Friday, 30 December 2016

My "Best of 2016 Year" - Pictures Explained 🍾

I loved last year's best nine pictures and was so excited to do the same this year. Best nine is an annual website which uses your Instagram username to select your top 9 most liked photos of the year. 

Here's mine from this year and I'm not going to lie, I'm a little disappointed because obviously straight away, 4 of them are of Birchbox! Clearly, the hashtag used is popular. 

1. Louise Pentland, known as Sprinkle of Glitter on YouTube, and me! I loved meeting Louise and had the absolute best time. I actually can't believe that after having the opportunity to meet her and chat to her, I ended up winning her entire collection. That was such a crazy time and I loved every second of it. I even made a lookbook and took tonnes of pictures for a haul post.

2. 3. 4. and 9. Like I said, seemingly Birchbox is very popular with 4 pictures in my most liked. I love Birchbox, I really do, and this year I've got the monthly subscription box each month bar one. I love the products but mostly I love the boxes and how pretty and useful they are. My last month was the October Birchbox but I did just create my own at Selfridges which was the best!

5. Sophie's 21st Birthday! I had so much fun helping celebrate my flatmate's 21st birthday and she was the first of us to hit the milestone. It really was a fun day, despite getting covered in drink, but that photo is taken from The Vaults. It was such an amazing, magical location. I can't wait to go back!

6. Aww. This picture was in fact taken on New Year's Eve from 2015 when my friend, Hannah, came over to mine to be a part of our party for a little while before heading off to be with family. Hannah is one of my oldest, and is defintely my closest, friend that I've known since we were both 4. I posted this picture to celebrate her 21st and wish her the happiest of birthdays. As she's in Liverpool and I'm in London, it's a little tricky to spend each other's birthdays together.

7. I'm so glad there is at least one Christmas picture in here. It's one of my favourite times of the year and this one is of Covent Garden. In the market, they had giant mistletoe all over the roof. In fact, they went very giant there because their tree was HUGE too. It was a fun Christmas filled day because my dad came down to London and we went out for lunch before I went shopping in Covent Garden, Oxford Circus, Leicester Square and finally went to Trafalgar Square. I was so desperate to see Daily Bumps, Bryan and Missy Lanning, that I was constantly checking my phone but then it died so I went home and then they were literally at Covent Garden for tea just moments later.

8. I love my university room decor and especially this wall of a clothespin banner. I fell in love with the idea of these a long time ago and ended up eventually doing one at the farmhouse, which I did a tutorial on. I loved it so much so this year, when I printed off a load of Instagram photos in polaroid style, I thought it would be perfect above my desk. It didn't quite get done in time for the room tour but it did get added to the post!

It's funny to see my most liked photos and how it doesn't correlate at all with my favourite memories. I think this year for me, has been overwhelmingly filled with concerts and I love that. I love listening to music and hearing it live. Being a part of it and feeling the atmosphere has always excited me so I can't wait for more. This year I've been lucky enough to see: Ellie Goulding, LANY, John Newman, The Vamps again, The Tide and New Hope Club (thrice!), Gabrielle Ross, Kate Voegele, Tyler Hilton, Luke Friend, Bailey McConnell, Justin Bieber (with The Knocks), Josh Taylor, Jack Quickenden, Calum Scott, Jamie Lawson again, Ebony Day, Hobbie Stuart and Bastille (with Jagara and Rationale). Gosh that is a lot when I list them all!

Next year my goal is defintely to see fewer people aha but I already have a couple booked with Us the Duo and Olly Murs!

I think I'll always remember this year as my YouTube year. I'm so proud that I've managed to post at least one video almost every single week of the year. That is just such an achievement for me and it's so nice to be able to look back and see them all. I love having them all available wherever and whenever. I've also reached 60 subscribers and over 10,000 total views which is incredible.

I hope you've had the best 2016 and I hope you have an even better 2017. Happy New Years!

Wednesday, 28 December 2016

My Christmas Present 2016 Haul! 🎁

Once again, I had a wonderful Christmas and I hope you all did too. Just like last year I got many presents and I can't wait to share them all with you! 
It's defintely weird growing up because so many of your gifts turn to money and gift cards. Granted, I did ask for money but I do like opening gifts too! 
I got so much chocolate! My mum got me a stocking full plus a selection box. Stuart, her boyfriend, also got my the same selection box. Jess, my sister got me some of my favourite biscuits and her boyfriend, Josh, picked me up a yule log. Let's just say I'm set.
For flatmas, my flatmates also got me presents but I left most of them back at uni. Zhangqi also got me a chocolate box along with a couple members of Stuart's family. Sophie went totally overboard. She got me a Lush bath bomb, some fluffy sock, lip gloss and the BEST pillow. It's so soft and snuggly and heart shaped and I LOVE IT!
Mum went overboard yet again but this time they are super useful. I love this styling station that can easily hook to a surface and hold all the hair accessories together. I love my new clutch bag in purple! 
Sketchers were something I asked for because my whole family swears by them. Then I got some tights, some Christmas PJs (I think parents think it's a must), some socks, a hoodie, some beautiful earring and a gift voucher for a massage! Last year she got me a baking kit and I really wanted it to become a tradition and she came through with the goods: a brownie skillet set!
Finally, she got both me and Jess a set of home movie DVDs which were converted from the videos we had scattered around the house. I've wanted these converted for years and I was truly shocked. It was a wonderful surprise and we've spent a lot of time watching them over the past few days.
My sister - on top of the biscuits and gift card - got me this hair product kit which was sweet. 
My dad's girlfriend, Karen, got me THE cutest slippers. They look so warm and cosy!
My dad then got me this cute Pandora charm. Not going to lie, my Pandora bracelet is silver so I was a little put back at the purple accents first but it's not very prominent so it works just fine. He plans to give me money too.
I kind of treated myself to these with a small change of plans from my present giving aha. 
Stuart's brother's family, mainly Vicky, gave me money and this perfect personalised candle. It smell perfect!
My cousin, Emma, gave me some beautiful yet simple and LIGHT dangly heart earrings and some Christmas socks.
And that's all I got for Christmas! Wow! I can't wait to make the brownies....

Monday, 26 December 2016

Christmas Parties!πŸŽ‰

I've actually touched on all these in my weekly recap blog posts going up on Sunday's but the video footage is finally here!

I've kind of combined 3 mini vlogs into one. Click here or watch below.

It starts with my Flatmas (Christmas with my flatmates) and it was so much fun. We took lots of photos and had so much fun. Use girls all got everyone gifts but apparently Joe was unaware. Seemingly, no one was getting anyone presents until I mentioned it and then everyone had to rush last minute but no one informed him. Aha. I feel so bad! I wasn't expecting anyone to give me them back but I just thought we would. Oops. Drama!

I ended up throwing on some red lipstick and Joe's apron but we didn't really dress up. It was a nice and relaxed evening and so much fun just chit chatting after opening presents and popping open some prosecco.
Joe and Sophie ended up heading out but didn't stay clubbing for too long before they came back. I stayed to Lecturecast, pack and throw on one last wash.

Every year, the weekend before Christmas we have a meal with my mum's side of the family at a hotel called Rogerthorpe.

This year was no different but I actually didn't get many pictures of the vent itself. Instead, I chose to remember the graveyard visit instead. On the way, we always head to my family graves and drop off some wreaths. I love that my grandma does this and I hope we can continue on the tradition.
It was so fun talking to her as we walked around and hearing about some of the stories as she grew up.
Finally, we went to my dad's for a little overnight trip. I've been begging him to visit his family all year but especially since July when my cousin and her son moved back to England from Kuwait. It was so nice to see them all and the kids are literally so sweet. We coloured for a while first before playing a number of games of hide and seek and they showed me all their Christmas crafts!
Harriet, the youngest grandchild, was so sweet and shy at first but I was shocked at how LOUD she was. She's so teeny and petite but boy can she scream and I honestly love it. I had so much fun!

I just love hanging out with family. Stay tuned for the Christmas special next week! :)

Sunday, 25 December 2016

It's Christmas! Weekly Recap πŸŽ‚

After getting ready, my mum dropped me off at Cafe 43 for lunch with my oldest friend, Hannah. We had a lovely date and yummy cupcakes to finish. I love the cafe as it became a tradition after high school.

We then went back to her house to wait for my mum. it's always nice seeing her family and it was nice to catch up with John.

When mum picked me up, we headed back to the cafe because I'd left my scarf and then quickly packed an overnight bag ready for dad to pick us up. I love seeing family and haven't seen anyone on dad's side of the family all year so we headed to my Aunt's and Uncle's house to see them and the little kids. They were seriously so sweet and fun, despite the initial shyness. I love them!

Mum's internet is terrible so I'm totally behind on YouTube so I managed to catch up a little while at dad's. While waiting for someone to fix the washing machine, we watched a film together and then Karen got back from work. We headed to Xscape and went for the 3 course meal at ASK Italian. It was really nice but what was more fun was their take props to take pictures with!

I had my first PJ day since I was sick and it was the best. We had a family meal in the evening and then mum, Jess, their partners and I watched a film in front of the fire in the lounge. It was a really good film called 'Before I Go To Sleep' and I was actually really impressed with both the story and the acting.

I finally did some work and finished Lecture Casting the final 2 lectures that I've still yet to gone. I feel so much better but at the same time, I still have done any revision notes for this current NMB module and I feel so stressed that I'm so far behind.

My great aunt, mum's cousin and grandma came over for lunch which was nice. Robert, is currently living in Germany after moving out earlier this year so it was nice to catch up as he didn't manage to make it to Rogerthorpe last week. It was really nice to chat and they stayed for the longest time! We just talked and even delved into a little bit of family history.
In the evening we ended up taking Holly, my poor sweet baby, to the vet's because her cyst had come back. She was so good and luckily it was a really quick appointment. THe vet just drained the fluid but there was a lot! Over 50ml...

When we got back, we nipped to the White Rose Centre to grab all the food for next week, New Year's Eve and most importantly Christmas Day!

Finally a day to just relax! I finally edited and uploaded my YouTube video for next week and had wayyyy too much fun editing the thumbnail.

Is it Christmas yet? We had a pretty relaxing day just doing prep work for tomorrow in terms of food and my hair but then we headed out to my Aunt's house for a family-friend party which we just hung out at and chatted. My sister, her boyfriend, my cousin and I actually ended up going upstairs and getting away from it all for just a bit. It was crazy crowded!

 When we got back, we even did facemasks before mum surprised us with one Christmas Eve gift. So special.

It's Christmas! Stay tuned for the total blog post but I had lots of fun. We woke up early, opened presents, got ready for our meal and then helped set up nibbles and the final touches to the meal. When the family arrived, we chatted before sitting down and eating and then ate a delicious banquet. To end, we watched TV, chatted and then played some poker.