2015. I’m a little lost for words, which probably isn’t the best way to be when writing a blog post. In the least cheesy way possible, I feel I’ve grown a lot in the past year. Looking back, I started 2015 as I started 2014 – pretty insecure, feeling a bit lost and unmotivated. I don’t know exactly what changed or when it did, but I feel like I’ve become a different person.
I could babble on for ages about the personal hurdles I’ve overcome this year and how much happier I am and blah blah blah, but I think a much better way to look back on the year would be to pick out my highlights from each month, along with some of my favourite pictures. Looking back, it’s really been an amazing year for me and I cannot wait to see what 2016 has up its sleeve.
I started January 2015 with all my closest friends in our local pub. It was so much fun; I wish I’d appreciated it more as we weren’t all together as a group much this year. I think one of the hardest things about getting older is seeing less and less of your friends, however happy you are for each of them on the roads they’re taking.
I also had a little day trip to Bath with my friends Poppy and Connie for a day of shopping and catching up. Bath really is like a little snapshot of 100 years ago, filled with cobbled streets and boutiques.
February was actually a bit of an emotional rollercoaster. After having been in a long distance relationship with Joe for about 6 months, we found out it was about to get a whole lot more long distance. It was a really tricky time but it ended up being the best thing that’s happened to us, I think. It’s also definitely something that’s forced me to think about myself a lot more.
Of course, Valentine’s Day is also in February. Joe came down from York for the weekend and we had a lovely time just in each other’s company. One of my favourite memories from that day was that he told me he’d forgotten flowers (which I didn’t mind anyway), and then a gorgeous bouquet turned up on the door step.
March was a pretty exciting month because I booked Paris for Joe’s birthday in May (though he didn’t know it yet). I actually secretly bought our Eurostar tickets when I was staying at his house for a few days – another highlight of the month. He cooked me 3 meals a day for 4 days which was an amazing break for me as I’d just started working 2 jobs on top of YouTube. I took a well-needed break from social media and de-stressed.
In April, I quit a job that really wasn’t doing me much good and started a new job that I’m still at now. I absolutely love it, it allows me to meet new people every day and really feel like I’m helping others.
I love this time of the year because it’s when it really starts to get sunny again. My friends and I actually had a spontaneous picnic in our nearest forest and, though at the time it seemed like any other day, I think I’ll remember it for a long time.
I also finally bit the bullet and had my hair re-coloured. I’ve been pretty scared to touch my hair for years because of bad past (home) experiments, but I absolutely loved how it turned out and I’ll definitely be going again soon.
May was a really special month. Joe’s birthday is at the beginning of May and so I could FINALLY tell him about Paris which was one of the best feelings; we’d been talking about going together for ages and I was so happy to be able to take him. I also took him out for dinner to Piccolino which became one of our favourite restaurants, and Evil Eye – Johnny Depp’s favourite cocktail bar.
The general election also took place in May and though it may not have been the result I was hoping for, it felt really good to be able to have my say.
Towards the end of the month I had my birthday and my mum took me to Nirvana Spa. This has truly become one of my happy places this year, it’s incredibly serene and you always leave feeling rejuvenated. Joe also took me to see The Lion King which has to be one of my top 5 moments of the year. I went when I was about 5 and remembered it so vividly. I’ve wanted to go back ever since so when he told me we were going, I was so excited I almost turned into that 5-year-old again.
June was another huge highlight as my dad played Glastonbury festival, which means I got to go. Festivals, and Glastonbury in particular, are some of the best places to just be yourself for a few days and not care about what you’re wearing, what you’re doing or what people think of you. It was my third time going and it honestly just gets better every year for me.
July has to be my favourite month of 2015 because the best week of my whole life was in it. We went to Paris from the 2nd to the 5th and I have honestly never been happier than I was when we were there. There’s something really special about that city, you can spend hours just getting lost down all the different streets. I truly believe I will never get bored of Paris and I can’t wait to go back. You can read more about it here.
Another little highlight was when I threw a surprise leaving party for Joe. It was his last week in the UK and he didn’t think he was going to get to see any of our friends before he left (I got them all to say they were too busy to see him heheh), so he had literally no idea. His face when everyone jumped out was one of the happiest sights I saw in the whole year.
August was HECTIC. One of the slightly smaller events was that I started a gym membership, which sounds pretty insignificant but it’s become a real stress reliever for me. I can’t imagine going back to the limited exercise I was doing before; it’s one of the best things I’ve ever done.
My family and I also went to Southwold for a week, where one of my uncles owns a house. We go nearly every year and, again, I always leave feeling very refreshed and happy. The house is right next to the beach and, though it wasn’t all that sunny, we had a lovely time.
Shortly after, we went glamping at a place called Longlands in Devon. The weekend consisted of a lot of beach walks (not complaining) and eating by candlelight. I definitely want to go back one day.
A very special weekend every year is that of Avebury Rocks. My dad set up this festival as a part of the Love Hope Strength foundation 4 years ago and it’s become an annual event. We walk about 9 miles before an evening of music, all in the aid of cancer. And yes, then I went clubbing with my dad.
And last but certainly not least in August, we FINALLY found out who Big A is (PLL). I was pretty smug because I’d managed to figure it out in the weeks leading up to the episode, but I was still left with my hairs standing on end and tears in my eyes. I can’t wait for the next ep this week!
September was one of the most exciting months because I got to get on that plane and see Joe again. After 2 months it was nerve-wracking and so special at the same time. There really is no better feeling than walking through arrivals and seeing them standing there waiting for you. (Writing this is making me so excited for March). I’ll be writing a very belated post about Bergen soon.
I also saw one of my oldest friends, Sophie. We were the best of friends at primary school and ended up going to different secondary schools. Despite what our parents and other friends thought would happen, we have never drifted apart and have now been friends for 13 years. It’s one of those friendships where however long you spend apart, the next time you see each other will always feel like no time has passed.
Now, I hit a bit of a blank with October. I got back from Bergen and had to go straight back to 5 days a week of work, and as I’d just had a week off I didn’t really feel like I could do much else. I did, however, suddenly find the motivation to ‘finish’ my room. Now, I say ‘finish’ because I’d started painting it 4 years previously and never finished, so there were blotches of various different colours all over the walls. It’s now one of my favourite places in the world; I made it exactly how I’d always wanted and I FINALLY have a double bed. It was also quite an achievement because I had absolutely no help, financially or manually, putting it all together.
I also took a little Halloween weekend trip to see my friend Georgia at university in Southampton. It was your typical weekend: pre-drinks, club, sleeping on the floor, feeling awful in the morning, getting a train home feeling like I was going to throw up on the person next to me all the way back. BUT, it was all worth it, as always.
November was another work-filled month with not much time for anything else, but I did manage to fit in another trip to Nirvana. There is always time for Nirvana.
Something else that actually jumps out as a bit of a highlight was the Christmas work party for one of the places I work at. After only being there for about 6 months, I really felt like I’d made some lovely new friends and just spending an evening with them and getting to know them better was really great. (The picture below is actually from when we went wreath-making at the beginning of December).
One of my favourite family days this year was when we went to the cinema for a special Laurel & Hardy showing. It’s something we’ve watched together since I was really little and having a light-hearted day together was definitely needed.
December was just an incredible way to say goodbye to 2015. I started the month by waking up to 10,000 subscribers on YouTube which is something I never even dreamed of happening. To think that so many of you guys had deemed my videos worthy of clicking that subscribe button completely baffled me.
Joe then stayed for about 10 days and, again, after not seeing each other for over 2 months it was just so good to be in his company again. We had some lovely days out, went to see the new Star Wars film and had ‘our Christmas’.
Actual Christmas, however, was spent with my gorgeous family. I don’t think I actually have any pictures from the day (apart from a compulsory selfie with the nearest cat I could find), because I don’t see my family as much as I’d like to and there was no way I was going to spend the day stuck to an electronic device. My family mean so much to me and Christmas is one of my favourite days of the year, purely because I get to spend it with all of them (and all of the food).
I then finished the year in Essen, Germany visiting Joe and his parents who very kindly paid for us to stay in an amazing apartment for a week. Though it was a few days after Christmas had ended, there were still plenty of Christmas markets to wander around. I’d actually been to Germany before but I was only about 13, so it was incredible going back and seeing it all again from a whole different perspective. I really feel like I’ve seen the country now. I’m currently writing a blog post about the whole trip which will be up in the next week.
I finished the year as I started it – next to my best friend. We were actually waiting for our bus to the club we were going to (which never turned up), when it struck midnight. We were so caught up in the bus drama and why it hadn’t turned up and how we were going to get to the club in stead, that we only realised it was 2016 when everyone around us started setting off fireworks. It was incredible. Absolutely nothing like you’d see anywhere else, EVERYONE had bought their own fireworks and were setting them off on the pavement, in the middle of the road and even out of their bare hands. It went on for hours and I was almost brought to tears by the feeling of complete happiness. I don’t think the year could have ended/started in a better way.
So, here’s to 2016.
Happy New Year everyone x