my life for many years now. I studied it in my own time, at A Level and now at University. I have had dreams of achieving my doctorate ever since my love for the subject began. Part of being a psychologist is that you can never know anything; we theorise, we practice, but we can never know. But one thing I know for sure is that we are all put into this world for our own unique reasons; and I truly believe my reason is to help people. This is one of the main reasons that inspired me to become a Childline Counsellor.
A Typical Childline Shift
I like to help out as much as I can, however my typical Childine shift is every Monday morning and it is the best way to begin the week. There is no way to describe a “typical” shift because every shift is so incredibly different; but I can say that every single shift starts in the most warm and welcoming way. I volunteer in Nottingham and I happened to start at the same time we moved into the brand new base, and it is beautiful. The outside of the base is a gorgeous building surrounded by crisp autumn leaves and lots of delicious food places all around the area. Inside is a bright, colourful and comfy setting, with positive quotes all around the walls. Despite the difficult topics we can deal with on shift, the atmosphere is always so warm. I start my shift by making my cup of tea (fun fact - apparently 52% of Childline counsellors drink tea!) and then enter the counselling room to see some friendly faces, the other counsellors on shift, who are always so lovely and eager to hear about your week. We then all go through to the briefing room with the supervisor for that shift where we will all individually speak about how we are feeling, how our week has been and typically make sure we are all doing okay. I love this part of the shift because it is so clear that everybody genuinely really cares and appreciates one another. We will then go back through the counselling room and begin our shift supporting some incredible young people. The supervisors on shift could not be more supportive if they tried - they are AMAZING. If ever you have a situation where you are not quite sure how to best support a young person, they are right there by your side. At the end of the shift we will have one last discussion to talk about how the shift went and how we are feeling, making sure any worries we may have are left behind before we go home. The supervisors make you feel so valued and appreciated with the praise that they give; this part of the shift really means a lot. It is then home time and ready to start my week, already looking forward to this time next week -apparently it IS possible to enjoy Mondays!
Why I Love Childline
Not only do I love the experience of a shift at Childline, but I admire the organisation as a whole. Childline was founded in 1986 by Esther Rantzen and has helped improve the lives of so many young people ever since. I believe every single person who supports Childline in any way is amazing, but perhaps the most amazing people involved are the children themselves. With every single contact I take I am utterly blown away at the bravery, maturity and courage of young people today. Whenever you speak of being a Childline Counsellor people always say “wow, you must be strong!” - but really, it is the children who inspire this strength. There is nothing more heartwarming than a young person letting you know they managed to speak up about how they are feeling to that family member, or that teacher, or that friend. They booked their first doctors appointment, they attended therapy or they dressed the way they wanted to dress- whatever it is, they did THAT thing. That thing that was terrifying them when they first contacted Childline and now they found the strength to do it. It is absolutely amazing to hear, and I feel so grateful every single day that I get to be one of those people who they share their achievements with. I get to praise them, and support them and help them understand just even a glimpse of how incredible they are. These young people are our future; and I can tell you the future is strong.
I have only been at Childline for a few months and it has already had such a huge impact on me. I would encourage anybody over the age of 16 who would like to support Childline to have a look at their website to see if there are any opportunities near you. It is a wonderful experience that I would recommend to anybody. If you have any questions at all, please feel free to leave a comment or message me personally - I would love to have a chat with you about absolutely anything.
Thank you so much for reading, and please do feel free to leave any comments below. I would love to hear your thoughts and whether you have been apart of anything similar!
Phone: 0800 1111
Email or 1-2-1 chat: https://www.childline.org.uk
SUPPORT CHILDLINE/NSPCC THIS CHRISTMAS♡
The Case: Background
Joan Risch was born 12th May 1930 in Brooklyn, New York. Sadly, Risch endured a traumatic childhood. In 1939 at the age of nine years old, both Risch’s mother and father died in a house fire. Following their deaths, Risch shared that she was sexually abused by her parents in the first few years of her life. Despite this, Risch moved in with her auntie, excelled in school and later university, and led to live a typically normal, happy life. In 1961 she moved to Lincoln, Massachusetts with her husband, Martin Risch, and their two children Lillian (4) and David (2). Here, Risch was described as a loving housewife who was happy to stay at home to look after the children. Sadly only a few months after moving, October 24th 1961 turned out to be the last time Joan Risch was ever seen.
The Case: The Day of the Disapperance
October 24th 1961 started as any normal day for Joan Risch. Her husband left early to fly to New York for business, Risch and Lillian went to the dentist where she booked an appointment for the following week, and she was visited by the milkman, a newspaper delivery and a dry cleaning delivery. All visitors reported that there was nothing unusual about Joan Risch on that day. At around 12pm she took David upstairs to the master bedroom to nap. Meanwhile, Risch's close friend, Barbara, took her son over to Risch's house so that he could play with Lillian on the driveway. This was the last "normal" reported sighting of Joan Risch.
At 2pm Joan Risch took Lillian and her friend back to Barbara's house and left them in the garden without letting Barbara know. At 2:15pm Barbara noticed Risch running towards her car wearing a trench coat and holding a red object with her arms stretched out. Barbara's house had a very restrictive view of Risch's driveway so details could not be confirmed, however as Barbara believed Risch had the children she simply passed it off as a chasing game. This turned out to be the last ever confirmed sighting of Joan Risch. At 4pm Barbara realised the children were in her garden and returned Lillian to her home. Lillian immediately ran back outside saying “Mummy is gone and the kitchen is covered with red paint”. The kitchen was covered in blood, with a trail of blood from the master bedroom where David was sleeping to Risch's car on the driveway. The phone was ripped off the wall, the kitchen was trashed, and Risch's address book was open to the emergency contact page. As for Joan Risch, she was no where to be seen.
Unconfirmed sightings around the time of the disappearance all describe Risch to be clutching her stomach with blood dripping down her leg. The only other reported sighting was of an unfamiliar car on Risch's driveway on the day of the disappearance, a two-toned blue Sedan. Retrospectively, the milkman reported seeing this same car on the driveway five days prior to the disappearance.
This case is particularly fascinating for the huge variety of theories as to what happened to Joan Risch. Perhaps one of the most believed theories is that Joan Risch experienced implications during a home abortion and sadly died of trauma and blood loss. Abortion was illegal around the 1960s and very dangerous for the mother. Some doctors would secretly agree to the procedure, however any implications would result in the doctor immediately disposing the body to avoid the inevitable sentencing for abortion and manslaughter. Theorists suggest that the blue Sedan car belonged to a doctor who had arrived to carry out an abortion after Risch fell unexpectedly pregnant and did not want to tell her husband. The procedure may been carried out in in the master bedroom where implications may have began, hence the slight trail of blood, followed by a tragic turn of events by the time she entered the kitchen. Risch may have tried to call for help, resulting in the doctor ripping the phone off the wall. The doctor may have fled the scene and Risch bled to death whilst driving for help (which could explain Barbara's sighting of Risch running to her car carrying something red, potentially a bloody rag) or they may have disposed of Risch's body themselves. This theory could explain why suspected sightings of Risch describe her as clutching her stomach and wearing a trench coat; speculating she was hunched over in pain and trying to hide the blood.
Interestingly, a key part of this case is Martin Risch’s reports of four empty beer bottles in the home that he could not account for. In the 1960’s beer was often prescribed as a remedy to restore iron levels. It has been theorised that the doctor brought these beers in anticipation of some blood loss during the procedure, hence the empty bottles that Martin Risch could not explain. This can be supported further by the fact there were three unidentifiable finger prints in the home - supporting the idea that Risch was not alone and that these prints may have belonged to a doctor.
Despite this theory being so widely believed, there are certainly complications. The majority of accounts describing Joan Risch’s disappearance describe her blood loss as severe. In reality, police reports suggest that there was not actually enough blood to indicate any life threatening condition. Additionally, the blue Sedan car that many theorists insist belonged the the doctor was dismissed by investigators, claiming the car was most likely an unmarked police vehicle arriving after Barbara called for help at 4:30pm. The face validity of this theory is questionable too; descriptions of Risch on the day of her disappearance seem unrealistically calm and cheery for somebody who was planning an illegal and dangerous procedure. These arguments, as well as the notion that there were no reported signs of Risch being pregnant at the time, lead me to question this theory, encouraging research into a second theory - a staged disappearance
There are two perspectives to the theory that Risch staged her disappearance. Some argue she ran away because she was having an affair, whilst others argue she felt incredibly unfulfilled and ran away to begin a new life. Regardless of perspective, theorists agree that the bloody scene was intentionally created to keep everybody distracted on a complex goose chase. The affair theory proposes Joan Risch was having an affair with whomever owned the blue Sedan car and the three unidentifiable fingerprints. Martin Risch flying out of town may have been to perfect opportunity for Joan Risch to run away with her secret lover. This would explain why the milkman reported seeing the car five days prior to her disappearance as they may have been planning the logistics of this day. This theory is supported by the fact divorce was far from the norm in 1960s; one partner would have to provide evidence of the other committing an offence of cruelty, desertion, adultery, or incurable insanity. Thus, Risch may have felt she had no other choice but to stage an extravagant disappearance and run away. Alternatively, some believe Joan Risch felt so unfulfilled with her life that she simply decided to run away and start a new life. Growing up Risch adored literature; her degree was in literature and she had experienced various jobs that were all supporting her in her ultimate literature career. This all came to an end when Lillian was born and Risch became a house wife, and theorists believe Risch felt hugely unfulfilled by this and did not know what else to do. Critics could easily dispute this by the fact most reports described Risch as a happy housewife, however the fact Risch had moved around America 3-4 times since being with Martin Risch makes it questionable how well Risch’s neighbours and local friends really knew her. Additionally, records show that in the summer before Risch’s disappearance she had checked out 25 library books about staging a disappearance/murder, with the book “Into Thin Air” being eerily similar to Risch’s case. I personally question this "evidence" as I believe this could be explained by her love for literature and perhaps a genuine interest in crime novels, however it is certainly food for thought.
3. Self Inflicted Pain
With personal doubts on the staged theory, there is a final theory to discuss that proposes Joan Risch disappeared as a result of self inflicted pain. Regardless of whether her level of blood loss was intentional or unintentional, it may be possible that Joan Risch became disorientated and alarmed by her body's reaction and ran or drove away to get help. Due to the disorientation she may have got very lost and sadly died before help had been reached. This theory often gets rejected too, again due to the reports of her happy personality, however when considering Risch's traumatic childhood it seems possible that she may have been much lower than people perceived. A childhood emotional trauma therapist explained it is extremely common for individuals who experienced childhood trauma to live their adult life as a “false self”. I must emphasise that this is simply a theory as nobody is in a position to diagnose Risch, however it may be possible that this was Risch's unfortunate reality and it sadly became too much to cope with.
There remains an outstanding amount of theories about what happened to Joan Risch, however these were the theories that fascinated me the most. I personally am most inclined to believe the abortion theory however I am certainly not satisfied with the theory as it stands. I cannot dismiss the fact that Martin Risch consistently believed his wife was still alive; this leads me to believe there is a lot more to this case than any report suggests and that this theory is very much incomplete. I am fascinated by all the existing theories and as it stands I do not entirely agree with any of them, so I would love to discuss these and hear your thoughts and opinions too.
Thank you so much for reading, and please do feel free to leave any comments so we can discuss your thoughts below!