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Free the freckles

Blogger and cat lover In love with books, pizzas and DiCaprio Writing is my passion

About me

Hi

I'mEva Marie

French student and blogger

Welcome to Free the freckles, where I love to write about anything that comes to my mind, with no taboo. I’m 24, I’ve got freckles (you get it now) and I’m a grumpy French, sometimes, who writes in English. I love books, cats, le barbu, pizzas and Dicaprio. Besides that, there is not much that you need to know about me. Except that his blog has seen is first day back in 2017, and I'm proud that I manage to keep it that long.

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Lockdown 2.0 - What I'm watching and reading


As I wrote this, France is already on its 13th day since the President announced the second lockdown. It is really strange to go there again, yet doesn't feel that foreign. Maybe it's because it's not the first one, that everyone was waiting for it, or simply that it doesn't change much work/uni-wise, but it's easier to deal with. I mean, look at these pictures : I am allowed to walk along the canal once a day with these beautiful colors in Paris! I miss walking around the city and exploring new spots, especially during autumn, so I guess we all have to get used to not being allowed to do the things we like doing for a while. And that's okay.

I've been baking and cooking a lot during the weekends. It's just great to have good homemade meals when it's so cold out there. Being able to do nothing but read, cuddle the cat and watch movies and series. We recently watched The Hobbit, the three of them and The Witches. This one was really not so great ; strange and not as good as expecting when you see all the good names around this movie. We are also currently watching The Queen's Gambit. It's not the best, but I'm enjoying it so far. I didn't think that you could have that much suspense when watching people playing chess.

 


As for books, I'm trying to finish Ten thousand doors of January by Alix E. Harrow. This book feels like it never ends if I'm honest. I thought it was going to be really fantastical and magical, but I don't see a lot of these in the end. It's really slow in a way with too much describing (I don't enjoy endless description). I also read a lot of horror/scary books lately such as Home before dark by R. Sager - it's really good and quite different from the traditional haunted house story, The Haunting of Ashburn House by D. Coates which was also very good and really intriguing. And finally, I'm trying to read a bit more of poetry. It's not my ideal kind of books but I try to find some I like. Amanda Lovelace's latest poem collection is one of them, Break your glass slippers. It's a bit different from her previous ones, it's more peaceful and a lot about self-esteem and how to be good with yourself. If you have any good poetry recommendation, please let me know.

I'll try to do one of those monthly wrap up for the books I've read this month. But before that, I hope you're all doing okay and managing as best as you can. Let's all get hopeful that 2020 is not a lost cause (thanks the US for that!), and be even more hopeful for the following weeks before the end of the year.

Carrot cake, the recipe

Last year, I discovered a recipe that became my favorite cake ever. It doesn't even has chocolate in it! It's a really soft and autumnal cake if you fancy a change of chocolate cakes. I usually make a butternut cake but it always takes me ages to make it (I grate the butternut by myself, I don't have a food processor or anything). This time, I wanted to make it quicker, so I took carrots instead. And let me tell you, it tastes as good as the butternut one. So feel free to chose one or the other, they're just so good.
 
 
 

What you'll need :

For the cake :

  • 200g of flour
  • 300g of grated carrot (or butternut)
  • Salt
  • 50g of almond powder (optional)
  • 130g of butter
  • 100g of sugar
  • 1 to 3 tsp of cinnamon
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 sachet of baking powder
 
For the icing :
  • 200g of cream cheese
  • 3 to 4 tbsp of icing sugar
  • Vanilla (powder)

Follow these steps

  1. Mix the cream cheese and icing sugar together, than add the vanilla. Stir together than put in the fridge.
  2. Separate the whites from the yolks then whip the egg whites.
  3. Whip the sugar with the egg yolks, salt and cinnamon. Add the flour and the almond powder if you have some.
  4. Melt the butter and add it in the mix, then the egg whites. 
  5. Add the carrot/butternut, the baking powder than mix everything gently. 
  6. Pour into a buttered mold and bake for 1 hour at 180°C.
  7. Once it's cool, add the icing on top. It's now reading to be eaten!

My autumnal TBR


Autumn (and Christmas) is probably my favourite time of the year to read as much as possible, especially spooky and/or cosy books. They are just the best to get into the scenery, the mood, and all the cosiness! Every year, I did not plan enough to read all the books I wanted to, but this year I wanted to change that. I’ll try to read at least 4 autumnal books a month until November – let’s be reasonable. Here’s the one I want to get my hands on to. 

The secret history by D. Tartt 

I’m not sure I need to introduce this book as you have probably seen in a hundred time on Instagram. I wanted to read this book for so long. Actually, I already started it last year on my kindle but I found it really hard to get into. Therefore, this year I bought the paper version. I hope it will be easier to read in with a physical copy. 



 
The Binding by B. Collins 

The book cover was the first thing that introduced me to this book. It is beautiful and I’m gonna try to have physical copies of very pretty (and good) books. But the description was even more intriguing as it talks about … books in a mystery and sort of magical worlds. I’m so excited to read it! 

Rebecca by D. du Maurier 

Again, this book is all over on Instagram. If I’m right, there might even be a film adaptation coming soon. I was not interested in this book until I read its description. The atmosphere seems right up my street, and perfect for rainy days. This is exactly what I’m looking for for the season. 

 

In a dark, dark wood by R. Ware 

I mean, the title is already everything. This book, like Rebecca, seems to have the mystery and horror vibes I’m looking for. I might not read that just before bed, but it sure will be something nice to read for this time of year. If not now, then when? 

Haunted by J. Glidewell 

I mean, yes, most of these books will have some sort of horror/spooky atmosphere. But I assure you it was not my intention. It’s just really hard to not have a thousand mystery books to read in October. But again, I can’t resist! I hope this one will be just as good as the others. 

 
 
And more: The Starless and The Night circus by E. Morgenstern, Home before dark by R. Sager ; Follow you home by M. Edwards ; The night gardener by J. Auxier ; Frozen Charlotte by A. Bell … 

If you’ve read any of these books, please let me know which ones you prefer and why. And of course, I would love some new recommendation, even if it’s not for this year.

What did I read this month? #11


At the beginning of the year, I challenged myself to read 80 books in 2020. It did not seem impossible to manage that two years in a row and I wanted to read just the same. I know that reading is not about the number of books you read, but about the quality of the books you chose, blab bla bla. Still. I like to challenge myself and discover as many books as possible. However, by the end of August I realized that I only had four more months to read around 35 books to reach that goal. I freaked out, then I try to be organized for those few months to read them all. That’s probably why you’ll see more books on those posts for the months to come.

The Twilight saga – S. Meyer 

After reading Midnight Sun last month, I wanted to dive in the books again. Nothing better before the beginning of autumn. It was quite nice to go back to those teenage years with all those characters. I saw Bella in a new light, someone very strong despite what everyone thinks of her, who know what she wants and a wise soul. While Edward and Jacob were just in a constant fight to prove how much they loved her and how much they want to protect her (really boring/annoying as she is a bloody woman and does not need a knight no protect her from the world, thank you very much). Other than that and the strong attraction between the two characters (that seems to be all about beauty sometimes…), it was a good and quick read. 

   

 

Outlander 3, Voyager – D. Gabaldon 

Oh boy. It took me seven months to finish this book. It was huge and good and perfectly detailed. Jamie and Claire are two of my favorite characters ever, I could not say it enough. They are so brave, strong and have their feet on earth. They have a heart and compassion, while being very stubborn and strong-minded. This book was all about the reunion of the two lovers and how twenty years changed nothing in their love while changing everything. The writing is perfect, as always; you have the sensation to be just right next to the characters, seeing what they see and living what they live. No matter how beautiful or harsh.
 

Queenie – C. Carty-Williams

A modern Bridget Jones that was not really necessary. I was really disappointed by this book as I was expecting something with more depth and meaning. Queenie is just the story of a self-absorbed young woman who needs help to figure things out in her life. Her friends don't always seem like good friends, or at least she's not a very good friend. She does not really talk to them or tell the truth. She is self-centered but doesn't let anyone in, really in. And when finally she gets the help she needs, everything just because easy, like magic. I thought it was ridiculous to feel good right away, with just a couple of sessions. There is also the racism issues that are sometimes talked about, but not in a very meaningful way either ; something was definitely missing.  Well, clearly, I would not recommend this book.

The accident season - M. Fowley-Doyle

The very first autumnal book of the year, people! It feels so good to be back in this spooky atmosphere. And this book was really nice to start with. Too short in my opinion, therefore missed depth and perspective. However, it was really well done with lovely characters with a spooky side to all of them. I loved the scenery, the season and the strange things happening ... but without any real explanation or curiosity whatsoever. The characters are just used to the accidents happening to them once a year. They don't question it or try to get ride of it. That's what was mainly missing in this story to be really great and even more interesting. 
 

We have always lived in the castle - S. Jackson

I wanted to read this book for so long. This year, I finally managed to make it my second autumnal read of the year. And... it was such a disappointment. It was really short and not really interesting. Just mainly strange, weird even. Some characters come and go just like that, that was strange. And as for the two main protagonist, what was their problem? Really, I really don't understand what's the fuss about this book. If someone read it, please tell me if and why you loved it. 

Has my anxiety got worse since lockdown?



End of May, the official lockdown was over in France. We could go out without a signed paper, and not just for grocery shopping. At that point, I was scared to go outside and have a normal Saturday. I was afraid to do just that. Once I went out, I obviously understood that it would be very normal, yet strange. The atmosphere was not the same, but it did not mean that the world was going to kill me instantly if I lay one foot out of my apartment. 

It made me realized how much I constructed something in my head, something I was scared of even though I just imagined it. I was basically anxious to go outside and live. That’s when it made me wonder if my anxiety had worsened during lockdown. If staying inside in this very safe space with just my boyfriend (+ cat) had made me feared anything that was not inside this safe bubble. The first time someone asked us to go out, I said no. I was just too anxious to do that. The next times, I said yes because it sounded stupid to stay inside being scared while it was perfectly okay to have fun and enjoy the world out there (but still being safe!). 

I don’t want to live this experience as a step back in my work with anxiety. Because yes, I worked so hard to be where I am now (or where I was before everything happened) that I would be such a shame to go back to where I was before. I don’t want to be scared of little things like taking the tube alone or going out. I can be scared, that’s normal, but I’m not sure I want to feel anxious. I know that we all experience this in our own different way and that there is no good and bad in all of those, but I don’t want to take this step back. The fact that I was so much in my safe bubble might makes me afraid of what’s outside of it. 

I’m not sure how to deal with that, and it might be a while before everything goes back to ‘normal’. However, I need to give myself some peace. Yes, as an introvert, I love spending more time at home, but no, I don’t want that my home feels like the only safe place I can be. I guess I need more time to figure this out. However, I’m curious to know what are your thoughts on this. How have you been feeling lately?

Quotes

Don't feel stupid if you don't like what everyone else pretend to love.

Emma Watson

Actress and Feminist

I myself have never been able to find out precisely what feminism is: I only know that people call me a feminist whenever I express sentiments that differentiate me from a doormat.

Rebecca West

Author and Feminist

I used to think that freedom was being not attached to anything. I've been working on redefining that, that freedom is not about being not attached to people. You can still be free when people love you.

Jemima Kirke

Actress

EVA MARIE
Rennes, France

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