Barbie, Coding and my Would-Like-To-Do List

This is a rather spontaneous blog post but I’ve just been inspired by a post penned by the brilliant Soph Arthur. In the post Soph talks about receiving a special oversized parcel and I was feeling a child like excitement as I watched her unpack it on her Instagram story. Inside were some very special Barbies.

Gone are the unrealistic body types and socialite lifestyle that my Barbie had when I was younger. Instead these diverse dolls are now proud robotics engineers which, along with the kid’s coding website Tynker to inspire young girls into programming. I instantly recognised the significance of this and I’m not sure if this is led by nostalgia but I REALLY want to learn to code with Barbie! I’m hoping that this will inspire other people like me but also help to recruit young girls so that we can start preparing for a future where programming could be a required skill for many job opportunities.

Soph’s post also reminded me of all the things that I want to learn after I’ve completed my Masters. Since my GCSE days, German has always been a language that I’ve wanted to continue learning but never had a continuous amount of time longer than a summer to dedicate to it. While my masters is definitely not a dark cloud looming over me, it does take up a lot of energy and I’m itching to do so many things that keep getting rudely interrupted by my formal education.

I’m now going to present to you a list of things that are constantly on my mind that I wish I could dedicate more time to at the moment:

  1. Knitting – My mum went through a phase of buying me lots of knitting projects and whilst my love for knitting hasn’t vanished, I’m dying to delve into my knitting bag again and finish that rainbow tea pot cosy that I began two years ago!
  2. Learning Sign Language – I’ve ALWAYS wanted to learn sign language because I get frustrated every time I meet people with a hearing impairment and can’t communicate with them just because they can’t hear me.
  3. Learning German – Regaining the confidence to speak German when I had when I was 16 is really important to me. Yes, I know that it’s not the most widely used language in the world but it would still be nice to have a second language under my belt!
  4. Learning to Code – My boyfriend would be proud of this one; as a self- taught coding master himself, he’s shown me that drive and determination can get you anywhere. Now that Barbie can teach me how to code there’s nothing to stop me!
  5. Publishing and Promoting my Book – I’ve actually written a fiction book already and self- published it on Amazon Kindle but I wrote a second one after reflecting on my experience a couple of years later. It’s ready to go but I want to have a clear schedule so I can do it justice and promote it properly!
  6. Writing more fiction – I have SO MANY ideas for stories (and my dad keeps giving me more) but so little time to write them down. So, once I’ve bound and handed in my master’s dissertation I’m going to devote more time to the other side of writing after spending so long immersed in writing non- fiction.
  7. Reading the Books I Keep Buying – Currently sitting patiently on my book shelf are Almost Like a Whale, The 4 – Hour Work Week, This is Going to Hurt, What If? and Why I’m No Longer Talking to White People About Race. I know that I need to stop buying and start reading but it’s hard when there are so many people writing about interesting things!
  8. Colouring – I’m quite late getting on the adult colouring band wagon but my wonderful boyfriend bought me a Wallace and Gromit colouring book to wind down when I eventually get a job and don’t have a dissertation to write anymore!
  9. Finishing the Random Family Album I’ve Made – When my grandad died a few years ago he left us a million photographs that he’d taken over the years which my very organised cousin sorted through and gave me the photographs containing, me my parents and me with my late grandparents. I’ve stuck them all in an A4 notebook but there is still a lot of decorating to be done before it does the memories justice!
  10. Having a Rest – Yes, I think I deserve some time to go for walks and do nothing for a while!

It seems I’ll have to wait until November to do any of these activities as things with SfAM are currently on the move while we prepare for our next Early Career Scientist Research Symposium. I love being busy and that’s probably part of my problem as I take on more and more things that I’m passionate about!

As a final note, please go and follow Soph Talks Science on all social media; she is brilliant at what she does!

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