Sunday, 16 February 2014

Weekly Round Up #1

Hello and welcome to a new segment here on Geeky Femmes! I (Ari) will to do a weekly roundup of interesting/important things have hit the (or at least my) radar this week.

First up, Noelle Stevenson did this ace short comic about what it can be like going into comic shops as a lady. Luckily enough I’ve never had this happen, but I’m always guarded in case it does.

Images grabbed from Noelle's Tumblr.

Actress Ellen Page recently came out and delivered a gorgeous, inspiring speech about love.

She-Hulk #1 was released by Marvel, continuing the group of lady-led comic books coming out. I gave it a good review over on my other blog.

Apologies for the brevity of this, but if you feel I’ve missed anything, feel free to comment and share!

You can find me on Twitter (@ariellalphabet) and Gina (@HEXX_)

If you’d be interested in doing a guest post here, let one of us know! 

Thursday, 13 February 2014

7 Gift Ideas for your Bestie this Galentine’s Day!

Hello Geeky Femmes! How’s your February treating you so far? As some of you know, today (13th February, the day before Valentine’s Day) is Galentine’s Day. What is Galentine’s Day? In short, it’s totally awesome. A fictional holiday dreamt up in Amy Poehler’s awesome comedy show Parks and Recreation, it’s a day where you appreciate your best and closest lady pals in the way you would celebrate Valentine’s Day.  Backed by Amy Poehler’s Smart Girls, an extension of Poehler’s awesome, which helps support ladies and girls around the world, it's one of the best fake-holidays in the world! I think it’s a super cute idea to appreciate your BFFs and let them know how much you love them! Sadly I’m not hanging out with my bestie Gina this year (Booo to 9AM university starts!) but we have the weekend to be awesome. 

Onto the list!

Number One: Mixtapes/discs/playlist/your music player of choice

I’ll admit, I can be a little old-fashioned at times. Sometimes this comes as part of the various fashion subcultures I’m part of, sometimes it’s because I enjoy it. When I was at school, I would frequently make mix discs for my close friends (a friend of mine informs me that he still has one of these!) and I absolutely loved the experience. Picking songs from my wide library that I hoped my friends would love, customising a case and then giving it to them was absolutely magical. So, do the same for your friends- not only is it a great way to share your music taste and introduce your friends to new bands, it can be a great ice breaker with new people.

A sample of awesome femme-friendly playlists from 8Tracks that are great:

Happy Galentine's Day! 

Number Two: Friendship bracelet/necklaces

Leslie Knope & Ann Perkins from Parks & Rec!
Available here on Etsy

Another slightly old-school thing, I love friendship necklaces. I never had them when I was younger (partially out of not knowing anyone who would really appreciate it, and partially because I’d rather keep both necklaces to myself!) but as I grow older and peruse the endless shopping websites and services the internet has to offer, I’ve come across some awesome ones. In pretty much any Claire’s Accessories shop you can find some super cute ones, but if you think they’re a bit too little-girly, you can get some super cool ones on Etsy. Check out some of my favourites here, here and here.

Number Three: Fandoms

How cute is this Adventure Time cross stitch?!
You can buy the pattern here.

Is your best friend a Potterhead? Sherlockian? Pegasister? Mega-fan of Adventure Time? You can find her something perfect online! Whether it’s a t-shirt subtly declaring her support for Destiel, an Adventure Time cross stitch, you can find a sea of amazing things online. Or, if you don’t want to buy something, check out the sea of tutorials online, and adapt them for your needs.

Number Four: Charity Donations

If your best friend isn’t into material possessions, you can always arrange a charity donation in her name for a set amount of money. Pick a charity she feels strongly about, and away you go! V-Day is a great charity to donate to, but keep in mind any local ones.

Number Five: A magazine subscription

Magazines are both a blessing and a curse. On the plus side, you can always keep them about, be it for scrapbooking, inspiration or just a flick-through on a lazy afternoon if you don’t have time to get invested in a book. On the negative side, you can (I always tend to) wind up with a collection of them scattered around your house, dangerously teetering on any solid surface. However, magazines are always hand to have around. Bitch magazine currently has a sale on their gift subscriptions (as well as including a pretty slick gift card!) so this is another great gift idea.

Number Six: Baked goods

Everyone I know LOVES baked goods. I mean, who doesn’t? Galentine’s Day is a perfect opportutnity to make your bestie some delicious treats. I love this cupcake recipe, and I am known to make yummy Nutella cookies from time to time. Buzzfeed have a great list of yummy cupcakes which can be great inspiration… OR just make for pretty things to look at!

Number Seven: A Cup of Tea and a Chat

How perfect is this gif?!

Sure, pretty things and lovely gifts are great, but sometimes you can't beat a good cup of tea. Either in your own home or out at a cafe, a cup of tea and a long chat can be perfect. 

So there you have it! Let me know what you get up to this Galentine’s Day, and how you celebrate!

You can also find me on Twitter, as well as over on my blog

Monday, 10 February 2014

Back to your scheduled progamming. Also, help to decrease world suck!

 Aaand we're back! 
It seems we have taken an unannounced hiatus from this blog, but we are back again, and have plenty of posts planned for the future.

Today I want to talk about something that may not occur to many of us very often, if at all, and that is using the internet productively. You probably think that you're already semi-productive with your use of the internet. Maybe you use it as a platform to showcase your talents, to keep in touch with friends, keep in the loop about projects that matter to you, or to casually follow (okay, okay: stalk) your idols. Of course there is some downtime, often arising from boredom or procrastination – I totally understand this. There is nothing wrong with the fleeting but enjoyable amount of gratification one can achieve from levelling up on one's mmorpg of choice, but it's all about balance.  

Do you use any of that internet time to give hope to people who, at this very moment, are thousands of miles away from you and don't have even the most basic essentials that we take for granted each day? No? Well, here are some websites and organisations that allow you to give to those who actually need it. Websites that in some cases don't even necessitate that you part with any of your money at all.  

  1. Care2 is a platform for people who wish to make a difference with a wide variety of issues from animal welfare to politics to civil rights and the environment. Users can create and sign petitions for causes that they believe in, and visit the Click to Donate page daily, to give to charitable organisations by simply clicking the button on each tab- you don't have to donate any money of your own and clicking takes no more than a minute of your time. You can help to save a few acres of rainforest rather than idly reblogging a photograph of the rainforest on your Tumblr! Better yet, you can create an account and track how much you've helped each cause over time; way more satisfying than levelling up, right?

How does it work?
When you click on the donate button, care2's sponsors will donate to the selected cause. It's that simple.

  1. freerice is a website that allows you to donate rice for the hungry and help fund education for the underprivileged. Owned by the United Nations food programme, free rice requires you to answer randomly generated questions on a topic of your choice, including English vocabulary, maths, chemistry, the humanities, geography, the sciences and even SAT test preparation. For every correct answer, 10 grains of rice are donated by the organisation, and I should warn you, the quizzes can get very addictive.

  2. World Builders is a charitable organisation that aims to “use the collective power of readers, fellow authors and book lovers to make the world a better place”. Founded by author Pat Rothfuss, World Builders works with Heifer International to promote education, sustainable agriculture, and local industry all over the world, and in turn those who donate are in with a chance to win all sorts of cool stuff from authors and publishers of the best books and webcomics.
    There are multiple ways to participate: 
    The Lottery, which is basically what it sounds like: you donate, and are in return entered in a draw to win a bunch of cool stuff. 
    The Sure Thing, where you basically just buy something awesome from the store and Auctions, where rare and specialised services are auctioned off to the highest bidder – in the past this has included “professionals who are willing to read and critique your manuscripts...signed art and rare books. There have been quite a few chances to win guest appearances in comics and get your name into upcoming books.”

    If you're a self-proclaimed geek and book lover (which I guess is pretty likely if you're reading this blog), World Builders is probably calling out to you, so go on ahead. Just come back here after. We'll be waiting! No really, I'll be here... 
  3. Tab For A Cause is a non-profit organisation that makes donating to charities super quick and easy. All you have to do is download the add-on for your web browser (this doesn't take more than a minute!), and voilĂ ! Each time you open a new browser tab, their sponsors donate to the wide variety of affiliated charities.
I hope that these sites demonstrate how easily you can help decrease worldsuck and make your internet browsing sessions more productive – if you're anything like Ari and I, you clock enough hours on the internet to make a sizeable difference and increase your own personal Level Of Ultimate Awesomeness in the proccess.