October has been a crazy month of both highs and lows for me. At the beginning of the month, I was home in Perth catching up with family and friends, and by the end of it - the night of the 26th of October to be exact - my grandpa passed away. I'd thought about skipping October's Life Lately post all together and not mentioning anything at all on social media, but as I type this with tears welling in my eyes, I realised that it was important to me to commemorate him in some way. We tend to only show the highlight reels of our lives on social media - I do it too - not for wanting to portray a certain lifestyle, but because blogging is sort of an escapism for me. Death, however, is inescapable and this was the most significant thing to happen to me this month (and in my life in general).
My grandpa died of pancreatic cancer, which is one of the most aggressive types of cancers out there. I'd only known about his diagnosis for a month. I don't know if this is morbid or not, but in a way, I'm grateful for the way cancer can give you the opportunity to say goodbye because not everyone gets that with their loved ones, even if I only knew for a short while. Our last moment together was spent laughing, watching cat videos together (he and my grandma are who I inherited my crazy cat lady from) while I was home last and I'm glad I have that to remember him by. He was our Santa every Christmas with a Santa's hat and white singlet hanging from his ears as a beard, and he would always read the names on gift tags incorrectly (the names of who no one in the family even goes by, lol).
Rest in peace, Grandpa.
It's hard being across the other side of the country away from your loved ones, let alone during a difficult time in the family. It makes me more certain of my decision to move back home next year and by the time this post goes live, I'll be back in Perth once again to be with my family to say goodbye.
I never forget how lucky I am to have such wonderful people in my life, but during times like these, the kindness and simple sweet gestures of others really melts my heart and lifts my spirits. My manager at work bought me a bouquet of tulips and a group of my Melbourne friends surprised me with a Mecca Cosmetica gift card to treat myself. I bought the beautiful Diptyque Baies Noire Candle with it and to quote my housemate, they were glad to fund my bougie lifestyle. LOL (it's true). Even during hard times, there's always laughter to be found.
Let's move onto happier things, shall we?
They were so many new music releases this month! I listened to Tycho, Phantogram, Jagwar Ma, Banks and Two Door Cinema Club's new stuff, but I was left feeling a little underwhelmed, unfortunately. I think because they're all bands I adore dearly, my expectations were just too high. Two Door Cinema Club just haven't been the same since 2010's Tourist History, which was such a banger of an album and I feel like nothing new they put out will ever be as good as that record. Tycho was another disappointing one for me too; Epoch just didn't didn't have the same dreamy vibes as his previous albums, Dive and Awake. Nevertheless, there were one or two tracks from each of these albums that I still really enjoyed.
To my surprise, the best album I listened to in October was Empire of the Sun's, Two Vines. This band is so 2008 to me (Walking on a Dream, anyone?) and their 2013 release, Ice on the Dune, just did nothing for me, but they've really made a comeback this year. I think they went back to their roots with this one and inspired by Mother Nature, it's so dreamy and chill. Before and To Her Door are going to be my summer jams.
In addition to my September/October playlist, I also created a Stranger Things-inspired playlist this month, which you can have a listen to here. If you like '80s synth tunes, you'll love it and I like to think I captured the mood of the show quite well! Making it got me listening to Future Unlimited like crazy this month. If I didn't know any better, I would actually think they're an '80s band! I love them.
Film and television
I watched a lot of movies to distract myself and take my mind off things this month; my favourites being Beautiful Noise, Fargo, The Walk, Breathe and Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs. If you're into shoegaze/dream pop music, Beautiful Noise provides an insightful look into the late '80s to early '90s genre with interviews from musicians of incredible bands like Slowdive, The Jesus and Mary Chain, My Bloody Valentine and Cocteau Twins. It also features interviews from Robert Smith of The Cure and the more contemporary musicians that took influence from the movement such as M83 and Ulrich Schnauss. The documentary also notes that the genre saw the healthy representation of female musicians, which I really appreciated. Yes to music! Yes to feminism!
Since I finished Orange is the New Black last month, I began Absolutely Fabulous upon my mum's recommendation. I'm up to season 2 and though I just adore Patsy, the show isn't as funny as I thought it'd be. I don't know, perhaps I'm not used to British comedy! I'll continue watching it though as I'd like to see the entire series before I watch the film. My housemate and I also began watching Gilmore Girls. I remember it being a pretty big deal ten years ago, though I never really thought anything of it back then. We've watched about six or seven episodes so far; I can't say I get the hype just yet and it is very white people, but I guess so are most TV shows. Also, when does Chad Michael Murray piss off? Because he is actually the worst. I think Rory is so far my favourite character.
Around the web
- Lastlings have released a new song called Time and it's super chilled out and dreamy.
- Grimes released seven new music videos off her latest album, Art Angels, and filmed over the summer during her European tour on just a phone, they're all absolutely incredible.
- If you're both a Stranger Things fan and a kid who grew up in Australia during the '90s, you'll love this Stranger Things and Round the Twist opening theme song mashup. Genius!
- I was asked to partake in Maslow & Co.'s Maslow Maven's Beauty Rituals feature; you can read all about my nighttime skincare routine here.
- The Guardian posted an extract from Sali Hughes' new book, Pretty Iconic: A Personal Look at the Beauty Products that Changed the World, and I just adored it. An open and honest read about her personal relationship with beauty, I cannot wait to get my hands on this!
- Anna of This Last Moment once again wowed me with her eloquent words in her post, Forging a Sisterhood. I feel so proud and lucky to have such wonderful women in my life who I call my friends and she is absolutely spot on when she says we emphasise the role of a relationship in a woman's life while downplaying the power of friendships.
- Apple released new MacBook Pros with a sleek Touch Bar feature and I want!