Monday, November 13, 2017

My Blog Is 4 Years Old!! // Q&A + Freaking Out + Thank You!

Saturday was my blogiversary and seriously you guys I LIKE DIED AND THEN CAME BACK TO LIFE AND THEN REPEATED THAT PROCESS LIKE TEN MORE TIMES. My blog is officially 4 years old! You might be confused if you go back into the archives on my blog because currently I only have public posts to 3 years back. The reason is because when I started blogging I was 9 and probably the cringiest person ever (anyone who has followed me since my 9/10 year old days will know) so about a year ago I kind of deleted a lot of my posts. I do regret it now but they were terrible so I kind of get it. In honor of my blogiversary I decided to do a fun little q&a which you can either find here or down below!

Interestingly if I remember right my first post was a post about halloween published on (of course) November 11, 2013. I didn't even have like an intro post. I literally just put pictures of me from halloween and then told what I did in even worse grammar then I use now.

At the beginning I had a private blog called Nabila Eve. My content was literally just what I did that day in hard to read sentences because I had like zero idea how to type.

Then I got my parents to let me have a public blog and we redid my site. I decided to change my blog name to Hot Town Cool Girl which is what is it now.

I had the default blogger design and I absolutely cringe at how it looked back then. I also had like ten million gadgets because I was that person. Then I actually got someone to design my blog and that was the first time my blog actually looked ok.

In 2015 I started posting more and thinking about it more but I definitely wasn't invested. I posted mostly really short reviews, interviews, and lots and lots of tags.

For the people who actually liked me at this point or at least commented on my blog you are amazing. This would include Noor, one of the people who really inspired me to seriously start blogging!), Dani, a newbie at the time but someone who was always willing to to talk to me, and Rukiya, an incredibly awesome human being who also hosted the blogger choice awards that year!

All throughout that year I did really grow and I posted quite a bit and I was involved but my posts were not at all the best. My the end of that year I had grown a lot blog and non blog wise and had 27 followers.

2016 was when I really got serious and I think sometime in december of 2015 it really switched for me.

Blog wise the beginning of 2016 was neither good nor bad. I posted a lot (maybe too much at times) and some of my posts were pretty good if I do say so myself. I started to really read other people's blog and started learning a lot about blog design and how to get more followers.

I would say by march I would have started calling myself a true and true blogger. My graphics were actually terrible now that I look back on it (I thought picmonkey was the greatest thing in the world)  but at that point I thought of myself and my blog as pretty cool.

May 2016 might have been one of the best months for my blog at least content wise. I am proud of every single post that I published that month and that's something I can't even say now about some of my posts.

One cool thing I remember in July/August is helping out the awesome Bubbles with her blog. She is one of the sweetest people I know ever and everyone should go check out her blog and tell her she's cool.

At the end of 2016 I officially hit 60 followers which means double then I had the year before. When you look at that in a statistical way that is actually kind of impressive but then you look at my post quality in 2013, 2014, and 2015 and you're like oh yeah that makes sense.

And then begins 2017 which has been an AMAZING YEAR (except for the whole flooding thing but that doesn't count!). I turned 13, I went to a blogging conference, I got instagram (where everyone should go follow me, I started getting real about collabs and working with other bloggers and brands, 108,073 page views, and  last but not least I hit 80 followers on the blog and 100 on bloglovin (where everyone should also go follow me).

It's still so so crazy to think that my blog is actually 4 years old! My blog gives me so much joy and I've met so many amazing people on here so before I end this post I just want to say thank you! Thank you to everyone who stuck with me in the beginning when I was kind of horrible. Thank you to everyone who actually talk to me. Thank you to everyone who reads my blog and comments on my posts. Thank you to everyone who cares. THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU.  If you liked this post make sure to follow my blog  and maybe possibly share this post and just my blog in general! Think of it as a present to me and my blog on it's birthday. :)

Are you as excited as I am about this? Do you blog? If so link it down below! What's something you're super passionate about? When did you find my blog? 

Monday, November 6, 2017

A Halloween Themed Interview With The Wonderful Edie + Special Announcement That Might Just Include My Blogiversary!

You guys are probably all confused which is ok because YES I KNOW HALLOWEEN HAS ALREADY PASSED. So one of my awesome online friends Edie just started a new blog  (which you should definitely check out)! We started talking again and she asked if we could maybe do a halloween themed post swap type thing and I suggested we do a fun little halloween themed interview. The whole timing thing was mostly my fault BECAUSE I AM HUMAN AND FORGET THINGS. Anyway, so today I'm going to be asking edie some halloween themed questions and she will be asking me some questions over on her blog which you can check out here

 yay clapping applause celebrating ashley olsen GIF

What’s your favorite costume you’ve ever worn for Halloween? 

My favourite costume I've ever worn has to be when I was a pumpkin for my first ever Halloween when I was only a month old.

That sounds so cute! When babies dress up it's always adorable. Favorite thing about Halloween? 

About MeMy favourite thing about Halloween is probably the spooky feels and this year specifically, Stranger Things 2.

I was annoyingly outlawed from watching stranger things because of super annoying parents. Like they say it's "too scary" even though I DON'T REALLY GET SCARED FROM TV! What do you think is the background of Halloween (you can’t look it up)? 

I'm not entirely certain on background of Halloween (which is terrible as it's my favourite holiday) but I know it originates back to Celtic traditions.

4. Yeah it has something to do with monsters and the day of the dead and stuff like that. I actually totally recommend everyone looking up the history cause it's pretty interesting. :) Do you like horror movies? Why or why not?

I love horror movies a lot of the time, but they sometimes annoy me as they don't really scare me, if that makes sense. 

5. Yeah that makes sense! Like it's supposed to be scary but it's not scary so it's really just annoying. What’s the scariest story you’ve ever heard?

Probably one where a hitchhiker ends up being a ghost, it's more spooky than that but it would take up a lot of space to write it all down.

That sounds super spooky! Thanks for being here Edie!

Speaking of halloween I had a pretty awesome one! Halloween was on a tuesday this year and having halloween on a weekday is always interesting. This year I was going to be a cat but then I couldn't find my cat ears so we ran to the store and I found this witch hat so I ended being this cat witch hybrid. I personally thought I looked pretty cute. After school I went to my friends house and them my parents picked me up and we went to one of my sisters friends houses. From there we went to this thing that they do every year but that I have never been to. It was like a cool halloween block trick or treating parade thing. So pretty much the rode is blocked off and the parents just set up on the side off the road with candy and then all of the kids can just go and trick or treat. Pretty much it's just an easier version of trick or treating especially for the parents. I personally like actual trick or treating better but I got a lot of candy so I'm not really complaining. 

Look it's me!

Again make sure to go check out my interview with Edie!  She has some pretty awesome questions that I loved answering and while you're there make sure to follow her blog as she is a super cool human being. Also my blogiversary is in 5 days which is so crazy! My blog is going to be 4 years old which is weird to even think about. Because it's a pretty big occasion I'm going to be doing a fun little Q&A video. Comment down below all of your questions you have for me. They can be funny or serious or whatever.   

What are some questions you have for me? What did you do for halloween? Did you dress up? If so as what? Do you like my costume? What is your favorite thing you have ever been for halloween? What are your halloween traditions? Did you like my costume? Do you like halloween? Do you celebrate halloween? 

Monday, October 30, 2017

How To Take Awesome Photos With Your iPhone

I literally wrote a lot of this before the hurricane so if anything sounds out of place that might be why Hello. It is me. I am here. I am Nabila. Today I am talking about photos. And iPhones (although this will apply to pretty much apply to any phone).

Who will this help?

-Your friends
-Everyone you know
-anyone who has social media
-anyone who has a phone
-and the troll under the bridge
-your little sister

Pretty much everyone. Pretty much everyone who either has a phone or has access to one. If what I looked up was correct, 77% of all American adults own smartphones. I mean that is a lot and doesn't even include teens and tweens. In this post, I'm going to list 13 tips/things you should if you want to get cool photos with your iPhone. These are super user-friendly so don't fret if you are very new to this whole "Taking photos thing". 

How To Take Stunning Photos With Your iPhone

1. Use The Rule Of Three's

I originally heard about this when I was in 4th grade (I think). I was doing this after-school computer club thing where we made silly videos and it was actually a lot of fun (it was pretty much just a bunch of technology geeks which are of course the best people). The teacher who was in charge of the class mentioned the term but didn't really explain it. I asked my dad about it and he explained it to me. Pretty much the rule of 3's says that the actual subject of the photo should take up about a 3rd of the photograph while the other 2/3rds of the photo should just be background. You can find the actual definition here. This doesn't apply to all photos but you should always keep it in mind. Maybe you are taking a picture of a plant. Instead of just getting the plant show the plant and its surroundings. This makes the photo more interesting and unusual. 

2. Put On The Grid Feature

This goes along with the point above. When you put the grid on when you are taking a photo there will be 9 equal squares. This helps so that you can make a photo look exact and use the rule of 3's. It is super easy to turn this on and personally, I think it really helps. All you have to do is go to the settings app and scroll down to the thing that says "Photo and Camera". Once you are there you just have to scroll and tiny bit and then you should see something that as "Grid" that you can turn on. For some people, this makes it harder to take photos as it can be a bit distracting though. 

3. Don't Use Flash

Most of the time flash just makes a photo look fake a weird. Unless it is dark and you are taking a photo with your friends try not to use flash. I did actually have an example but I can't find the photos so you know...

4. Try Not To Zoom

Whenever possible try to physically get closer to whatever you are taking a photo of. Yes, I know more walking is almost never a good thing but it will make your photo better. I, of course, get using zoom because sometimes you have to. Whenever you do zoom in though it degrades the quality of your photo and makes it really fuzzy. 

5. Clean Your Lens

Don't look at me like I'm a crazy person this is a thing. I promise. It is a good idea to clean your lens everyone once in a while. The lens on your camera can get dirty super easy. I mean think about where your phone has probably been in the past few hours. Maybe in your pocket, in that drawer you haven't cleaned in like 10 months, and maybe even a bathroom. That is both gross to think about but it also means that there is probably a lot of dirt on the lens. Any soft cloth will do the trick. If you happen to have one of those things that are supposed to clean glasses than those also work super well for this. 

6. Try To Use The Rear-Facing camera

This means instead of what I like to call your selfie camera or the camera on the screen side of your phone. There are a couple reasons for this. Number 1 is that personally, I think it is a million times easier. Second though and most importantly the rear-facing camera is a lot better quality than the "selfie camera". 

8. Get A Tripod

You might be confused but yes there is such thing as a phone tripod. I was actually looking them up on Amazon recently because I really want one. The average price is about 10-40$ which isn't like that expensive. They are really useful especially if you have really shaky hands which I definitely do. 

9. Pay attention to lighting 

This is really important for basically every photo you ever take. Things like lighting are essential. I kind of have 3 things for. Number one is when you can if you are taking photos outside get the sun behind you. This makes whatever you are shooting a lot brighter and easier to see and less weird shadows. Number two which relates to number one is that you should always use natural lighting when you can. Number three is..... Something. I actually did have a number three and then I forgot because as I said I have memory problems. 

10. Edit Your Photo

Last but certainly not least is edit your photos! I love editing photos and although it might sound complicated it's pretty easy. I use an app called VSCO on my phone which is really easy to use but also has a lot of features. So I personally love VSCO but there are also a lot of other super cool editors out there and there are some like super professional ones if you are willing to pay money for it.

Thanks to Aura (a cool digital picture frame company) for providing me with this awesome graphic!

And that was how to take awesome photos with your iPhone with the one and only Nabila! Actually, though I took a bunch of photos for this post right before the flood (this post has been pushed back and changed dates when it was supposed to be published like ten times) and it's both making me cringe and smile but also kind of frown and I HAVE NO IDEA WHERE THEY ARE.

So anyway how is life for you guys? Do you use your phone for photography? Are you a blogger? What are your iphone photography tips? Do you enjoy taking photos? What is your favorite photo you have ever taken? 

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