Very late update!

Hi everyone,

I have already given myself several slaps on the wrist because of how late this blog is! It has been a rather busy few weeks since my last blog, and I just have not had the chance to sit down and give you all an update!

First of all, I have a job!! Unfortunately it is a temporary position for 6 weeks, but the recruitment agency I have registered with are hoping to have a steady stream of temporary vacancies coming up soon, so hopefully they will keep me busy for the forseeable future 🙂 I started last Monday and we (there are 14 of us temping there just now) had a very full on week of training. Thankfully it is all coming together now, and we all seem to be getting into the swing of things. It’s a shame to know that once we’ve settled into the place, we will all be moving on, but temping also has its perks!

I am still trying hard to keep myself fit and motivated. Last week was kind of an epic fail when it came to my exercise and eating habits. I think just being back at work after a while threw me completely out of my routine! But I am back on track this week, and decided to try swimming again. I haven’t been swimming for years, and because I can be prone to sore knees and a sore back, I thought it would be a good form of exercise for me. So my plan is to go swimming twice a week after work – this may change when I change jobs thought, depending on the time I get home. It takes so much longer to get home when I work in the city centre – the travelling is just a nightmare 😦

I’m also doing a lot better with my food habits this week. I did take nice, healthy lunches with me all week last week, but found I was very prone to bingeing when I got home simply due to being tired and having no energy at all. I’m doing so well, that I even avoided having one of the FREE cupcakes that were being handed out at work today!! I think I may have been the only person in the entire building who resisted the temptation 🙂

As I sit here, yawning my head off, I forgot just how sleepy I used to be after I’d been swimming – is it simply because it’s exercise? Or is there another reason why swimming in particular always makes people (me) very very sleepy??

Anyhoo, I do apologise that it is such a short post, but I promise my next post will be more exciting, and with more to talk about 🙂 xoxox

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Found my motivation

Hi everyone!

Since making my new year’s resolution to get healthier/fitter and lose weight, I had been struggling. I think with the general lack of motivation and the fact that I was constantly feeling very low didn’t help me one little bit. What I desperately needed was *cough* a kick up the arse! *cough* – or in other words, to find my motivation, get my mind in the right place to stick with my plans.

Well I am glad to say, I seem to have found it! Rejoice!!! I decided to buy an outfit in the size I would ultimately like to get down to and now have this hanging on my wall in my room. I never thought something so simple would work, but it seems to be doing the job of stopping me from bingeing on junk food or having a lazy day. When I look at that outfit now, my mind keeps telling me “you will fit into those!” It’s not even a “special” outfit, we’re talking a pair of jeans and a t-shirt. But just to see the size of my target outfit compared to my current clothes is really spurring me on 🙂

As I am a very organised person, I made a spreadsheet (come on, who doesn’t love a good old spreadsheet??) where I have all my stats listed and I can really keep track of what I’m losing/what I still have to lose. I’ve also planned all of my meals for the week. I was never keen to plan a whole week’s worth of meals before, because I’m the type of person that can change my mind at the last minute of what I actually want for my meals. I will admit I have switched a few meals around, but otherwise I have stuck to the plan perfectly. I’ve also reduced my portion sizes, going to the extreme of marking one of our dinner plates into sections to help me keep my portion sizes right! Also, I live with my parents at the moment, so if I’m lucky enough to have my mum make my dinner, she can use the plate as a guide too 🙂

I’ve also made sure that I have been out walking every day, and have managed at least 45 minute walks, with my mum and our dogs tagging along too. I am starting slowly with the exercise, and hope to build up to using our cross trainer and I’m also going to invest in a kettlebell to use regularly.

I haven’t had any fizzy juice or chocolate for a few days now, and I can’t even say I’m missing them right now. I mainly drink water throughout the day, but usually have a small glass or fresh orange juice with my lunch or dinner. I am a sucker for Bacon Tasty’s from Asda, so I bought some small freezer bags and have managed to get 10 small portions of these set aside as a snack if I am craving something sweet! If I’m honest, I could easily get through 3/4 of a bag of those before, so this is huge progress for me! I am also going to allow myself a day at the weekend where I can be less strict about my food and treat myself, for example if I fancy a takeaway, I will do this then. After all, everyone has to allow themselves a foodie treat every now and again right?

So things are definitely looking up on that front 🙂 I will be weighing myself once a week (each Saturday), and will update this blog every so often with my progress – it’s not going to turn into a weight loss blog though!

I am hoping to blog again next week with an update on the never ending job hunt!! There may be some good news on that front soon, but I don’t want to jinx anything, so I will leave it until I hear news 🙂

For now though, I will say goodnight, enjoy the rest of your weeks, and have a fantastic weekend!!! 🙂 xoxo

Feeling productive

Hi everyone!

So it’s been a couple of weeks since my last blog post, and I thought it was time for a little update on what’s going on in my life…

This week, I finally got to see my personal tutor at uni to discuss me taking a year out. All it took was completing one little form, and that was it! My year out is now official. A year out should really be an exciting opportunity for most people, however for me that’s just not the case. I have been suffering with anxiety for the last few months, with financial worries on top of that – not a great combination! So my year out is going to involve me working – when I actually get a job. I have been applying for jobs every single day since the New Year and so far have had a massive 0 interviews! I am trying to stay positive about it though, and hope that someone will just see my talent shining through and offer me work 🙂 Well, one can only dream.

With the paperwork completed yesterday, I moved all my stuff back home! Can I just say that I am quite impressed that I managed to fit everything into my room at home. I have a tiny (no exaggeration there!) room, which had bags and boxes full of my stuff overflowing in it today. But I spent the entire day organising everything, and it looks fab now!! I have to say that I LOVE the drawer organisers from Ikea – I think they are called SKUBB? You get 6 in each pack (2 of each size) for £6, so they are a bargain too. I have them in almost every drawer now and they just make life and organising so much easier. If you haven’t already figured it out, I am a bit of an organisation freak – I just like everything to have a place, and to stay in that place until I decide to move it. That’s not unreasonable at all is it? 🙂

So a very productive day was had today.

My priorities during my year out of university are:

1) To get a job and start earning a good wage. I also want to pay off some of the debt that I have accumulated from being a student! Just a heads up guys – credit cards are BAD! They are the root of all evil! 😦

2) To enjoy my own company and get to know myself a bit better.

3) I hope that I can find the love for my course again. I completely fell out of love with it toward the end of last year and just had no motivation whatsoever to continue on with it. So I do hope that will come back before the year is over. If not, I may have to re-evaluate that :/

4) And lastly, my New Year’s resolution which was to get fitter. I have been doing really well sticking to my healthy eating plan so far, just having a couple of days “off” to enjoy myself! I have a couple of exercise challenges that I am going to start very soon, so I shall keep you updated on how that goes. Me and exercise don’t usually go together, but I need to get my backside moving, so I will just have to suck it up 🙂

I know it’s not really much of an update, but nonetheless it was needed!

I’d love to know how your New Year’s resolutions are going, if you are still keeping up with them? And I would love to hear from anyone else who has taken a year out of college or university! What did you do in your year out? Travelling/working?

For now though, let me leave you with my favourite quote of the day:

“Just when the caterpillar thought the world was over, it turned into a butterfly” 🙂  xoxox

Shopping

Hi everyone!

I hope 2014 is treating you well so far?

I went shopping today! Ok, so I only bought 3 things, but I thought I would do a little blog on what I got and what I think of them. Can I just say that I have never done this kind of thing – beauty blogging. I am very much an amateur (as if you can’t guess!), so this is simply me giving my reviews of what I have purchased.

Ok, so the first thing I want to mention was actually a present I got for Christmas. My best friend got me the Benefit Groovy Kind-a-Love gift set. Firstly, I LOVE Benefit’s packaging!! The tin looks like this:

Benefit gift set

 

Just lovely! 🙂 And inside, we have:

Benefit Gift Set

 

Lots of little miniature goodies! If you haven’t seen this set, it comes with the Porefessional primer, Benetint, Dandellion and Gimme Fever blushers, a blush and eyebrow applicator, They’re Real mascara and four eye shadows, which are just stunning! I have now used everything in this set and I just love it, it is a fantastic gift for anyone to get a taste of Benefit products. For me, this is the first Benefits products I have owned, so was very excited when I opened my present! A special mention to the Porefessional, which is fantastic at diminishing pores. I have a lot of open pores on my face, particularly by the sides of my nose, and when I have this on they look so much better, and my skin looks that little bit more flawless. I would definitely recommend trying this out if you are worried about pores.

The next product I want to talk about is the Estee Lauder Double Wear Light foundation. I have been desperate to get a better foundation, but I’m the type of person who like to finish a bottle before I move on – waste not want not and all that jazz! I had read/heard some great reviews for this, so I really wanted to give it a try. I was a little bit apprehensive at the price of this (£28.50), as I’ve been used to drug store foundations. I spent a bit of time with one of the Estee Lauder consultants making sure I was getting the right shade for my complexion (I went for Intensity 1.0). This foundation is just lovely!!! It is a light foundation (does what it says on the tin), has great coverage and it looks very natural when applied. You don’t need to use a lot of product to get good coverage either, so it will last.

The next two products I purchased are from the Collection range (used to be Collection 2000). After hearing so much about the Lasting Perfection Concealer, I just had to get it and see what all the fuss was about. Really, at a mere £4.19, it really can’t go far wrong! I got it in shade 3 – Medium. This concealer definitely earns the great reviews it has had. It does have great coverage! I tend to have days where I get really bad blemishes, and this covers them up so well (I am currently having a few bad blemishes days, so it’s a great test for the concealer!). It doesn’t appear cakey at all on my skin, and it stays in place all day! What more could you ask for? I also purchased the Collection Bronze Glow in shade 01. Sunkissed. I haven’t heard/read anything about this bronzer, but I thought it looked rather lovely, so wanted to give it a try. It looks like this (with the Lasting Perfection concealer beside it):

Collection bronzer

 

I tried it out on my skin today, and it is lovely. It has a nice but subtle shimmer to it, which just gives you a lovely glow. I don’t use a lot of bronzing powder, but I will probably use this a lot as it looks so nice on the skin! It was around the £4 mark also, so once again I am not going to make any complaints about it at that price 🙂

So those are my reviews of what I bought, I hope they may be useful to some of you. As it is my birthday next week, I may be doing a bit of shopping after that, so I may do a haul blog, or maybe even a haul vlog! So watch this space – if I do a vlog, I will post a link to it in this blog.

So, yeah, that’s about it from me for tonight. I hope you enjoyed reading this and hearing my reviews! I will speak to you guys soon 🙂 x

Hello 2014!!

Happy New Year everyone!

I hope you all had a fantabulous Christmas and New Year! I have to say, I had a very quiet Christmas and New Year, but enjoyed them both very much.

So now, it’s that time of year again where we all make New Year’s resolutions that we will most likely not stick with for the next 364 days of the year! 2013 was not a great year for me. Uni had been very hard, I lost some people who I thought were my friends (not sad to have them out of my life though, I must admit!), my dad was diagnosed with prostate cancer (he had an operation though and has now recovered, and it looks like they got rid of all the cancer – yay!), I put on quite a bit of weight, and I ended the year with pretty bad anxiety issues and also retaining my single girl status! I am a firm believer in new year, fresh start however, and have my resolutions ready and raring to go. So here they are:

Stop looking for love! – I have been single for almost 9 years now after my ex-fiance broke it off, it was very upsetting and completely out of the blue so I did take it very badly. I am the kind of feel that has felt like I’m not complete without a significant other in my life, and I have been on dating sites/gone on blind dates to try and find Mr Right. Well, after having a couple of “close-calls” last year, where I thought things were going well – then the guys turned round and basically said they couldn’t commit to being more than friends, and me being hurt again, I have decided that I need to take time out from looking! I have deleted my accounts from the dating sites. I want to learn to be happy on my own, and intend to do some soul searching this year instead…see my next resolution.

Year out – I have officially told my university that I need to take some time off from my course, due to several reasons! Around the middle of January, I will be moving back home and looking for work. My plans for this year out are to work (obviously, as I just said that!), do some soul searching and “find myself”. I feel like I completely lost myself in 2013 and I don’t really know who I am anymore. I know the kind of person I would like to be, but I need to discover who I am, and experience living like a single girl! Maybe even go off exploring on my own (when I am working!). I don’t have many friends, in fact I don’t have any friends at home who are single, and so I don’t see them often. So, if I want to explore I really should enjoy doing it, whether I have someone to go with or not! I have wanted to visit London for so long, so maybe I can accomplish that this year?

Get fit and healthy – Ok, so this is always one of my resolutions, and I have never stuck to it. However, I am now the heaviest I have ever been and if I am completely honest with you, I cannot stand to look at myself anymore. I should not be the size I am, it doesn’t feel right and my health is suffering because of it too. So I need to get serious about this. I plan to start exercising 5-6 days a week, taking it easy to begin with. Maybe just making sure I go out for a walk every day, then build up exercising gradually. I feel far too embarrassed to go to fitness classes just now, but would like to start going when I have lost a bit of weight. I also intend to start cooking regular healthy, homemade meals. I have never been a big cook, and I am a picky eater too, so I would like to discover some tasty yet healthy recipes I can enjoy cooking. I plan not to weigh myself every week, I will maybe try to do this either fortnightly, or once a month, and I will also monitor my body measurements too. This time next year I hope to be a much healthier, lighter woman!!

Fun one 😉 – One that I have chosen to do for fun this year, as I am a big photography geek, I am going to be doing a Photo-A-Day challenge, which I will be posting on my Instagram and Tumblr pages. I usually always have a camera on me everyday anyway (you just never know when you’re going to have a great photo opportunity!), so I thought this would be a nice fun challenge for me to start.

So those are my resolutions! I really hope that this time next year I can look back on this and say “yes I accomplished everything (or nearly everything) I wanted to.”

I’m sorry I didn’t do my vlog for Christmas – I would like to attempt vlogging at some point, but maybe now just is not the right time for me.

I hope you all had fantastic Christmasses and New Years, and I would love to hear what you got up to, what you got for Christmas, and what your resolutions are for this year.

For now, take care and I will speak to you all very soon 🙂 x

Christmas is Coming!!

Hi everyone!

Christmas is a mere 3 sleeps away, and I am feeling very relaxed and festive now!! I am at home with the family which is always fab, have finished all my Christmas shopping and we even had a little snow today – what more could a girl ask for? 🙂 My mum and I have done a few present drop-offs so far, and only have one more to do, which will be tomorrow, and we are also going to collect our delicious turkey from M&S tomorrow morning – so organised I know!

So to get myself feeling even more festive/excited and hopefully you too, I thought I would give you a little information about what happens on my typical Christmas Day with the family:

I used to always be the first person awake on Christmas morning, and would wake my little brother up before we pounced on my parents! However, we now have a diabetic dog who needs an injection of insulin twice a day, the first being around 7am. On Christmas morning, my mum gets up to do this injection and basically stays awake until we come downstairs. I still have to wake my brother and dad though, and we can spend around 15-20 minutes getting dad to wake up, get dressed and go to the bathroom! My dad is the only person in the family who changes his clothes to come downstairs – we all stay in our pj’s (it’s the best way really??). Anyhoo, once dad is finished, we all head downstairs together and say Merry Christmas to each other, and the first thing I do is get the Christmas tunes on! I am an organiser, and so I begin by handing out the presents that are underneath the tree. These presents are from my brother and I, to mum and dad, and presents to us all from other family members. I start getting my presents into a pile by the radiator (because I’m always really cold!). I like to watch my parents opening their presents before I open any so I can see their reactions. Once all of my presents are in my pile I will then start opening them – I’m usually the last person to start unwrapping! We also get our dogs presents every year which we wrap up, and once we have all finished opening our own presents we will bring them out and the dogs open them themselves which is hilarious to watch!! 🙂

After the present opening is finished, my dad usually makes us some breakfast and a cup of tea (much needed by this point!). We all then sit and go through what we’ve been given, and if there’s anything we can play with/use/test we will do this now!

My gran and papa (granddad) will pop through shortly after to wish us Merry Christmas. (My grandparents live in a “granny flat” or annex which we had built onto the side of our house).We then start to tidy things away, as we have some of the family round for Christmas dinner. In between the tidying up, we usually have phonecalls from the rest of the family wishing us Merry Christmas, thanking us for their presents and asking what we got. Once all the phonecalls are done we can start getting dressed for the day!

Around about 1-2pm my auntie and uncle will arrive, and we have a second round of present opening with them and my gran and papa – this round of present opening is usually quite chaotic as there are so many people handing out presents! But it makes it so much more fun 🙂 Another spell of tidying up follows this, before we can finally start making our Christmas dinner. If anyone is interested to know, our Christmas dinner menu for this year is as follows:

Starter: Bruschetta; Garlic Bread; or homemade soup

Main Course: Turkey served with one scoop of haggis (we don’t like stuffing and this is a fantastic, tasty alternative!), roast postatoes, pigs in blankets and vegetables with a turkey gravy.

Dessert: Chocolate yule log served with either ice cream or whipped cream; apple pies with double cream or custard; steamed pudding; or meringue nests

We have bought in some Prosecco to have alongside our dinner too, and I think my mum plans to buy some strawberries to pop in our glasses too, for that little extra something.

The Christmas songs stay on all day long (no one gets to touch the ipod apart from me!). After dinner we usually relax for a little while before the board games or cards are brought out for some after-dinner entertainment! The choice of board game for the past couple of years has been Deal or No Deal – everyone seems to love it. Me on the other hand, I seem to be really really bad, so it’s not my favourite! But it is still a lot of fun to play with the family 🙂

And that is really about it for our Christmas Day. The family don’t usually stay too late – everyone is pretty tired quite early on, so they head off to relax in their own homes, whilst we tidy up and have another drink or two before we head to bed too.

We tend to have Christmas at our house every year now, as our oldest dog is now blind (it breaks my heart when he walks into things!), and he would get very confused if we took him somewhere else that he wasn’t familiar with. But I actually prefer having it here, as we get to relax a bit more!

I would love to know what everyone is doing for Christmas! Do you have any family traditions that you do each year? What is on your Christmas wish list?

I am also hoping to vlog my Christmas Day!!! This will be my first EVER vlog, so if I think it’s decent enough, I will try and post a link to it on here if you would like to watch it 🙂 And then I will try to start vlogging on a weekly/fortnightly basis after that.

My next post will now be after Christmas, so I hope you all have a fantastic time with lots of love, laughs and festive cheer!

Thanks for reading guys, look forward to speaking to you all again very soon 🙂

MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!!! xoxox

Little chat..

Hi everyone,

This blog entry may be a little sad/negative, so I do apologise in advance, but I feel like I have to write this all down.

Today I missed uni…again. I have been suffering with anxiety/depression recently, which is becoming more noticeable now. I am currently at the point where the thought of going into university everyday is, not terrifying, but almost impossible to comprehend. I have spoken to a couple of my friends at uni about how I’ve been feeling, but I’m not very close to them, and feel that they don’t fully understand or comprehend what I am actually going through or feeling. I have tried talking to them about it again today, but I can’t seem to get them to talk to me about it, and am feeling very lonely right now, which only makes my anxiety worse! 😦

The thought of going to university tomorrow fills me with dread and I feel like I want to cry. This is also made worse by the fact that uni are piling on more and more work in the coming months, and will have us studying over Christmas which I personally think is pretty unfair – especially since they told us that we would have nothing to worry about until our first exam (which is at the end of January), and that we could have a nice easy Christmas break. Since then, they have given us more and more work to do though, including one presentation before Christmas, a presentation 4 days after we come back after Christmas, and a 5500 word essay! I know I have to try and force myself to go in, but it is extremely difficult.

I try to keep telling myself that I will be driving home for Christmas (“driving home for Christmas, oh I can’t wait to see those faces”) next Thursday (19th). I cannot wait for that day!! 

I haven’t been to the doctor yet about my anxiety/depression yet, for fear of being put on medication which I’m keen to avoid, but i do plan to go see them after the Christmas holidays.

Oh, in other news, I sadly did not get the job I was interviewed for 😦 So the job hunt continues! But I’m also putting that on hold until after the Christmas holidays. I don’t think Christmas is the best time to search for a job. 

I am thinking of starting a vlog soon, somewhere else for me to vent and get out my feelings, and hopefully reach out to people going through similar things to myself! So stay posted if you’d like to follow my vlog when I start 🙂

I think that is all I am going to say for tonight. I’m sorry it wasn’t a very upbeat and exciting post, but I just needed to get this off my chest and at least feel like I was talking to someone! Thanks for reading guys! x