14 January 2019

My 2019 Resolutions

Happy 2019!

We're just over a week into the new year and I hope it's treating you all well. I had a quiet new year, due to being bogged down with this awful flu everyone's been having, but it was lovely nonetheless. And let me tell you, it's so good to be back blogging! 

There's something so exciting about a new beginning; the endless opportunities, new adventures and new people you're going to meet. Although, the new year can sometimes bring crippling anxiety I can't help but feel an overwhelming sense of motivation. I only get this feeling twice a year; January 1st and on my Birthday. I like to think of it as a fresh start, a blank canvas and a chance to completely re-invent myself. 

At this time of year, it's important to set goals. If you're not setting goals then what are you really working towards? 

This year, I've set myself 10 different goals/changes to achieve/make, whether that be lifestyle, beauty or travel related. Some will be completed very easily and others may take a little longer, regardless I'm excited to get started. In a true yearly tradition, I'm going to share these goals with you. It'll be fun to look back this time next year and see how much has changed. 

My 2019 Resolutions

1. Learn To Drive

You're really fed up of hearing me say this, aren't you? Well, let me tell you that 2019 is the year. I can't bare relying on public transport anymore, plus now that I've finished uni there are no excuses. I'm currently saving up for lessons and hopefully, I'll at least be learning before the year is out. 

2. Go To Amsterdam 

Recently I've had this sudden urge to travel. I want to see new places, experience new cultures and go on adventures whilst I'm still young. Amsterdam is right at the top of my Travel Bucket List and this year I'm determined to get there. I want to experience everything the city has to offer and I'm sure it won't disappoint.

3. Go to the Gym

The problem with finishing university is that I've got so much free time and I don't know what to do with it. This is why I've joined the gym. I want to improve my fitness, lose some weight and tone up my body a little bit. 2019 is the year I focus on loving myself, both mentally and physically.

4. Stop Being Scared

I'll admit, I'm a bit of a scardey cat when it comes to most things. If I know it can harm me in any way then chances are I won't do it. This is one of the reasons I avoid learning to drive. Recently in work, my boss said, 'Meg, you won't do anything if you don't stop being so scared.' It made me realise that I need to be braver and face my fears. I know I'll thank myself in the long run.

5. Drink More Water

I think this is one of most people's goals this year and it's a hard one to complete if you're like me and think water is so boring. I'm starting on a bottle of water each day and working my way up. Hopefully, my body (and my skin) will thank me for it too.

6. Make Time To Read

Now that I have more time on my hands, I'm making sure that I use it to read. I want to spend my quiet afternoons sat in coffee shops, getting lost in a book. As many of you are, I'm also doing the Goodreads yearly challenge. I've set myself a goal of 12 books, that's one a month which seems pretty manageable to me!

7. Spend Less Time On My Phone

We live in a world where our lives rely on technology, in particular, our phones. I spend way too much time scrolling through Instagram, sometimes wasting my day watching other people live their lives. This is why I'm cutting down on phone time and focusing on me. It makes me so happy to say that my mood is already improving!

8. Immerse Myself In Blogging

Last year, I had to turn down so many exciting opportunities and events due to having such a packed schedule. However, this year I'm going to immerse myself in all things blogging, whether that be attending events, interacting with new bloggers or improving my own content.

9. Redecorate

It's been five years since I decorated my bedroom, so I think it's about time I had a little change. I want to clear out some of my old stuff, add in a double bed, a new floor and maybe even a new dressing table. I'm still keeping the beach hut theme though!


10. Hang My Clothes Up

I'm a bugger for washing my clothes and then just throwing them to the side. I never hang anything up or put it away and I know that needs to change. The jumble of clothes in the corner of my room is really starting to annoy me so I'm going to try harder to put things away.

However, my main goal is to be happy. I want to see the positive side of situations and not let other peoples opinions affect who I associate myself with, what career path I choose or what I do with my day. I want to be genuinely, intensely, consistently happy.

Here's hoping 2019 is going to be another lovely year!

Lots of Love,
Meg
xxx



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31 December 2018

2018 │The Highlights

Happy New Year Everyone! 
2018 has been a complete whirlwind. It's been a year full of success, a lot of celebrations and a few life lessons along the way. Unlike recent years, the high points have definitely outweighed the low points and I can truly say that 2018 has been one of the best years of my life. 

This year saw me achieve things I never thought possible. I graduated, went back to Disneyland Paris and finally walked along the cobbles of Coronation Street. I've seen myself blossom with a new found confidence and learned a lot about self-acceptance, especially when it comes to my skin. I also learned a lot about love; how I deserve/want to be treated and that I shouldn't settle for anything less. I've had a bit of heartbreak this year and it completely knocked me back. I realise how lucky I am to have someone who literally puts a smile on my face every single day. 2018 has also seen me reunite with old friends, put past arguments behind us and experience one too many crazy nights out. It really has been the best year and I feel so lucky to have met some of the most beautiful people, especially in this last few months. 

Tonight I'll be welcoming in the New Year the only way I know how, with a glass of gin and surrounded by the people I love. This time next year I hope I'll be telling you about 12 months full of love, more success and exciting travels but until then, I'm going to share my *many* highlights of 2018. 

Theatre

I started the year in theatre as I went to see three of my favourite shows in the first three months. As I've said, January to March was a complete blur so going to the theatre was literally the only break I got from the Library. In January, I went to see my all-time favourite musical Jersey Boys. It was so good that I went to see it twice in two days and was lucky enough to meet Michael Watson after one of the shows. 

In February, I took my Grandma to see the Rat Pack live from LasVegas which was such a fun evening. We saw Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin and Sammy Davis Jr and I don't know who loved it more. Then finally in March Mum and I went to see Wicked. It was my fifth time seeing the show but I could watch it over and over again. Along with Jersey Boys, it's definitely one of my favourites. 

Emmerdale Studio Tour

Fast forward to April and I'd finally submitted my last ever Uni assignment. As I had a lot of free time on my hands, Mum and I jumped on a train to Leeds and went to see the Emmerdale Studios. We love the soaps and Emmerdale is one of our favourites so to be able to see some of the famous sets, pull a pint in the Woolpack and watch how they bring the village to life was so much fun. Sadly, we didn't see Ross or Cain. 

Graduation Ball

In May, we had our Graduation Ball. It was a night full of love, laughter and a lot of prosecco. Not only did I finally go to the stunning Oh Me Oh My in Liverpool, but to be able to stand on the rooftop garden, overlooking the docks and celebrate the most amazing three years with the people who meant the most to me was the best way to end my University experience. I should also mention that I only got in at 4am and somehow managed to be in work early the next morning, still in last nights make up...lovely. 

This kicked off the best Summer of my life. 

I Got Published

Each year InTheRed, a Liverpool magazine for writers, release a copy filled with short stories and poems from Liverpool's best writers. I've been trying to get published by them for the past three years and this year, it finally happened. My short story 'The Date With St Clair' was published in the 2018 edition of the magazine and I feel so honoured that my work is there alongside some of the most talented writers. If you'd like to have a read, you can find the magazine online here

My 21st Birthday

My birthday was one of my favourite days of the year. From the moment I woke up, I was treated like a Princess. I've never been one to make a MASSIVE fuss on birthdays but my parents went above and beyond to make the day so special. The day was full of surprises, we went for afternoon tea, had a meal with the family and then they whisked me off for a special holiday to...


Cornwall

The day after my 21st, my parents and the dog took me down to Newquay for the week. Cornwall holds a special place in my heart and it's the place I've called my second home for the past ten years. To be able to celebrate my birthday there was the best gift I could've received. The sun was blazing, we chilled on the beach and drank cider on rooftop bars. I don't think I've ever felt more content. 
What a way to start 21! 

Coronation Street Tour

In July, a childhood dream came true as I got to walk down the famous cobbles of Coronation Street. This was another treat from my mum for my 21st and we had one of the best days. It's surreal watching it on the telly, knowing that you've walked down that exact street and knocked on all the doors. We also had fun exploring Media City and Salford Quays. I wrote a blog post all about it if you fancy a read. 

65th Wedding Anniversary

July also saw my Grandma and Grandad celebrate 65 years of marriage. They got married on the 4th July 1953 when my Grandma was only 20 years old and my Grandad 21. Here they are with their special letter from the Queen congratulating them on their Diamond Wedding Anniversary. They love each other more today than they ever could and to me, they're proof that true love really does exist. 

Graduation

I couldn't talk about 2018 without mentioning the fact that I GRADUATED!!
Three years of hard work, a lot of stress and a sprinkle of imagination saw me graduate from Liverpool John Moores University as a Bachelor of Arts in Creative Writing. I remember writing my 2017 highlights a year ago and thinking, 'this time next year, I wonder if I'll have actually graduated.' Well, guess what girl. YOU DID IT! 
I'll be honest, it hasn't sunken in that I'm not going back to University ever again and I miss all of my friends so much. However, the 13th July 2018 will forever hold a special place in my heart. 
The proudest day of my life. 

Lytham Festival

The Graduation celebrations continued with a trip to Lytham Festival to see Nile Rodgers and Chic. This was one of my favourite nights of the year as we didn't stop dancing for the entire night. I've always wanted to see Nile Rodgers and Chic at a festival so this was the perfect way to end what had been my favourite month so far. 

Meeting My Favourite Authors

In August, I went to my first ever authors event and met three of my writing inspirations; Giovanna Fletcher, Lindsey Kelk and Paige Toon. I've been reading their books since I was fifteen years old and they've inspired me endlessly throughout my studies. To be able to meet them, chat with them and listen to them talk about their passion for the genre they write in was so refreshing and completely restored my faith and motivation in what I do. 

Liverpool

September saw me reunite with old friends and spend a lot of my time in Liverpool. I've taken more time for myself this year and spent a lot of this month at the Docks, in Costa reading a book. If anything, I've realised the importance of taking time out for yourself to do the things that you want to do. I also realise how lucky I am to live in such a beautiful city. 

Halloween

Halloween was so much fun this year. I spent it with my work family and it was such a laugh. I'm so lucky to be able to work for people who I get on so well with. Apart from that, October was a quiet month but still a month full of change. I met someone at the end of October who completely changed my view about my life and myself. I feel so lucky to have met them and incredibly thankful that they've been there for the last part of the best year of my life. 

Heather's & London

In November, I was reunited with my lovely friend Jade. We took a trip to London to see Heathers the Musical (starring Carrie Fletcher) and it's up there with one of my favourite days of the year. Heathers was absolutely amazing. I purposely didn't listen to the soundtrack because I wanted it to be a surprise and it completely exceeded my expectations. Carrie was the perfect Veronica! After the show Jade and I explored London, taking in the sights of Oxford Street, Carnaby Street and she finally convinced me to go on the tube! 

Christmas In Disneyland Paris

And finally December, the month I returned home to Disneyland Paris.
In September Chloe and I decided that after two years, we were long overdue a trip to Disney and what better time to go than Christmas. It was a holiday full of pure magic from the moment we stepped off the Eurostar to the moment we said goodbye to Main Street. I'll never be able to explain how much this place means to me, the only thing I can say is that I'm incredibly thankful to have ended the year there. Also, being able to spend the holiday with my favourite roomie was even better. Chloe and I are literally the same people and we didn't stop laughing for the entire trip. 

Rugby With Dad

2018 saw me actually take an interest in a sport for once. 
Dad and I have spent the majority of our Friday nights at the Totally Wicked Stadium cheering on the Saints and it's been absolutely brilliant. Being able to spend time with my Dad doing something we both love has been a pleasure and I can't wait for the new season to start. 

Ohana

I don't know how I would've done this year without my family. They've been so supportive and so loving throughout and I can only hope that I've made them proud. I don't thank them enough for everything that they do; my Mum for bringing me coffee on those all-nighters doing uni work, my Dad for distracting me with the rugby, my Grandma and Grandad for consistently making me laugh and my little Buster for being there with a cuddle.  I'm so lucky to have them.

Friendship

I've learned a lot about friendship this year; it's not about the size of your social circle but the people in it. My Uni gang have been my personal cheerleaders since we met in our first year and being able to graduate together was the best feeling. Thank you for putting up with my many breakdowns and telling me I could do it when I was so close to giving up. Laughter is so important and the laughs I've had this year have kept me going, from our crazy nights out to riding bikes around Liverpool at 3am. I'm so bloody thankful to have had such beautiful people be a part of my year. 

Overall, it really has been the best year ever. I think the only thing that could've topped it off would've been if England won the world cup. 2018 has been my year. I'm thankful that I'm still healthy and that my family are too. I feel extremely lucky to have had so many life changing experiences and to have met some of the most amazing people who I hope will continue to brighten my life in 2019. I've got a feeling that 2019 is going to be a quiet one, but I'm ready to make it another good one. 

I hope you have a fantastic New Year and that 2019 is filled with love, happiness and a little sprinkle of pixie dust! 

Lots of Love,
Meg
xxx





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30 December 2018

What I Got For Christmas 2018

Well, that's Christmas over for another year!
All the rushing around is done and we're currently in that weird period where no one really knows what day it is. I hope you've all had a wonderful time eating pigs in blankets, watching films and spending time with your loved ones. I had a quiet Christmas with my family but it was lovely, filled with love, laughter and lots of gin! 

As I do every year, I thought it would be fun to tell you about some of the thoughtful gifts I received. This isn't because I want to brag but because I'm nosy about this kind of thing and I know some of you are too. 

I didn't ask for much this year, the main things were money towards driving lessons and a Saints shirt to wear when we go to the rugby. I didn't want anything that would be shoved in a cupboard and after listening to Martin Lewis speak about wasting money at Christmas, I decided that I wanted to spend time with my friends instead of spending money on presents that none of us would use. Therefore, I wasn't expecting much this year but Santa thought he'd treat me to some extra special things and I've been the luckiest little lady. 

The main present from my parents and the biggest surprise was a FitBit Alta. I've really been getting into the gym recently and they thought it would be the perfect thing to keep me motivated whilst helping to track my fitness. I absolutely LOVE it and I've been walking around the house like a maniac since Tuesday morning trying to get my steps in. 

Every Christmas, my parents get me another addition to my Pandora bracelet and this year it came in the form of Walt and Mickey. Okay, so I kind of knew that I was getting this charm because I picked it up when I was in Disneyland Paris but it has a lot of meaning behind it. We were lucky enough to be in Disney on Walt's birthday so not only does it remind me of that particular holiday, but that it all started with a mouse. 

We all know how much I love going to the rugby. I think my Dad and I spent the majority of the year at the Totally Wicked Stadium cheering on the Saints, so it only seemed right that I got a Saints shirt. This is something that I asked for but never expected to receive. It's even got the name of my favourite player on the back and I'm so ready for the new season to start!

Another surprise gift was a bottle of Marc Jacobs 'Daisy Love'. I smelt this perfume back in the summer and have been mithering about it ever since so when I unwrapped it on Christmas day, I was absolutely over the moon. It's the perfect fruity, floral scent. I also got another bottle of my trusty No.7 Stay Perfect foundation, a Saints mascot bear and lots of chocolate.

My lovely friend Caroline treated me to some gorgeous things from the Body Shop including my favourite strawberry scented hand cream and moisturiser. I'm basically obsessed with the smell of this stuff, it smells like calpol and if that doesn't remind you of your childhood then I don't know what will. I dragged Caroline into the Body Shop to smell this stuff so the fact that she remembered really meant a lot to me, and I also smell like strawberries all the time so I'm not complaining. 

As well as giving me some money towards driving lessons, my Grandparents very kindly got me a copy of the Greatest Showman on DVD. I know that I'm very late to the party but I've been desperate to watch it since January. On Boxing Day, it was finally time to see what all the hype was about and all I have to say is that the soundtrack has been on repeat since and I'd go as far as to say that it's the best film of all time. 
That is all.

My friend and personal horoscope reader Tori bought me a cute Tinkerbell brush and Gemini mug. I'm forever brushing my hair so a brush with one of my favourite Disney characters on the back slotted perfectly into my handbag and my new mug already has pride of place at work. I've really been getting into astrology this year and as I am a Gemini in every way possible, this was the perfect, meaningful gift. 

One of the loveliest things about 2018 has been getting to interact with different bloggers, meet new people and make new friends. I started speaking to Beth in the summer after we were both going through some relationship issues. Since then she's been one of my biggest cheerleaders, she understands all the girl struggles and gives the best advice whilst also making me cry laugh. We decided to swap presents this year and as she knows me so well, she got me a gorgeous ring, some nails, a notebook and the cutest Disney print for my wall. I couldn't be more grateful to her and I wish her all the love and success for 2019. 

And finally, would it be Christmas without some new additions to my gin collection?  
My boss very kindly got me some mini gin samples to try over the Christmas period, on the condition that I didn't come into work hungover (oops!). From the minute I finished on Christmas Eve to the second I went to bed on Boxing Day, gin was the only beverage I consumed. I've still got some little samples left over so I'll be cracking them open to welcome in the new year!

I also received some more thoughtful gifts including books, notebooks and a few more bottles of gin. I've been so very spoilt this year and I can't thank my family and friends enough for their kindness and generosity. I feel so loved and so honoured to be ending one of the best years of my life with the people who mean the most to me. 

I'd love to hear all about what you got for Christmas, because I'm incredibly nosy, so leave a comment or link me to your blog post. I can't wait to have a read!

Lots of Love,
Meg
xxx









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25 November 2018

Liverpool Christmas Ice Festival

We're officially on the countdown to Christmas; the Christmas Markets have opened, the John Lewis advert is on the telly and I'm A Celeb has started. It really is the most wonderful time of the year!

On Sunday I was very kindly invited to the launch of the Liverpool Christmas Ice Festival and it was the perfect way to kick off the festive season. Situated on the Pier Head, just in front of the famous Liver Building, the Ice Festival transports you into a frozen Winter Wonderland.


Returning for the third year, the Ice Festival is home to a spectacular covered Ice Rink, the UK's largest Ice Slide, an array of attractions (including the Ice Jet) and pop-up food and drink stalls selling everything from chocolate covered waffles to hot mulled wine.

Seriously, what's not to love?


We started our evening with a complimentary skate around the all-weather ice rink. Accompanied by the best music from Capital, it costs £12 for 45 minutes on the rink which is decent, if you ask me. As we tightened our skates, I watched people effortlessly glide around, making skating look so easy and graceful. How hard could it be?

It's hard, really really hard. 

Let's just say that ice skating and I don't go very well together. I was clinging onto the sides for dear life, much to the enjoyment of Caroline who found the whole thing hilarious as she skated around with no help at all. Thanks to her helping hand, I made it around the rink twice and let go of the side for a whole thirty seconds. I don't think we've ever laughed so much!


Although ice skating wasn't my favourite experience, the 45 minutes flew by and before we knew it, our time was up. The ice rink is suitable for all ages and abilities, with penguin skate aids available to rent for the kids (and some adults). However, if you're not too keen on the idea of putting your skates on, there's a viewing area for spectators to enjoy the view of novice skaters (like myself) falling over for your entertainment.


After my skating disaster, we wandered around the Christmas markets and watched as people braved the famous Ice Jet ride, the only one of its kind in the UK. We weren't brave enough to take the challenge, so we stood with some hot chocolate and watched as people were flipped upside down and spun around. Maybe I'll brave it next year.

If you're not a thrill-seeker, you'll be able to enjoy some family-friendly funfair rides or sit and listen to your favourite Christmas hits with a glass of mulled wine. I know I'd rather be spinning on the teacups, thank you very much.


The beautiful Liver Buildings are the perfect backdrop for this twinkling, ice spectacular. We walked up and down the small wooden huts, browsing the cute handmade gifts and taking in the scent of Nutella covered crepes. There's a wide variety of food on offer including traditional German Bratwurst, waffles, hot roast rolls, mulled wine and hot chocolate. It all looked delicious and I couldn't resist a chocolate and marshmallow waffle. I can fully confirm that it tasted as good as it looks.

If you're planning on seeing what the Ice Festival has to offer, I'd highly recommend visiting in the evening as it looks incredibly festive and magical with all the lights. Just make sure you wrap up warm as it's chilly down at the docks (we found that out the hard way).

The Ice Festival launched on the 10th November and will be running throughout Christmas and New Year until January 6th. It's the perfect event to get the whole family in the festive spirit. A HUGE thank you to the Ice Festival for inviting us to spend the day with them, we really had the best time. You can find out more information here.

Lots of love,
Meg
xxx











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