Oh hello, fancy seeing you here. Hey how you doing? Tell me about it, it’s been a year right, I know! It’s been forever, yeah we should have a catch up over a coffee…
You’ve all been here many-a-times with me, where I give you a big long catch up and a whole schpeel about where I’ve been and that I’m gonna make more of an effort to not leave it so long again. I seem to do it every time so I’m not gonna put you through that ordeal again.
I simply haven’t posted in year because I just haven’t wanted to. I’ve been the same with Instagram lately too, I’ve just not been in the mood or the headspace to make the effort. And if any of you have been feeling the same, that’s okay. I think a lot of people have felt the same with creating online because a lot of the algorithm has been ridiculous. Now if you enjoy something you should just simply do it for your love of doing it. But when you’re trying to create things and connect with people, it can be really hard to find motivation when something out of your control is affecting that.
So I’ve decided I’m no longer gonna overthink it with blogging and posting, I’m just gonna do what I want when I want. There’s gonna be no main themes or days for things anymore, posts might be long or short, it could be lifestyle to beauty, fashion or even travel. I’m just gonna do and create what I want when I want and I’m gonna see where it takes me and the blog.
It can feel like the world online is moving at such a fast pace, which it is constantly changing, but it can feel like you’re behind on the times when you still want to do things and post things that used to be popular and people used to connect with a lot. Shoutout to all of us who have been here since the flatlay Insta posts on our bedsheets days. Whereas of course now, quick short videos are more on brand and popular. As even myself, I notice even if I post a photo of me in an outfit posing that performs so much better than a photo of anything else I post 90% of the time. So it can be challenging to keep up with. I do hide my likes on IG these days but as the main user of course I can see how many people have liked it still but sine doing that I have enjoyed the theme of my feed a lot more. My trouble is with IG at the moment, I have so many photos I want to post but I like them to “look right” with the other images surrounding it on the feed. Which I know slightly contradicts what I said above about no more themes but hey it is what it is. I’m not perfect, just a human being. So it is a constant battle with social media these days when it comes to creating and posting and trying to engage with people in a way that they want to engage with. I take my hat off to anyone that does social media as a full time job or even part time as it’s so many things all at once.
Now I don’t wanna claim I wanna post this, that, and the other because whenever I do that I never do or I do bits of it and then lose the motivation for it. But I do have a lot of travel/ exploring based posts that would be nice to share with you all as well as lots of fashion things too. So I shall see what I’m in the mood for.
So that’s it everyone, just wanted to update you all on what’s going on and where were at I guess. I hope you’re all well, let me know below.
Hello my lovelies, it has been a while since I last posted and updated you on a lot of things in my life. The last time we spoke I mentioned to you all about something that was and still is going on with my health that not many people knew about because of my own mental blockages. However since that post, you’ll be pleased to know I finally found my voice and told my parents and went to the doctors and the mystery, even though it turned out to be along the lines of what I thought it was, is solved.
Please note this post was written back in May and a lot has changed since then. But I didn’t want to get rid of this post.
So time for a back track, last year in April time, the skin on my back and around where bra straps usually sit started to get really uncomfortable and irritated. At first I thought it was because I was just at home every day and not doing much movement because of starting lockdown season 1 (the best of all the seasons if you ask me) and my bras were quite old and had become a bit unappealing let’s say. So I decided to just not really wear one with being at home every day. But then my nipples rubbing against certain clothing irritated them sometimes. But not enough to be annoyed about it or anything, Fast forward to July/ August time I began to notice my nipples occasionally leaked. It started out randomly with both of them and I’d never had that before. I consulted doctor Google and turns out is a common thing in your reproductive years so I thought nothing of it. Then it started happening more regularly and only my left nipple was leaking at this point. It would happen randomly at any time, any place. There was no pattern to it. So I started thinking this could be a bit abnormal but it still didn’t completely concern me at this point. I told my best friends about it and they said when you’re ready you should tell your parents or a doctor about it. I began tracking the leaks to see if there was any kind of pattern to when and where and if anything triggered it, it ranged from 0 leaks for 5 days to x2 leaks every day for 10 days for example. It was very sporadic.
Also in July I gained a new symptom; I got acne going up my cheeks along my cheek bone area, which I’d never ever had before. Get the odd spot or two, but even as a teenager I’d never had acne. So I switched up my skincare thinking at first that might be the problem as at first I thought my skin was purging. Which is when your skin reacts to a product but eventually gets better after the purging process. I tried a few different products over 3-6 weeks as that is usually when skin purging calms down. But it’s almost August and my skin is getting worse and my nipple continues to leak. So we get to August, and I gain a third symptom which confirmed to me something hormonal was going on. I didn’t have a period. Now growing up my periods have always been quite irregular – they vary in the time I’m on the period, I occasionally miss a month because I’m pretty sure whatever cycle I’m on is not your monthly clock work one, they also vary in flow. Some months are heavy and some are light and some are a whole mix in between. So at first, I thought nothing of it. When it didn’t come I was like, okay, it’ll come eventually. We get to September, my acne is still bad, my nipple is still leaking, and I still have no period. But even at this point, I’m not worried. I know something is wrong/ a bit abnormal but I wasn’t worried about it.
Then in October something changed in my perception of what was going on with me. For those of you who don’t know, October is breast cancer awareness month and I saw all these posts from people I follow who were promoting checking your breasts and staying in tune with yourself. And I was doing the same, sharing things on my story about looking for the early signs and one of those was leaking nipples, especially if just one is leaking. Also during this month, I found a tiny pea sized lump in my left breast. So my level of concern had raised slightly higher than what it was before. Again at this point, only myself, Jake, and Chloe and Heather knew. So as well as tracking my nipple leakages and my period, I started tracking/ keeping an eye on this lump in my nipple. And I’ll be honest I felt quite isolated as I didn’t know how to tell people. I’ve never been good at telling people when I have a problem or when something is wrong with me so to have all of this was a lot for me to process. But the scariest thing about the whole health issue was the fact that someone else in my life could be doing such a normal activity, such as making a cup of tea, and asking how I am and I’m here saying, ‘Yeah I’m okay are you?’ When in reality I wasn’t! And that person at that moment in time had no idea about anything going on with me. And that started to scare me how easy it is to bury things away even when someone asks if you’re okay.
So here’s some symptoms that started to worsen in October through to December: my nipples started leaking twice a day most days, I also noticed that when I pressed this lump that it would manipulate it and cause my nipple to leak – so there was some kind of blockage, my acne got progressively worse and I was so self conscious about my skin. I only felt okay if I had some form of makeup on, that lump in my boob hurt when it was pressed, some days it felt like a hard ball and other days felt soft, we hit 90 days with no period which is generally when they say you should consult someone if it has been 90 days, I couldn’t wear bras anymore. My skin felt too irritated and uncomfortable so I opted for cami cropped tops (and I still wear those now), I began to notice my nipple usually started leaking at night time, my nipples started to become unbearably itchy and the itching felt like it was on the insides of my nipples as well as the outside which eventually progressed to both of my boobs, I had awful mood swings, really bad back ache, I noticed the discharge was clear but occasionally had a yellow tone to it, I started to get pains in my arm pits that were constantly there and that pain sometimes travelled from the back of my left arm to under my left boob to my armpit and under my armpit – felt more like an ache, the middle of my armpits hurt when my arms were down by my sides or when I squeezed them in. I started needing to sit with pillows under my arms for it to take the sensation away. My left boob’s side was itchy around where the lump was, developed a slight pain in the back of my left shoulder blade, armpit skin became sensitive when it had contact with my other skin, nipple pain, my nipples and areoles became flaky and dry and sore…
So as you can see, it was getting a lot worse. It’s also worth noting during this time period from September all the way through to December, work was a massive stress. I’m not going to go into it all but just know shit was going down and we were all drowning in it and it felt unbearable at times. But you’ll find out why this point is important later. So Christmas passed, it’s the new year and we’re in lockdown again and the overthinking starts again. This is when it got really bad as I knew this wasn’t going away, whatever it was, and that I was gonna have to say something. So it was building up in my head and I could say it out loud when it was just me but then the minute my parents were in the room and I wanted to say it I just couldn’t get the words out. Literally I’d open my mouth and my throat would close up and nothing would come out. But this is a mental thing I have as I’ve noticed this before. All through my life people have spoken over me, with anything, even my parents at times whether they’ve meant to or not. And honestly, I don’t think until this point I realised how much that has messed up my mental health because it meant I lacked the capacity to talk to certain people because I felt like it would get overshadowed. It still does happen, occasionally people talk over me now whether it is purposeful or not. But I’m also well aware it’s my own mind that has made me think like that. That when people don’t listen they don’t care about me or my feelings. Which in some situations I still do feel that way but I just try to focus on me and remind myself that no one thinks 100% like me and no one does things 100% like me. Which is why we have to be mindful of other people and other people in situations. I’m a sensitive yet considerate of everybody else soul which is a good and bad thing to be. But at the same time I love who I am and how I am and what I do for other people and how I treat other people. But I need to stop letting other people’s ways of thinking and doing affect my way of thinking and doing because we’re not the same. We’re all different in every situation, the way we act in said situations, the way we perceive situations and peoples action, and the way we respond to those things as well. And I’m well aware that my family and friends love me and care about me guys, it’s just my brain playing tricks on me into thinking people don’t because of this and that and the other. I’m very aware and in tune with my brain, so don’t you worry. The human mind is a complicated mechanism.
So anyway, the moment came like I knew it eventually would and I found my voice and I told my mum. And my parents did that thing where they say, ‘you should know you can tell us anything’ and deep down I did know that, but my own brain and way of dealing with it was warping that for me. So I told my parents and then eventually told my other friends and I felt so so so proud of myself. Telling people my problems has always been an issue for me. So to have finally been able to push through that was a big achievement for me. Opening up to people in the future will now be made slightly easier thanks to this time. The next steps happened so quick, after I told my mum and dad, we rang the doctor together and I made a phone appointment for the following week. I described my symptoms and what it concerned and the advisor on the desk suggested a particular female doctor to me so I went with her. I felt more comfortable talking to a female doctor considering it was a female issue. After talking with her she was pretty sure it was PCOS – polycystic ovarian syndrome. But to be on the safe side, she advised for me to have a blood test done and have an ultrasound.
For my blood test I had to fast for 12 hours before and I could only have water during those 12 hours. Honestly I found it absolutely fine, I’d never had a blood test before this moment and honestly I felt fine. If it’s possible I may even consider becoming a blood donor. So I had the blood test within the first week of contacting the doctor and then a couple weeks later I had my ultrasound. Which is such a strange experience when you’re not pregnant btw. As it’s so associated with pregnancy it’s weird when you experience it for anything but. Even though I haven’t experienced pregnancy anyway, haha. But if you’ve never had an ultrasound, my god it is such an uncomfortable experience. I had to drink 2 litres of water before my appointment within the hour before and you’re not allowed to go to the toilet because it helps for the scanner to see your insides more clearly when you have a full bladder. Honestly when she was pressing on my ovaries I really thought I was about to wet myself on her table. But luckily they were very efficient and within 5 minutes of going in the room for the scan it was all done and my bladder was relieved. But honestly I don’t know how pregnant women do it. As I know from experience this year that pregnant women need a wee A LOT. My friend Chloe is pregnant currently and she is very nearly in the third trimester already, crazy how quick a lockdown pregnancy goes as well, but I’m not pregnant and I very nearly wet myself in that ultrasound. So god knows how pregnant women drink that much and don’t automatically just release their bladder. Hats off to all my pregnant huns right now.
After my blood test and ultrasound I finally got to have a face to face appointment with my doctor and it was confirmed I have PCOS. From researching turns out 1 in 10 women have it which is shocking that it’s that common and I’d never heard about it until this year. And something that made me feel better was hearing my friends and family say, ‘oh yeah my friend has that’ or ‘my sister was diagnosed with that’ and it was just lovely to hear it wasn’t just me. So for those of you actually wondering what PCOS is and what it does to your body, I can confidently tell you. I was positive it was a hormonal issue which it is, PCOS is a hormone condition. There are actually 4 different types but the type I have is a problem with my insulin handling the sugar in my blood. So similar to diabetes but that isn’t what I actually have. So the sugar in my blood was very high which has been causing my pancreas to produce more insulin but it wasn’t being effective. When your body produces more insulin it causes your ovaries to produce more testosterone which can cause an imbalance of hormones in your body. Causing the main side affects of: acne, irregular or no periods (mine became the latter), excessive hair growth, weight gain, and trouble with getting pregnant. So the testosterone caused my periods to stop because the level of testosterone compared to estrogen was out of balance. My doctor said to me they knew it was PCOS from my blood test but the main thing they wanted to check was my uterus lining. As of course not having periods, where is all the blood going and what’s happening to the eggs? In PCOS you end up having more follicles in your ovaries. A normal amount is about 6 follicles in your ovaries waiting to be developed into eggs. But if you have PCOS you can have up to 20 follicles in there but they never develop enough to become an egg to be released with a period because of course at this point, I’m not having one. So the undeveloped follicles eventually bio-degrade I suppose you could say and then the whole process starts again. But you’ll be pleased to know that my uterus lining is fine. It is nice and thin as it should be and there is no concern in there.
So I meet my doctor for the first time and we discuss what we do next as once you have PCOS you can’t get rid of it. You can just manage your symptoms better. Doctors still don’t know what 100% causes you to get it as it’s a common misconception that overweight people develop PCOS, but it can affect any woman of any size and shape. The only thing weight can do is make your symptoms worse or harder to manage at times. My doctor was very open, honest, whilst still being mindful of the situation at the same time which I’m grateful for. Negative vibes from people who are supposedly suppose to be helping you is just damaging. As Heather and Chloe have had negative experiences with doctors and I’m grateful my experience was positive. So to shorten the treatment, I was prescribed a tablet called metaformin which is what is used for people who have type 1 diabetes to help manage their symptoms. At the start this was an anxious area for me as I never really take tablets, I’ve always struggled to swallow them so when I’ve had headaches and stuff I just deal with it in my own way. So my doctor asked me to just give it a go, which of course I did, and here we are now 80 tablets done and dusted and finished. I did it, I did it and again I’m so proud of myself. Got over another hurdle that I didn’t think I’d get over. But the doctor also recommended I loose a bit of weight to see if that also helped my symptoms improve. There is a chance loosing weight and the tablets alone may not help, hormone injections is an option but at this point she said to me she didn’t wanna give me injections when my hormones were so out of whack.
But I figured there was no point me trying to lose weight on my current diet as I’ll be honest it wasn’t the best, which I think is partly what caused this to happen in the first place. So my diet before consisted of a lot of saturated fat due to eating ready meals, high sugar content from eating too much chocolate, snacking all night long just because I’m bored, not even going out just for a walk because of lockdown. So first thing I did was cut out the saturated fats by making a list of my favourite meals and swapping out the ready meals for things to make my own dinners. And a lot of the other extras I had with my dinners were already low in saturated fats, salt, and sugar, so that was fine. I honestly feel a lot better for it knowing I’m making better choices for my body. I also decided to eat more whole meal things: pasta, crisps, breads etc because whole meal is really good for keeping your blood sugar low. And I love whole meal stuff anyway so that was again an easy switch. I now (most days) only eat fibre one sweet treats such as brownies, cake squares, red velvet bars etc because they’re low in sugar and low calories too but they taste delicious at the same time. I now only have other sweet treats as literally a treat or a special occasion such as my birthday.
Another thing I was suggested to do was intermittent fasting. My doctor said it is something she suggests to a lot of people with PCOS when they’re trying to lose weight because it’s not about denying yourself of having something you want, it’s about delaying when you have it. My doctor says she does this as a lifestyle choice and has done it for 3+ years now so she’s very knowledgable about it’s workings. But one thing I loved about my doctor is she said everyone is different so just do what works for you. So the first thing I actually did was not look at this as losing weight because even she said, telling yourself you can’t have this and that and calorie counting isn’t fun. Which it isn’t, there is nothing more disheartening than telling yourself you can’t have this and that because all you do is want it after that, because we always want what we can’t have. So when I started this journey I never thought of it as I’m trying to lose weight. I always said to myself it’s me making better life choices for myself, drinking more water, eating more fruit and veg, doing more exercise, and eating less due to my eating period being less. So when I started fasting it was before I went back to work but I fast for 14 hours every night from 10pm and I don’t eat until 12pm the next day. That still does work for me even now since I’ve gone back to work, but when I have days where I’m working 10-2 or 11-4 etc where I’m not getting a break I just eat something for breakfast and then I don’t eat lunch. So I now only have 2 meals a day instead of 3 and I do still eat snacks and treats but much less than I did before. Before I knew about the sugar issues I would eat a whole slab of chocolate no problem and now knowing what that is doing to my body makes me a feel a bit sick. I don’t think I could ever eat a whole bar in one go anymore. So yeah a lot has changed in the last month.
So you’re probably all wondering, where am I at now? I’ve finished the tablets as I said above and did my period come back? …
YES! SHE CAME BACK! Which is amazing as I hadn’t had a period since August last year, so I changed up my lifestyle for a month and it brought my period back and I personally don’t think I lost much if any weight but when I went back to work a lot of people did ask me if I’d lost weight. And I personally don’t weigh myself, I’m not about that vibe. And as I said above, this was never about “losing weight” it was about being more fit and healthy. Plus, weight fluctuates ALL THE TIME everyone. Also, my acne has improved so much! Honestly I’m finally at a point where I don’t hate my skin again which is so nice. But it is interesting as I’ve noticed from not sticking to my whole meal high food diet that my skin does act up when I’ve had more sugary things and more treats than I normally would. Which I have done that past two weekends due to it being mine and Jake’s birthdays. So although that is annoying, it’s not the end of the world. Just like weight, your skin changes all the time too. So it is what it is but I finally have confidence to go out in little or no makeup again. I’m yet to go back to my doctor for a follow up appointment after everything to see what’s going on in my body now after the tablets. From reading online, if they think you can manage your sugars without the tablets then they wont give them to you anymore. So I’m intrigued to see if I get a period this month now I’ve not been taking the tablets for almost 3 weeks. This time last month I had my period from 17th to 29th of April and I haven’t had anything come yet for May. So we shall soon see. I’ll keep you guys updated again once I’ve gone back to my doctor. But if you take anything from this experience, don’t do what I did. Always tell someone if you know something is wrong with you because only you know your own body. Only you know when something feels off or different. So find your voice and be open and just get checked. As luckily for me, this is something I can manage and although I was right about it being a hormone imbalance, you know it might not have been. It could have been an early sign of breast cancer for all I knew. So always, always keep an eye on yourself and get checked out if you feel something isn’t right.
Speaking of birthdays, I recently turned 24! Yes the big 24, I’ve officially hit the beginning of my mid-twenties and honestly, how did we get here? Jake has also recently tuned 26 (a week after me) and it’s mad to me that I’ve known him and been dating him for 2 years nearly. Life has gone so fast, especially in the last year. I feel like I wasn’t even 23 because the last year went so quick, I felt as if I was 24 in January and that was 4 months before I was actually gonna be 24. I had such a wonderful birthday, finally celebrating with the close people in my life this year! It felt so nice for us 6 to get together and to have a meal and a fe drinks. I’m excited to do that more in the coming months. Especially with indoor dining resuming. Ya’ll know I’m already ready for me Nandos. A lot has changed already this year, as in 2021, a lot of people at my work have left and moved on to other things, a lot of people in my life are now engaged, my best friend is pregnant!! So excited to be an auntie. A lot more “grown up” things have happened if you will. Even though I really feel your twenties is such a different experience for everyone. But I suppose the only thing that is the same for everyone during this time, you do a lot of growing and learning and discovering things about yourself and that you want that you didn’t know of before. During the second half of the third lockdown I really got to thinking about my job again and what I wanna do with my career. I know my job isn’t where I wanna be forever, it’s just a filler, but it’s been a filler for nearly 3 years! So I’m starting to think about what i wanna do and actually pursue something else. It’s been on my mind for a while but the uncertainty of lockdowns and COVID made me push myself back and say “now isn’t the right time to be leaving a job” which this time last year it wasn’t. But I can’t put my whole life on hold because of the uncertainty of not knowing. As that would be the same with and without COVID here. Also in November when I was really considering it because of stress and everything else we got thrown into another lockdown before Christmas. You know me, I’m a big believer in the universe, so I do think that was the universes way of telling me ‘no, stay put right now’ – it was very odd timing. So I listened and I did. But I can’t do that forever. I need to stop making excuses for myself and just start going for it like I tell so many other people to.
In terms of my actual degree I’m trying to figure out what I want to do with it. I’m always going to love performing and being a performer on stage will forever be a dream but right now I just don’t think that’s the road for me. Which is crazy as all through college and even uni it was the main thing I wanted to do. Who doesn’t when you study a drama/ performance degree. Crazy how your preferences change as you grow up a little bit and go into the working world for a while. So I’m currently brainstorming what I actually like to do and how I can apply that to what I already have. As I find I have a lot of passions and ideas and skills of different areas but not enough to know where to go with it or what I need to do to be qualified for whatever thing. Especially because some of the things I’d like to do a kind of more specific and there isn’t anything around my area at least for that thing. For example, I’m really passionate about young people. Probably age 13- to my age I guess. I know that so many young people have a lot of doubts, worries, troubles, and don’t always know how to deal with them or feel like they have no one to turn to. I’m really great at talking to people, I’m that person that is always there for everyone and I’m a great advise giver and listener. Everyone deserves to feel enough and like you matter and that they’re important and the suicide rates for young people who have barely even had a chance to experience life are on the rise. Which makes me so sad. I think because at one time in my teens I was at such a low point where I lost who I was completely, and felt like I had no one to turn to. I’ve always said I never want anyone else to feel as low as I did. So when I see another young person commit suicide it just breaks my heart. This year some people I knew personally and worked with at one time or another with drama have also awfully committed suicide. But the worse thing about those ones is it could’ve been prevented with a bit more care and consideration from the people who were involved. So I feel like we all need to do more and that’s something I think I’d be good at. So I’ve been taking a look into potentially becoming a drama therapist as it says online if you have either a drama or psychology degree then you can become a drama therapist. But I’m not sure where it extends beyond that. So I’ve got to do proper research and everything. As a lot of things around where I live are caring for older people or for children but I know that’s just not for me. As my small town doesn’t really have anything for young people in terms of their mental health as far as I know. Apart from going to proper therapy etc. So that’s something I’m gonna get to looking into.
My other career step is starting own nail business. I’ve looked to see if any salon around me does training on the job but I’ll be honest I already know quite a lot from doing my nails and watching YouTube videos. Being honest, doing peoples nails is best learnt actually doing it and it’s not like I don’t know how to do nails. I just don’t have an official certificate to say I can legally do it in a salon. Even though I know I have all the skills and all the potential to be amazing. Everyone has said it to me forever so it’s time I start listening. In lockdown I came up with the idea of starting a business of press on nails on Etsy. This idea isn’t new, loads of people are already doing it on Etsy, but every nail tech is different. Same as every artist is different. But I figured this will be a great starting point for me in term of pursuing a nail technician career. During lockdown I had lots of time and got working on my skill and new designs etc, I bought all my supplies I’d need and then I rounded up some testers to test them out for me once I’ve shaped and painted them. Which is where were at now. Going back to work has pushed it back for a bit but now that my hours are going down I figured it’s the perfect time to finally get back on top and get working on it. If you want a business to do well you have to put the effort in, especially a small business.
That’s where we’re at everyone. That’s what’s been going on in my life and my thoughts. But I do want you all to know I’m absolutely fine. I’m all good and life is good. How are you all doing? Are you back at work yet or are you currently switching up your career? How are you feeling with more restrictions easing? Have you managed to reunite with friends and family and other loved ones yet? Do let me know, I’d love to chat in the comments.
Hello my lovelies, who’d have thought Miss Rona would be renewed for season 3! To be honest I thought season 1 was an overkill. But joking aside, I wanted to do a post today to update you all through this mess we’re constantly fighting. A lot has been going on in my life through the last few months of 2020 and I’ve had a lot of things on my mind lately that I just wanted to discuss and share with someone else. What better person than you.
Lockdown, Season 3 has been the hardest yet in my opinion. I know a lot of people on my IG have felt the same. You guys know I’m a very positive person and I make the best out every situation I am handed in life but this time round I’ve found it so hard to motivate myself, I’ve been getting up late every day, even though I’m barely doing anything the days just seem to fly, and I’ve been going through a personal issue with my health for a while that I hadn’t really told anyone about until last week. So I’ve felt very alone and literally isolated because of feeling restricted of not knowing how to tell people my problems. I’m really not the best at admitting when there is something wrong with me to other people. Also, because this problem has just been a me thing, only like 3 other people knew before recently; it was mine for so long (4-5 months) that I kind of got lost in my head about letting anyone else in to know about it. I’d gotten so used to it being a thing even though I knew it wasn’t “normal” which honestly was bad. But the fact I have finally found the courage to speak up and I’m taking charge and sorting out my issue is a big step for me. So I’m incredibly proud of myself for that. I feel a huge weight off my shoulders now and I know I’m gonna be okay. Whatever it is and whatever the outcome, I know I’m gonna be okay. As I’m typing this, I’ve actually had a blood test today for the issue. I’ve also got to go for an ultrasound in the coming weeks and once both the results come back for those I’ll know what is going on and what the next step is to take. I will let you guys know more when I know myself. As you know I’m very open and honest with you but at the moment I don’t want to say what the doctor’s think it is just in-case it isn’t that after they’ve done the tests. So I will let you in on what’s going on soon. Hopefully it might help some of you guys if you’ve been going through anything similar to me.
In general I’m okay, I’m not in any pain or anything and I’m still able to get up every day and live life how I always do which I’m grateful for. As I said above, this lockdown has been more of an unmotivating one. January isn’t a month that many people enjoy anyway but I think one reason this one has been really tough is because that lull between Christmas and New Year just continued into this month for me. I don’t know if any of you felt the same? Literally 2 weeks after Christmas I just did nothing. Literally nothing. Which clearly my body needed as I was tired from working so many hours through December compared to the months prior with my hours at work being horrific. So I clearly needed the rest but due to that through most of this lockdown so far I haven’t felt the need to do much. So I’m on a scale of 60-40 I think – 60% good and happy in general and then 40% low and deflated some days. So I think lately I’ve vibrated at a much lower frequency than I’m used to. But you know what that’s okay. We’re all different and whatever works right now for each of us to keep us going through we should keep doing that. What isn’t helping for me is not knowing when I’ll see Jake or my girls again. I know we had that through the first lockdown, but so many of us expected us to be locked down because of how the rest of the world was being affected. But due to this one being so sudden: went from 2 weeks, to end of January, to middle of Feb, to March, and I’ve even seen some people saying it might not be until May. Which of course it’s good because if the variant in this wave really is worse than the first time round then clearly we need this. But to me it’s a mockery that we are worse off nearly one whole year later than we were in Lockdown, Season 1! 100,000 deaths is utterly ridiculous when there’s countries with more population than we have.
Now of course there are some people who are extremely selfish, general population as well as celebrities and politicians who don’t wear masks, who don’t social distance, who go to events or parties that are non-essential, who travel to Dubai for no reason whatsoever. Which honestly is an insult to all of the people who have died, who have lost friends and family, who have had events ruined or disrupted by Covid, who’s lives have changed forever due to this virus, to the people with serious health conditions who can’t even leave the house to go to Tesco, to the NHS and key workers who are working tirelessly to keep this country a float. I hate when people think they’re so entitled to think the same rules don’t apply to them. People’s need to be selfish and inconsiderate of other people infuriate me. We are all in the same boat and this isn’t going to go away until we all work together. To some degree I understand the confusion of not knowing what you are and aren’t allowed to do with the government in the UK not even understanding their own rules that they set out. As well as them being very illusive when making announcements to the general public as a way to make you feel like it’s your fault when you’ve done something that isn’t allowed in their rule book, even though they’re the ones who were not crystal clear in the first place. I get all of that but we should all know better. Our government can’t run the country and they’re selfish but us as the people we know what is right and what is wrong. If something feels wrong to you, simply don’t do it. That applies to Covid times and after them. We can do better together, we can be better together; I don’t wanna be in and out of lockdowns forever so we’ve got to give a little more if we wanna see the end of this. The vaccines are a great win in this battle, amazing that they’ve found something they think will work, but that doesn’t mean it’s over. Just because there are two vaccines at a 90%+ effective rate doesn’t mean normal life can resume. Please remember that over the course of this year. This is a marathon, not a sprint. We’ll get through it, we’ll see our family again, we’ll see our friends again, we’ll make more memories again. But right now be respectful to those we’ve lost, to the ones who are doing everything they can to not make that 100,000 go up by anymore, to the key workers who have been feeling the affects since this time last year. Stay safe by staying home, stay safe by wearing your face masks when out, stay safe by social distancing as much as possible. This wont be forever, keep positive, and keep going. We got this!
Over the last week and a bit I’ve started to get my mojo back a little by putting on makeup and putting on a nice outfit. I can’t tell you the good it has been doing for my selfasteem and confidence to actually get ready for the day. Even if I only do that, I feel like I’ve achieved something for the day and it makes me feel more in control of my day.
I have been doing what I feel like doing on certain days. For example my love for clay crafts has taken right off. I’ve been making a lot of trinket dishes lately which I’ve found so fun. Just experimenting with different moulds and shapes and getting the paints out. I’m just finding it brings me so much joy to be creative again. Also I’ve been painting a lot of nail designs as well recently. For Christmas Chloe got me an experience to do a nail course online as I’ve been thinking of following that path to get qualified to either own my own little business or work in a salon for a while. So I’ve been getting my Valentine’s designs in and I’m gonna create some more today. Also reading is a big love at the moment. Reading has been a consistent hobby since lockdown one but now being off work again I’m reading so quick compared to before. I read Blood Orange in 9 days! That’s wild to me. Usually takes me 1-2 months to read a book when I’m working. But now it’s taking much less due to being off which I’m loving as there’s so many books on my list. I’m currently reading His and Hers, I’ve got 3 days to finish it as I’ve challenged myself to read it in 10 days due to Heather, Chloe, and I starting our own book club together from February. Our first book is The Magpie Society: One for Sorrow by Amy McCulloch and Zoe Sugg. I’ve been wanting to read it since it came out and I’m so excited. It’s completely up my alley. So I’m excited for us to start that together. I’ve been ordering bits and bobs online as usual, mainly birthdays with the odd bits for me. I’ve also been doing a lot of singing in the kitchen and using that as my performance space. Finally watching all things on my list on Netflix – Bridgerton be my new favourite obsession. I cannot wait for season 2 and you best believe I’m already head over heals in love with Abigail Barlow and Emily Bear’s musical creation they’ve created from the show. It’s amazing to me how things can just become something. Anyone else feel that? At the start of January it was just a show on Netflix and now it has been watched by 82 million people and two incredibly talented women have written music for it to become a musical. Honestly I’m in awe of it all. I’m so excited to hear the full soundtrack after it’s all been made.
As you’re reading this it has just gone Valentine’s Day and I hope however you spent it and whoever you spent it with you’ve had a day full of love and happiness. Also a day of knowing you’re enough, whether you’re single or taken, never forget how much worth and value you have as an individual. Society has conditioned us to feel like if we’re not in a relationship then we’ve failed or we’re not doing as well as we should. Which is just so wrong but honestly I’ve felt this. I felt this all the way through school and a bit through uni and I felt it a lot when leaving uni because literally all of my friends bar 2 were in relationships at that point and it always felt like when will I be? When’s my time? Why have I got nobody? But I realise now as I look back, the reason I couldn’t have been with anyone at the time is because I didn’t love myself as I should’ve. I wasn’t accepting myself as I should’ve. 2019 was a great year for me, I let a lot of shit go that was constantly holding me back and I thoroughly enjoyed my life and lived every day. Something changed in me at 22, I had this new found confidence in my life and I felt like I was great as I am and I can concur anything. It was the first year where I wasn’t really bothered about dating or having a partner. I was still on dating apps and occasionally swiped along if I was bored or wanted to kill some time. I kind of got in my head, my future partner isn’t gonna be from Tinder or Bumble. Then at the end of April I matched with Jake, went on a date a week later, and the stars aligned and here we are. It really is mad how life gives you things when they are meant to happen. I still don’t know why Jake was the guy (the first and only guy) who I put my first foot forward for and went on a date straight away (within a week of speaking) and decided this was the one. 21 year old Katie would have never done that and that was just a week before. So my 22nd year was a great year for me. I had so many great moments and memories happen that year and I just wanna get back to that. Maybe because my 23rd year, i.e. Corona, has been so low I suppose you could say. Don’t get me wrong I made some great memories still when I could and I discovered a lot in lockdown. But I just feel as though this year of my life has gone so fast. I’m gonna be 24 in a matter of months and I just feel my twenties is flashing before my eyes. Did you know guys at 24 you’re already in your mid twenties, as I did not know that. Apologies if you didn’t realise that and I’ve ruined your day…
*sips coffee awkwardly*
I honestly don’t feel like I ever turned 23 as weird as that sounds. I keep referring to myself as being 24 already even though I’m not and I think it’s just hit me that I’m getting so old. Now I know there’ll be some of you here older than me replying to this saying I’m not old and I know I’m not. In the grand scheme of like 23-24 years is still pretty young of course. But I think it’s because when I was younger I always used to think people in their mid twenties had it all together. Let’s be honest we probably all did and now that we have reached this stage ourselves, it is evident that we really don’t. And I’m here to tell you that it’s okay. You’re okay, we’re okay hun! (Anyone else seen the RU Ruvision episode of Drag Race UK? – iconic) – I am here to tell you whatever you’ve got going on right now it’s okay. You’re where you’re meant to be and you’re gonna get through this. Even I have to keep reminding myself of this because I can get very caught up in where I should “be at.” Your twenties is a weird and wonderful time; people are getting married, having babies, travelling, moving house, doing uni, doing masters, getting into your career, working at home in your home town, or whatever it is. Where you should “be at” is where you are now. What you’re doing now and consuming your time with now. Don’t forget you’re wonderful and whether you’re doing a million things right now or nothing at all, that’s where the universe wants you to be. So just keep doing you.
I’m gonna wrap up here. This has been a lot wrapped into one big post. Hope you all enjoyed and let me know in the comments if you can relate, especially in this season of lockdown. Roll on spring! Honestly I’m so excited for all the spring outfits, the flowers, the pastels, Easter, all the Easter egg chocolate (already eaten 4, haha) and the sunshine with clouds in the sky! The rainy days that aren’t too cold. I can’t wait and I’m hoping were out of lockdown by April sometime so I can wear all my lovely spring outfits before it gets too hot. Have a wonderful day and keep safe my loves!
Hello lovelies and at very long last welcome back to a Mindful Mondays post. If you have been reading since my old blog then you will know I did a lot of these kinds of posts and if you’re new you’re probably thinking what the hell is this? Well to be honest it’s pretty self explanatory, we feel and do Mindful things on a Monday. That’s it. That’s the post…
No of course I’m joking, but the bit about feeling mindful on a Monday still stands. So practising mindfulness is something I have done since discovering it in second year at uni when I did a project based on the term. The mindfulness umbrella is pretty big and as an individual you can practice and relate a lot of different parts of being mindful to your physical life. So the things you do and the people you see and the events you have to partake in day to day. But you also have it in your mental life by the way you think and feel about yourself and others and situations you experience. But practising to be mindful is a great thing for our overall life experience.
If you do wanna see some previous mindful things I’ve discussed head on over to my old blog, katielouisejohnson, to check out the vibe of the posts. Previously we have discussed ASMR, our lives on the universe scale, the happiness list, relating to books, analysing myself, and these posts always tend to be very wordy and chunky but I love that as I really feel it helps you and I to connect.
So I thought today to bring back this segment of the blog and for some of you to enter this new journey of mindfulness and what it means to practice it; start with energy. I am a big believer in energy and energies about situations, people, moments, emotions. We’ve all had that feeling of walking into a room and knowing something has just happened and the vibe is lingering in the air. That is our intuition and reading of energies by feeling it within our gut. The intuition we carry with us in our daily life is an energy in itself, even if you don’t practice mindfulness often or at all, energy is all around us. For me personally I can tap into different energies depending on the situations and the people involved, not always positive but you can’t have all good and no bad because then our lives wouldn’t balance. We need harder elements in our lives to keep re-grounding us which in turn reminds us to remain mindful and thankful by finding the small things in the storm that spark joy and wonder despite how hard what we as an individual is going through.
I am a big believer in the universe, I’m quite a spiritual person if you guys haven’t guessed already and I have always been someone who puts their faith into the universe. I truly do connect with the state of being that the universe knows who I am meant to be and it knows where I’m supposed to go even if there are times which I feel I don’t. A big example of that is my career and my job. Whilst at uni I was so full of wonder and excitement for where I was gonna go and I think coming home to the literal come down of just moving back home and getting a retail job in my town really took it’s toll in the way of feeling is this it for me? It is hard especially when you see so many people you know or your friends doing incredible things along the lines of their degree and you do kind of have that low energy of “why isn’t that me?” – we’ve probably all felt it, not just with uni, but probably after many individual life events for each of us. That big shift of being so engrossed in a way of your life to all of a sudden for it to just be over and everything is different again. I think it takes a long time to rework your brain in figuring out what you actually want. I’ve said to you all many times before, being a performer will always be my biggest dream and when my opportunity arises I will take it. But for right now it’s taken me a long time to decide where to take my next step as I’ve always felt guilty if I step away from what I originally wanted to do. So when those thoughts start to go around and around in my head I feel stuck on what to do and then I don’t end up going anywhere. When in reality life is a constant flow of movement, it’s a bit like water. You can hold certain elements in a place for a period of time but eventually the flow begins again. My brain has almost been fighting and forcing me to feel stuck when in reality that low energy will only make me unhappy, frustrated, and upset. So I know I need to stop doing that because that lower/ negative energy will soon feed through to my mental space and out through my physical body.
In the ways of mindfulness, I’m currently directing my energy into things I want to do or I am interested in or want to try and do. You can only start small and work yourself up. For example, just this week for whatever reason I’ve been watching a lot of crafting videos. I’ve never been that creative in the way of painting on a canvas but I will always be creative in the way of imaging shows on a stage or how to make an area of my room to look appealing or listening to a song and imaging a style of dance to it even if I’m not able to dance it. I’ve always been a dreamer. So I watched some craft videos from a girl called Hermione Chantel on YouTube and since watching I have the greatest urge to create things and make something and have another creative outlet for me. I find the energy of us creative people also interesting because we constantly have people telling us we’re not good enough and for a while we feed into that and believe in the lies. But then something clicks and our whole perspective changes. Maybe it’s a growing up thing or maybe it’s this year but all of sudden the energy has shifted again and we’re experiencing our lives at a higher vibration. In the way of the negativity we once fed into, it can no longer touch us because we’ve gone through the turmoil that brought us down and we are now above that. Which means when the next drag comes down we will get above that as well because in our energy and vibration of our general being we already know we can because we’ve done it before.
Maybe I have an urge to do more creative outlets that are possible for me right now because I’m in a life situation where my performing life I feel it isn’t a possibility but these other ones I can potentially consume my time with are. Which is a great way of reconnecting with myself because I know I’m going forward with things I want to do. Even if it is just for my own benefit. Which all comes back to energy and re-grounding ourselves. Our whole being is based on energy and how we feel around certain life events. And I feel for many of us, myself included at times, this year we have all at some stage vibrated at a lower frequency. There is no denying 2020 has been a hard year for many and may be remembered as one of our most trialling years in the modern age. As I mentioned above you can have no good without bad because then life wouldn’t balance. I feel 2020 has been the year of events that will change the world for a lifetime to come.
2020 is a double digit year. These only happen every 101 years, once a century, and all of you reading this post right now this will most likely be the only one we live through. If you’re a big spiritual person you might follow angel numbers, I personally don’t have much connection in the ways of numbers and spirit guides as I don’t practice meditations to do that yet. But if you do, 2020 in that form is your spirit guides telling you to be prepared for what is coming your way emotionally as well as physically. Which on New Years Eve of 2019 not one of us probably could’ve predicted how significant this year would be in all of our lives. However looking back now I think it’s safe to say they were right.
I’m personally quite interested in astrology, but I’ll be honest I don’t know enough about it or it’s history and all of the star signs to tell you confidently about this whole of idea of 2020 having to be balanced on both sides. So our trusty friend Google will have to give us a hand. So it’s a day of learning for us all. So it turns out, the astrology of 2020 could be an indication of why this year has been so chaotic, intense, non-stop, and action packed from start to finish and it also turns out astrologers have been pre-warning us about this year for a very long time. 2020 has delivered a number of rare, intense, and life-altering moments that have shook up our foundations of life – personally, politically, societally. Forcing us to adapt to the phrase of 2020, “a new normal.”
From doing my research, astrologers have had the year 2020 as a hot topic of discussion for quite some time. Much longer than us as the general public would’ve thought about it. Many people, including world leaders, have labelled 2020 as a portal, a threshold if you will for humanity to embark on a new era. Narayana Montufar stated, “… The cycles of many different planets are coming to an end, bringing drastic changes that will unfold over the next 30 years.”
There is a rare and epic celestial happenings surround 2020 including: a series of super moons that happened from February all the way until May, the moon passed in front of Mars in February – known as occultation, the meteor shower drought came to an end on April 22-23 and May 6-7, there was a lunar eclipse on the 4th of July, the two biggest planets in our solar system, Jupiter and Saturn, took the spotlight in our summer skies in mid July in which they were closest to Earth in their orbit – appearing brighter, there was a perseid meteor shower at the start of August, the blue moon at Halloween, then having a moonless sky for a couple of days in December, solar eclipse to darken the sky in South America on December 14th, the same time that most of us experienced moonless skies, and finally Jupiter and Saturn make another big show of 2020’s celestial happenings on the 21st of December. They [the planets] make an extremely close encounter following the first winter sunset – conjunction.
That’s a quick run down of the celestial happenings. Of course there is much more information and deeper discoveries surrounding them all, but if I was to relay all that information this post would be ridiculously long. Check out both my sources to learn more, especially all of those events in relation to the zodiac signs.
But the new age all of these celestial events were preparing us for this the new era, the Age of Aquarius. My friend Chloe will be delighted, hence because she’s an Aquarius. Which begins once Jupiter, Saturn, and Pluto are all in Aquarius. (N, Montufar, 2020.) So why is this important? Well it’s a stand out point in our life cycle because for the last 200 years Jupiter and Saturn have been coming together in Earth signs. Focusing our energy on material gain and security. But in Aquarius humanity is set to focus on the innovative and socialist ways which only the air element can generate for us.
2020 has shaken up everything to expose the cracks in our society’s foundations. We’ve all experienced the shift in power and safety. This year is our training wheel for the revolution of the next couple of years to come which will change the way we relate to our communities and what we value in our society.
As I look back at 2020, that last statement rings a few bells in my head about the year. The Black Lives Matter movement being one of them – don’t get me wrong we have a long way to go in the battle against racism that I hope continues into 2021. Educating, learning, changing the course of black lives for the better. It was probably one of the biggest social shakeups of 2020 because so many of us white people, myself included, were so unaware of how unequal black people’s lives are to our own in this day and age. Which was honestly heart-breaking to learn about and discover so much of what still goes on today as it did all those years ago. So as we move into 2021, I feel there will be bigger and better shakeups in our society for minority communities for elements that have previously been swept under the rug. Which whilst will probably be upsetting and hard to digest at first, in the long run it will be so worth it and vital for us all to move forward to a more equal and happy society. If 2020 highlighted anything to us it’s that the way we’re living and the way we’re doing certain things isn’t the most fair or most sustainable or most cost effective or most kind. Whatever that thing is that we individually realised, ‘Oh I didn’t realise that was happening or I was doing that. I don’t like that or I don’t want to continue that.’ I’m sure last year we all had something where we said to ourselves that needs to change.
I’m feeling positive about 2021. Even through the mess in 2020 I was still feeling positive and although it was a hard and rough year for many, my family included at times, there was still a few key moments of love and happiness and excitement. So some key moments from 2020 for me personally…
I got engaged! This is still crazy to me that this even happened. I got a boyfriend at 22 and then some how got engaged at 22 as well. Sometimes the universe knows where you’re meant to go more than you do. I’m also aware most of you who read my blog probably don’t know much about this event because since relaunching my blog I haven’t said much about relationships and stuff.
But what’s mad to me is this year Jake (boyf/ fiance) and I will have known one another for 2 years as we met in May of 2019 and these 2 years have gone so quickly it still feels like yesterday we we were in the seeing each other stage. But honestly I feel very lucky and grateful to have someone like Jake in my life. I’ve never felt so comfortable with another man in a romantic sense in my whole life and the whole setting around how we met is also wild that it even happened. Maybe I’ll do a whole post this year explaining it if you guys are interested? But yeah, I’ve never had a man in my life where I’ve felt so comfortable to just be me and embrace my weirdness and I can talk to absolutely anything about without judgement and who makes me feel like I’m more than enough and can do anything. When you find people who feel like light – keep that close. Genuinely that’s what I feel I’ve found with Jake.
You know what, another highlight for me was actually the first lockdown. I’m very aware that a lot of people will not feel the same as me and that’s okay. If you hated every minute of it I completely get that. But you can’t ignore the fact that the main part of 2020 was spent at home. And for me I felt something special during the first lockdown, there was some kind of sparks of magic about it. I don’t know if it was the astrological elements but something changed in a lot of us. We were creating things, we were finding new hobbies, reconnecting with things we used to enjoy, we experienced life for what it was for the first time in a long time instead of constantly making plans and constantly moving from A to B because we had everything we normally do stripped away. We couldn’t make any actual plans of going out and doing things because we had no choice. For the first time in a long time we had to stay in the place that sometimes we only come to eat dinner and sleep.
I think the first lockdown had a quality of well this is my life until god knows when, because at the time it really was, and you know we celebrated birthdays on zoom, did online quizzes, we were tie dying tracksuits, making dalgona coffees, baking banana bread, some people even made online businesses that are still going on, everyone got obsessed with Tiger King and watched the whole library of Netflix, we had online movie nights, everyone and their nan was creating Tik Tok’s, Animal Crossing was everywhere, loungewear was worn every day, Joe Wicks became everyone’s PE teacher, having to cut our own hair (although I never personally did that – would be a hot mess), the constant this or that’s on IG (if you follow me there you’ll know I posted some like every day and honestly I think that’s what grew my account), virtual tag challenges, clapping for the NHS every Thursday night that gave a real sense of community, coming together in the times of crisis – not just Corona but the death of George Floyd and how that sparked the need for change across the world, Normal People, everyone was reading again.
For me it was just really wholesome to see people living their lives and there was a quality of excitement for life again as none of us knew what we were actually going to do each day. The constant life of 9-5 and having the weekends off is a reality for many but where’s the excitement. In your standard working life we only have 48 hours to do whatever we want and 90% of the time now people don’t even have that. I wasn’t put here in this universe to just work and only do what I want for 48 hours a week of my life. So to have all of the endless time in the world (at the time) to do whatever I wanted and to experience whatever I wanted and create whatever I wanted and be whoever I wanted was a really special time for me personally. Without the first lockdown I would’ve never realised last year what matters most to me and nor would I have known what direction I wanted my life to go in. The world physically stopped for us all to rest and reenergise and reconnect with our inner-selves and to then take our life forward for our outer-selves. So that will always always be special to me. So here’s some key moments and memories from lockdown season 1…
And then after lockdown, that also felt like a very weird time/ transition period because the majority of us had just spent 3 months inside our houses and then all of sudden it was time to go back to work and a slight hint of normal life resumed. When I look back now the first lockdown actually went so quickly but whilst we were living in it it, it probably only felt slow because we didn’t know when it was going to end. When I went back to work it was like I’d never been gone. But it’s also wild to me that we went back to 4 months of almost normality. Fair enough you know we still had to wear masks everywhere and social distance from other people but apart from that most shops and restaurants and venues were open and I saw the majority of my friends and Jake and I saw my family again. And even though the virus of course wasn’t gone in those 4 months and there was always a risk of us going into another lockdown (hey, lockdown season 3 episode 157) but it was almost like it wasn’t real even though we were so aware to the concepts of masks and social distancing. Does anyone else know what I mean? But when I did get to spend actual time with people, I also had some great moments…
You know what, despite all of 2020’s trials and hard times. I’ve had some of my favourite moments and memories in 2020. In the 4 months after lockdown season 1 Jake and I made more memories together – one being a cat cafe trip. Never been to one but I’ve always wanted to go, we celebrated my dads birthday, I took a trip in September to my friend Laura’s with our friend Jen to spend a weekend together and a few months prior that felt like a lifetime away and the fact it happened was insane and it’s by far one of my favourite weekends in 2020. Heather and I celebrated Halloween together like we always do and it was special that we got to do that again, my social media grew a lot more than previous years. Which was actually really nice as I enjoyed what I was putting out there and getting a great response back which gave me the push I needed to put more effort back into Instagram etc. I rediscovered my love and talent for nail art – so much so that I need and want to follow that as a career path. I’ve always seen it more as hobby through most of my life but you know what Corona has made me realise I don’t have time to waste. You know for anything, so if I wanna do something or make something happen I need to stop overthinking and just get at it. I personally just found 2020 so eye opening to a lot of things in my life and what needs to shift as I move forward. Let me know in the comments if you guys feel the same about 2020. Everything seems more special and cared about now compared to pre-pandemic life.
I no longer set resolutions, I set goals because you work towards a goal whereas a resolution feels like you have to accomplish it as soon as possible which isn’t a realistic way of working for me personally. I suppose my main goal for 2021 is to create and do whatever I want to do. Lately I’ve noticed myself get in a hole with a silly amount of excuses that I’m letting burry me alive. I don’t know how I’ve let myself get here but I need to start digging myself back out because I don’t belong down here. I’m great at supporting and rooting for everyone else but in the last 1-2 years I’ve become very bad at rooting for myself and I think it’s a defence mechanism. I’ve been hurt a lot in the past, when I thought people were my friends or cared about me or supported me and were in my corner and when it turns out they’re not it makes me not want to share things with those people anymore, naturally. But that has done this thing to my brain where I think no one is that bothered about me or my problems or what I’ve got going on so I just don’t tell people certain things. Which all that really does is put me in a box and makes me feel like I’m on my own and that I have to do everything on my own. Which I know deep down isn’t the case but it’s crazy how your brain makes itself think a certain way to protect you. I think it is really easy for people who have left university to feel like this because you’re floating on your own after that. So I think I’ve fell in the trap of I don’t know what to do or where to go so I’m not gonna do anything which is again counterproductive. Which I will change this year. I’ve got to because I know I’m not 100% happy with where I am but I don’t know how to start to get to where I want to be. So in that gap between the two sides I’ve got to find my bridge to take the first step on and keep walking. Just remind myself that I am worthy and capable and deserving of everything that is coming my way. Anyone else relate?
Tell me your goals in the comments and as you’re reading this we are well into 2021. This year will be a good year! Manifest it with me. It will be good and we will all achieve great things and more than what we thought. Manifest baby. The start of the year is very much going to be rocky, Miss Rona is still strutting her stuff but I feel the changes we want and need this year are coming for the good of everyone. We will all get through it my loves. Sending love and light and good wishes to you all as always. I’m excited to see where we go in 2021.
Hello my lovelies and welcome back to another festive post! Something that my parents have done since childhood is gift me a stocking for Christmas. As I’ve gotten older the stocking and the gifts inside have gotten smaller but the sentiment of it to me still remains the same. Stocking gifts are my favourite to open because you never know what you’re gonna get! So it really is a lucky dip and usually in a stocking its either filled with things you really need as an adult, things you didn’t know you needed, or the most random lovely bits and bobs that you didn’t even know existed!
Either way stockings are great and they’re a load of fun to fill with goodies! Continue reading for some stocking gift inspiration!
The stocking in itself is a present and something to be reused again and again for many Christmas’ to come or you can gift it to someone else for Christmas next year! You can buy a fair few incredible stockings now a days in all different colours, patterns, designs, and materials to fit any type of Christmas theme.
I feel like this is a given at Christmas time. Everyone loves receiving tasty treats, whether if it’s chocolates or sweets for you reading, it’s a great add on to complete a gift or add to a stocking. Whether you like milk, dark, or white there is a brand to suit everyone and a flavour to tickle everyone’s taste buds. My favourite chocolates anyway but to receive at Christmas time especially are Terry’s Chocolate Orange (top tier!!!), Ferrero Rocher (the dark choc ones are the best don’t even say they’re not), Monty Bojangles truffles (my favourite for a proper delicious treat), and of course Cadbury’s (a classic).
We all love a mini version of our favourite products! The Body Shop is a great place for mini versions of products as I’m pretty sure they have most of their shower gels and body butters and hand creams and lip scrubs etc in the mini versions. Plus they’re perfect for travelling for the new adventures in the new year.
A game, brain teaser, or puzzle!
Something to do on Christmas morning whilst you’re waiting for the rest of your family to get out of bed or before you have your Christmas dinner in the afternoon. Either way, they’re a fun way to get yourself and your family and friends involved in doing something that isn’t staring at your phone screen or TV screen for half the day. As let’s be honest, we do that a lot on Christmas Day.
A new mug!
If you guys know me well, you know that I adore a mug and receiving a new one as a present is honestly one of my favourite gifts. You can never have enough mugs, but my mum would say otherwise as would our kitchen cupboard, haha!
But there are so many fabulous places that sell mugs: TK Maxx, Wilko, Asda, and there are also some amazing independent sellers on Etsy that also sell mugs. Check out Miss Bohemia as she has every kind of mug for the cosy seasons and they would make a great present.
A new diary or notebook!
If you’re someone who loves keeping organised (to a degree) and writing things down then you would probably love to receive a new diary and/ or notebook in your stocking! This is a gift I wouldn’t necessarily say I want but I would really enjoy and be appreciative if I received one. I love all different kinds of diaries: small thin ones for my handbags, big chunky week to view ones to do all my creative planning in with stickers and all the to do lists you could imagine, and the month to view ones to help me schedule blog and social media content and keep up with what I’m doing for that. So if you enjoy using your pens then a diary and a notebook is a great pressie to open on Christmas Day!
A voucher for your favourite coffee shop!
Another great treat is buying someone a future treat! It’s just a nice way to show you care about someone and that you’re thinking of them. Most cafes and independent cafes offer vouchers these days to go and enjoy a coffee and a tasty treat. I adore receiving anything to do with Costa as a present because you all know how much I adore Costa!
You guys know I love a cosy vibe, if you follow my Instagram you know I go to town with all of the fairy lights in my room because I just love it. The ambience they create is just amazing and creating that homely vibe is great idea for anyone’s stocking or general gifting list.
I think Primark are some of the best for fairy lights as they’re always bringing out new ones with new colours and new outer shapes and shells etc. I recently bought some from their Christmas range and they’re battery powered but have a 6 hour timer to come on and off so you don’t even have to click them unless you wanna change the settings and they have over 9 different sequences of lights in one small set which is amazing. Battery powered lights have clearly stepped up a massive game this year as I swear before you only could have different settings and timers on lights powered by the plug socket. But honestly I’m a big fan; mine are in a warm white and they’re gonna be great for all year round. I’m pretty sure they were £5 or less too so a great add on.
Underwear, socks, tights etc!
As a child the worst thing to get for Christmas is “practical” things but as an adult it’s the best! I love receiving new underwear and socks in my stocking because as long as they’re the right size you know 100% they’re gonna be used. I genuinely enjoying having a few practical presents every year and I look forward to opening them on Christmas Day every year!
I get nail polish every year, whether it is in a stocking or not, it’s a classic gift. But they’re the perfect size to fit in any stocking. Plus, I always love updating my collection… I’m running out of space to fit them though (what else is new.)
I’m sure there are lots of other stocking filler gifts that are very popular with you guys that I haven’t said but this small collection are just a few of my favourites. There are also so many gifts you can buy to put in a stocking. I reckon face masks, hand sanitiser, and hand cream sales are gonna go through the roof this Christmas! Comment below if you still have a stocking every Christmas and what gifts do you usually get in there!
Have an amazing lovelies and I will see you back here again for another new post very soon!
Hello my lovelies and welcome to the first festive post of December!! I actually can’t believe we’re officially counting down to Christmas. How is there only 3 weeks until Santa makes his big arrival, even with all the restrictions, and then only 4 weeks until the end of 2020. When I say this year has gone so quickly I bloody mean it.
Today, as the title suggests, we’re making our own Wreath’s thanks to Wilko! This is not sponsored in any way shape or form but Wilko is the place to be this year for affordable lovely Christmas decks. Lately I have been on a crafty and DIY hype, so I have been loving creating things and looking at Pinterest for inspo and when I shopped in Wilko last I saw they had so many wreaths and all the accessories to add to them so it would’ve been rude not to buy one and create my own! So if you wanna see how to make a wreath your cat will approve of, then please keep reading!
Well first things first, you of course need the wreath. In Wilko they only had classic green ones, I think it would be so fun to do all different colours and even half wreaths would be so fun to create. But for today we’re doing a classic one. The first thing I did was make the wreath look fuller by manipulating the wires to all go the same way – curved around in a clockwise motion. The lower half of the wreath is much thicker than the top half which also helps for the layering of the items later on. So I just played around with it until I was happy.
I decided to add some lights to the wreath to give it a bit of extra sparkle and it really helps to highlight areas in the wreath that wouldn’t be seen as well without them. These are wired lights which I defo recommend for a project like this as they’re easy to manipulate and weave around/ in and out of the wreath itself.
I feel like this already looks better and this isn’t even everything we’re putting on it! I just lodged the battery pack at the back of the wreath for now, depending on how well it sits up right I may just leave it like that or I will attach the battery pack into the wreath. So if you’re following along you should have something a bit like this right now.
Time to start filling out the wreath! Starting with these holly leaves with berries. All of these accessories I’m adding on have wire running through them which makes them super easy to attach. All you have to do is find a placement you’re happy with and either loop the wire around one of the wreath arms or you can attach the wire to the back frame of the wreath. I did a mix of both as layering in a project like this is very important to add depth.
I decided to space them evenly around my wreath, but depending on what look you’re going for will depend how you want to fill your wreath. I personally found the more I added and the more colours I played with the better the wreath looked.
Jingle bells – Wilko – £1 for 5 or 6 in a pack
I think the bells were one of my favourite elements of this wreath. Because they’re so much smaller you could have them peak through the under layer of the wreath to really add that depth I wanted to create. So I’m attaching these with the green wires provided in the pack. Pulling them through the back of the wreath and making sure they’re even on both sides.
When the bell was centralised I pulled the wire back into a horse shoe ‘u’ shape so when added to the wreath it would be easier to get a closer and tight attachment. So I decided on a placement, turned the wreath the other way (the back), held the bell in place at the front, and then twisted the wire together as many times as it would go, and done!
I repeated the same steps with all of the bells I wanted to attach until I was happy. I had a mix of brass silver and gold bells which I think worked really well together with all of the other elements I added to the wreath too.
Again, I made sure they were evenly spaced going clockwise. Throughout the making of this wreath I sort of worked with the idea of going round at 5 points. So if you follow the bells around it’s 5 points going around the circular wreath.
These clusters of berries do a fab job at creating small areas of interest in the wreath for your eye to catch. I also love that they’re not just one colour or one texture. Again the stem is just wire so just like the rest of the elements I chose a placement and then twisted the wire around one of the stems of the wreath.
Gold leaves – Wilko – £1 for 3
Now for the larger elements of the wreath and I think less is more in this sense. I bought two packs of these as I wasn’t sure how many I would want but one set is definitely enough. Be careful working with these because the wire and the leaf are glued together but not completely solid. As I was working with one of them one of the wires had slightly come away from the leaf, so just be careful if you do get these.
But again, really easy to add in with twisting the wire around the wreath.
I changed the placement of these so much because I really liked the look of having two symmetrical at the bottom with one at the top kind of drawing into the middle.
I love pine cones so of course I had to add them into my wreath! These ones again have wires on the end so they’re really easy to attach. I feel like these really pulled together all of the elements and helped to balance all of the bits. Everything just seemed to work so well together.
And here it is! All of the elements added on and it looks so good. Everything has come together so well. I love all of the layers and the classic look of red, green, gold, and silver.
I also bought some cinnamon sticks to add that real wreath feel with a gorgeous festive smell. In real wreaths you often get the real pine/ spruce (obvs) as well as real berries, holly, orange slices, apple slices etc. So I just wanted a little something to give us that vibe. So when I saw Wilko also had cinnamon sticks I had to grab a bag!
So all I did was just lodge them around the wreath, again in that clockwise motion of the 5 points. I didn’t attach them with any string or wire, I just slotted them in and played with the placement until they sat in properly where they wouldn’t come out.
Although I could’ve left the wreath as it was I decided the finishing touch needed was a ribbon! When I think of a classic wreath or you see photos and gifs they’ve always got a gorgeous ribbon on tied in a bow. I have no idea where this ribbon is from, I found it in our gift wrapping box but I know we’ve had it for a few years. So I just took a generous length and I cut the edges at an angle.
Then I just tied the ribbon into a bow, making sure the ‘Merry Christmas’ is on the outside of the bow.
To attach the bow to the wreath I just took some twine/ string, if you’ve got some wire left from attaching your accessories like the bells you could also use some of that.
I loosened my bow ever so slightly at the back and folded the point into a ‘u’ shape and making sure the two lengths of string meet roughly at the same point. So now instead of one long length of string, you have two lengths with a folded end and an open end.
As you can see in the second photo, I’m holding the two opened ended bits and about to pull them through the ‘u’ shape to hold the bow and string together.
Pulling that string through to securely attach the bow and string together, ready to attach to my wreath.
I laid the bow down to decide the placement, I went for the bottom of the wreath. When I was happy I tied the string to the wreath stem at the back. I tied it twice just to make sure it wasn’t going to come off. So I just did your basic knot of the two bits brought and tied together. Then I cut off the excess string with some scissors.
And then we’re done!
That is it! It’s a very simple “tutorial” if you can even call it that. One thing I do love about doing it this way is that this wreath will not be 100% the same as pre bought ones because I created it myself. Honestly just such a fun activity, would recommend if you’re looking for something festive and fun to do or if you just wanna get creative. I’m finding crafts a great way to get away from my phone for a couple of hours so fully enjoyed making this!
Show me what wreath you’ve got this year/ the one’s you’ve made this year. I think one full of baulbals and like mini Christmas jumpers would be amazing! The ideas are endless of what you could create! Send me pictures as I’d love to see what you guys create! The best part about these elements for the wreaths you could put your left over bits in pot pourri or vases with lights for the winter months. Plus the majority of these bits can be used again the following year for an entirely different project all together!
Thank you so much for reading as always guys. I’ve got a lot of festive posts to come this month and lots of fun Instagram content too! So don’t forget to be following me over there @katiej0hnson if you wanna keep up to date with me and all my festivities. Especially from the start of December as I’ve got a special treat for you every day for 25 days! Any guesses as to what I’ve created?
I’ll talk to you all again soon! Sending festive wishes and December kisses!
Hello my lovelies and welcome back to another post. Recently I have been thinking deeply about a lot of elements in life in general and things that have happened this year, which is of course a lot. Probably things that have been crazier than what we ever thought 2020 would bring and I just wanted us to sit down together and reconvene and get on the same energy level together. I am always someone who loves a late night DMC (deep meaningful chat) at the end of a night out/ house party when you’ve drank more than your body can handle and all you want is cheesy chips (the best after a night of drinking.)
So I thought why not bring that vibe to my blog today. Grab yourself a drink of your choice, not necessarily alcohol, and let’s have a deep chat about life.
So I guess first we should talk about the massive elephant in the room which is of course, Corona. She is still out after 10pm and is now patrolling the “non-essential” isles in the Welsh supermarkets according to the government. But wittiness aside, there’s no denying that this pandemic has been an emotional ride for many of us in different ways and of course it is not gonna end any time soon. I personally think we’re going to be figuring out ways to live with it into 2021, maybe even for the whole year of 2021. Which I’m not saying to upset or scare any of you, as I know a lot of people don’t like it and don’t always wanna talk about it because it’s happening and it’s real and it’s every where you look and go etc. And I know for some of you and some of my close friends, it’s quite a triggering thing, of course, a pandemic isn’t something any of us probably thought we’d live through/ go through in our life time. As of course you hear about things in history and what has happened but you just don’t, you know think to yourself when you’re walking to work in the morning, ‘Oh next year maybe we’ll be in a global pandemic battling a virus.’
I saw Heather and Chloe the other day and we were talking about how crazy it is to think how quick the time has gone since lockdown. It’s mad to me that I’ve been back at work since June and then seeing friends and family again since late June. Now we’re approaching the end of October, going into November, and then onto Christmas, and almost one year of Covid being a part of our universe. I think sometimes, until you’re directly affected by something it can feel like it’s not real. Or we all do that thing where we know it’s around and it happens but “it’ll never happen to us.” Which we’re defo all guilty of. I was the same when both my mum and dad got ill, last year and two years ago. Those moments always stick with you and re-ground you almost. When both my parents were ill and had to go into hospital it really highlighted to me how much they truly mean and are needed in my life and how much I am not ready to not have them with me. When I was a teenager I took them for granted quite a bit, which let’s be honest, when you’re a teenager you’re only really thinking about you and what you’re going through and how to deal with yourself. That’s how I felt as a teenager until I was 18 and then went off to uni. But it wasn’t until I moved back home afterwards that I realised how much I couldn’t do without them.
Now I do look back at moments in time where I was quite snappy and could be harsh in my tones with my parents and although I know it was just me growing up and figuring out me. I think back and go, ‘Oh why did you do that?’ because obviously I would never act quite like that anymore. I think definitely when you start to grow up and your parents are still getting older as well, you do you start to wake up and realise they wont be here for your whole life. Which to me is quite scary, I don’t know about the rest of you, but your parents are the first people in your life, they’re the first people you know, the first people that get to love you and get to know you, and learn about who you are as a person and that’s the same for when we’re all born too. Our parents are the first people we meet, the first people we get to know, and learn from, and love, and hear stories from, and experience life with. Which of course my mum, dad, and I still do now. We still go out just the 3 of us just like when I was younger which feels a lot more special now than what it did then. I think when you experience them going through something out of everyone’s control, including theirs, you just have to put your faith in the universe by being positive and just enjoying existing together in a space and in a time because you don’t know when that will be gone. Fortunately for me and my family the health scares of my mum and dad ended positively and they’re still here, which I’m forever thankful to the universe for.
I think one thing that Covid has taught us and is still teaching us is how much people matter. How time is precious and moments are magical but you don’t know you’re in one until it’s over. But just how much family and friends matter in our lives. I have been much more grateful ever since I came into my early twenties and this year it has been more important to be grateful for what we all have. I am grateful for all my family and my friends and Jake, and for my cats, to be earning money still, to have a place I call home, for my health, for life’s little luxuries. I’m just so so grateful to still be here and that all my loved ones are still here and we’re in good health. This virus has claimed so many lives, definitely more than any of us ever thought probably, which is utterly devastating and it breaks my heart to know so many people have lost their lives to something that could’ve been prevented or might have been spread less if we’d have all worked more efficiently in the beginning. But there is no point looking back and feeling regretful about what we didn’t do because what matters now is what we are doing and about moving forward. But also remembering as we’re moving forward and seeing our family and friends again and getting to do more things again compared to a few months ago is how lucky we all still are to be here. We’re going through a pandemic and we’re still here, still fighting, still pushing, still changing, still growing.
I read today that France is in a national lockdown again and of course Wales are in a 2 week lockdown here in the UK and up north are under much stricter restrictions compared to where I am down in the midlands. I also know that London has recently moved into tier 2 of the new restrictions system. It’s a weird feeling seeing places go back into lockdowns because for those 3 months or however many months you were in lockdown in your own country, we had no idea when it was going to end. We all entered an unknown phase of life and now seeing places go back into lockdowns kind of feels a bit like ground hog day. When I think back to lockdown it was such a special time and it has definitely affected people individually. It’s the one event in our lifetime that everyone will feel differently about. I personally enjoyed lockdown, I enjoyed the time off to rediscover myself and what I want and how I want to be living my life. Also what matters most and who matters most and it was just lovely to do whatever I felt like doing every day. Of course not every single day was easy, I missed Jake and my friends and family terribly but that’s why I am so grateful for social media. Without that I wouldn’t have been able to do half of the things I did over lockdown without it. It was really heartfelt to see a lot of us reconnect with old hobbies and discover new things we enjoy and start new hobbies and new traditions and just experience our lives at a slower pace without judgement from others and we got to do things just for the love and the joy in our hearts for doing them. As I’m someone who can get quite stressed about not being good enough to do something. If I can’t do something within the first few times I get frustrated with myself and then I get an anxiety about showing other people what I’m doing or have done, especially if they’re watching me doing something as me, not as like a performer or performance.
I can get quite in my head about those types of things these days which is actually not very healthy for me and I know it’s not because it puts me in such a negative rut about what to do and how I do things etc. So I really dislike that my mind has made me think and feel that way about certain things so I know I need to keep working on that for my own mental health. I don’t think what helps is that I’ve always been someone who has compared myself to others or not felt as good as someone else who does something or is doing something similar to me or what I want to do. Which is a bad way to think and be with myself as I know in my heart I’m good enough to do whatever I set my mind to do. But that old way of thinking and voice still sits there sometimes and it can affect me really badly. So I’m really trying my best to get out of that. Which for me is why my lockdown experience was so special because I gave myself the chance to rediscover me and what I enjoy doing and want to do more of without judgement from my own mind because I had no one to compare myself to. It was just me, myself, and I. Which I now need to apply that experience to my every day life when I’m doing things and going for opportunities because the only person I need to prove anything to is myself. Anyone else felt the same? So my lockdown experience was really special for that very reason. Now we’re in the second one here in the UK until early December (potentially) I don’t think it’s going to be quite the same as that because; I don’t know if this is the same for you guys, but in the first lockdown I never knew what that really meant. As in I didn’t know if it literally meant the whole world was gonna stop. Which of course not completely because we all need food. But the first time was completely unexperienced territory which is why when I was in it I really reconnected with me by doing all the things I want to do but sometimes “don’t find the time to do” because just before lockdown, all I did was go to work and see friends and see Jake. Which is fine but that way of living for me, looking back now, didn’t give me enough fulfilment because I was doing nothing just for me. So I think having an unknown (at the time) amount of days to do whatever felt natural and act however you felt and create whatever you want and experience whatever you wanted (within reason) and not have to worry about money (due to furlough for me personally – very grateful) and not having to worry about working and having enough money to pay for bills etc. It was honestly such a liberating thing for me and it really felt like the world had slowed me down for me to rediscover me at my core. Since going back to work, I have kept up a lot of the activities I really enjoyed getting back into over the summer. Such as reading, I’ve read so many books this year compared to previous years and I have the time in lockdown to thank for that. Now I read a little bit every day or every other day and I usually read just before I get in the bath or when I’m in the bath so I love that I’m keeping that in my daily routine. However also since going back to work, there has been some stresses these last couple months and that has been quite a negative drain on me personally. So to now have another month off to not have to deal with that is actually really nice. Which is not how many people feel about this second lockdown.
But as I was saying, I feel like this time doesn’t have that special element of what we’ll discover and what we’ll do with our time because, A) it’s not a proper lockdown as quite a lot of “non essential” places are still open, B) schools are still open, and C) we think we know when it will end but I personally think that will be subjected to change. So it’s not quite as unique as the first time round I’ll say. But I am very excited to be getting all festive a month early. Don’t even come for me ya’ll with the state of this year all of the “rules” are off. The other day I put some festive lights up, was listening to Christmas songs all day, and even wore my WHAM Christmas jumper. November has never felt so good! Have any of you put your trees up/ your decks up? Let me know in the comments! A wintery pre-Christmas room tour will be coming soon.
But honestly I am so excited for Christmas. I get excited for Christmas every year, you know me, but I think this year feels extra special because it’s the one event that wont get cancelled. Of course it’s not going to be how a lot of us normally do Christmas with social distancing and the rules changing all the time but Christmas will still happen because it’s an annual event that so many people celebrate around the world. I think we will have to adapt and work a lot harder to make Christmas as special as it always is. But really for me Christmas is about the magic and feel of the season and letting people know how much they matter. It’s a season to give back in whatever way you can and I think one thing the UK do really well as a whole is come together when things get tough and I’m sure this festive season will be no different. So if we have to do Christmas dinner on zoom or gift giving only small things because of postage then that’s what we’ll do. I think a lot of people feel pressure around Christmas time to fit everything in because it is a lot to do in like 24 days and I feel we all try to do Christmas as big and as good as we can. I know that I do anyway, I feel like each year I step it up a notch because I just adore this time of year so much. I love absolutely everything about it but it does mean I get quite excessive with decor, plans, gifts, the lot. So I just wanna say to you all, don’t put pressure on yourself this time of year. You shouldn’t anyway but especially because of this year, just enjoy the run up to Christmas for what it is and it doesn’t matter how much you get done or how much you don’t. All that matters is your happiness and your health and your loved ones. But I am so so excited! I think I need to get thinking of some Christmas content ideas for here and IG. As if I do go back to work in December then we all know it’s gonna be manic and crazy and hopefully the hours will be much better when we reopen. But it will mean December will just run away with me. Honestly my future career I really hope I can take the majority of December off to just enjoy the season as it is my absolute favourite. But this year I’m also really excited to make more content and post more content as in previous years I’ve been so busy that it’s been the last thing on my mind and I’ve blinked and it’s over. So I want to make sure this year that I fully embrace the season and make the most of these next couple of months. So expect to see some fun and creative A/W content as well as lots of Christmas bits too!
There has been another big event happen in the the last week which was the American election. Hello to all my American readers. Joe Biden and Kamala Harris being elected is by far some of the best worldly news of 2020. I feel like with voting when something has always been the same way, a bit like in the UK with the conservatives always being in power, you always have faith that something or someone will prevail and create something better. But there’s always that doubt in your mind of but this is how it’s always been and whilst people complain nothing seems to change. So with Trump being elected I was always 50/50 about if he would get in or not. It would’ve been one of those situations of disappointed but not surprised. But honestly I couldn’t be happier that Joe and Kamala have been elected and it just goes to show if you believe in a dream enough it can become a reality. It’s one of those potential life moments that you can imagine but sadly never turns out to be real, like myself when I was younger imagining I was going to win the X-Factor and the winners montage song be Greatest Day by Take That. No I haven’t replayed this scenario in my head, what do you mean?
But honestly I am so excited to see where Joe and Kamala take America. The country is in a massive state of divide and there’s a lot of social injustice going on in America right now and one of Joe’s main points is bringing the American people back together regardless of race, gender, sexuality, ethnicity, and I’m looking forward to seeing how that will be played out over the next four years. Plus something incredible to happen, Kamala Harris the first female vice president – amazing! But with extra sparkle on the top, the first female vice president who is black and of Asian descent. I can’t even begin to express how vital this is, especially right now with the physical violence when it comes to racism and how women are always being targeted just for being a woman. Honestly this is a moment in our history for the world to be in awe of, not just America. Of course it’s not going to be the easiest start with coming into presidency in a pandemic and of course America have been one of the worst affected countries due to Covid but despite all that I personally feel at ease for America, excited, and elated to see where they will be in 4 years time. Of course Trump isn’t going to go out of office without a fight but January 2021 is going to be the start of a new age for America.
I don’t know about you guys but I do really struggle to understand America’s voting system. For example, when Obama was in office he made lots of great moves to bring the American’s together, they made history as the first black family to be in the White House, he made a lot of moves for many sectors: ended the war in Iraq, created the affordable health care act to insure 20 million American’s for healthcare, resqued the country from the great recession and took unemployment rate from 10% to just 4.7%, ordered the capture and killing of Osama Bin Laden, passed the American recovery and reinvestment act to help the economy after the recession, supported the LGBTQ+ community’s fight for marriage equality, put the country on track for energy independence, signed the deferred action for childhood arrivals which allowed 5 million people living in the US to have work permits and avoid deportation, signed the Dodd-Frank wall street reform and consumer protection act to re-regulate the financial sector, dropped the veteran homeless rate by 50%, and increased veteran funding, boosted fuel efficiency for cars, improved school nutrition for kids, signed the Lily-Ledbetter fair pay act to combat pay discrimination against women, nominated Sonia Sotomayor to the Supreme Court – the first Hispanic woman to serve as justice, won the Nobel Peace prize in 2009 for his conscious efforts to strengthen international co-operation between people, expanded stem cell research which lead to ground breaking discoveries in spinal injuries and cancer. So as you can see, Obama did so much in his 8 years in office and it was brilliant to see. Honestly a true asset to what America can be built to be.
And then Trump comes along and basically reverses all of that. I know we all make mistakes but Trump really was a disaster as a president. Don’t get me wrong he did a few major moves in the ways of the terrorist group ISIS, the first step act to do with the law and criminal justice system, a tax cut and jobs act that was claimed to help the economy but as far as I know didn’t do an awful lot in the long term, created a new space force, and reshaping the federal judiciary. But for the most part Trump has done some pretty questionable and awful things in his time as president: the failure to bring people together during times of sadness and tragedy, e.g. the loss of American’s due to COVID 19 and the tragic deaths of George Floyd and so many other black American’s due to racist acts, his impeachment, the global image of the country, separating migrant children from their families, doing next to nothing for the minority communities, causing chaos in the middle eastern countries due to the nuclear weapon deal withdrawal, taking away the affordable care act, the economy is in bits spurred off of the pandemic due to tens of millions of job losses – he’d done nothing to help relief people when it came to not working due to Covid, he caught the virus which goes to show his recklessness in this pandemic, messing with the postal voting system with the election.
I really struggle with American presidency’s because you have Obama for example who did so much good and put so much in place for the America people and was really well rounded in the work he did and then you have someone like Trump who comes and reverses half of that. I just feel like there should be more safeguarding when it comes to laws put in place in a previous presidency because Obama did so much work for half of it to be taken away just because he wasn’t in office anymore. I personally find that so wrong and disrespectful. But then of course there is the argument what laws should be safeguarded and what ones shouldn’t. As there’s a lot of laws that Trump has put in place that need to be changed because really he’s just caused a lot of problems for many working class American people. I have complete faith that Joe and Kamala will follow more along in the ways of what Obama did for the country whilst still putting their own stamp on things as they’re all from the same party. I just find it so hard that someone can come along from the opposite party in 4 years, 8 years etc and just wipe out everything you did for your country. Now of course that’s a reflection from the other party and not on you as a person or your party. But it’s just hard as I feel like we’re gonna be fighting the same battles all the time. For example, abortion was legal because it just should be, it’s a woman’s right to decide what they do with their bodies and the fact that some men think it isn’t is still something I find challenging to link together. But anyway in some states that’s illegal when it shouldn’t be and we’re still battling this in 2020 when there are bigger issues going on that really need to be spoken about compared to if a woman does or doesn’t want a baby. The fact that women’s rights are always under threat just really winds me up because we all exist here in this bubble therefore we should all automatically have the right to decide about anything that directly affects us. I’ve also seen this week they’re trying to ban abortion in Poland as well which is just utterly devastating. Like why are we constantly taking a million steps back to laws that shouldn’t be changing. Laws that affect people’s rights for the better shouldn’t legally allowed to ever be changed or compromised. I know there’s a lot of rioting happening in Poland because of this. Stripping away people’s rights to me will always be criminal and I hope we can keep fighting for justice even though we should be allowed to exist as we are.
But I do think the fact in 2020 we have a female vice president, finally, is very telling to how we’re viewing the world and a step in the right direction and I hope all American girls and women and girls and women all across the world of all genders, race, sexuality, ethnicities, think, ‘yes, I can do that.’ It will be because of people like Kamala that more women will step up because finally justice prevails and as women we are shown for once, that yes we can, hard work pays off, being honest pays off, doing good pays off, and being unapologetically you pays off. I’m excited to see where these 4 years take America and how that can be reflected on the rest of the world.
Well my loves, I think that is me done for this post, that is pretty much everything that has been on my mind lately. I hope you are all okay and are coping through the second lockdown. If you do feel like you need someone to chat or to listen, you guys know where I am. Always up for a chat! I will see you all in a future post, most likely a Christmas themed one as I’ve been doing some planning and I’ve got some creative and fun ideas this year. There’s also going to be a special something happening on Instagram which I am in the process of creating, so don’t forget to follow me over there @katiej0hnson for all the festive and fun content.
Happy October lovelies! The best months of the year are upon us, starting with the spookiest season of all, Halloween! When I was younger my parents never really celebrated Halloween, apart from one time I went trick or treating with some friends, but for the rest of my childhood until I was about 17-18, Halloween was never really something I took part in. So you can imagine now as a 23 year old woman I fully embrace the season and all things spooky and garish! Especially because the autumnal transition is my absolute favourite. The warm tones, the warm smells, the cosy nights in which are also warm come to think of it. Just a lot of warm elements that I love! So I figured for my first post back on here it would only be right to do a room transformation. If you follow me on Instagram and Twitter, @katiej0hnson and @katielouj0hnson, then you will have already seen the video and the overall finished look but I thought this post could be a slight talk through of the bits and pieces I’ve got to also give you guys an idea on how you can transform your room into your cosy autumnal and Halloween dream!
So first things first I changed everything in my room that represented more summer aspects. Such as my fake plants from Primark (can’t put my real ones away in a cupboard obvs) and my light and fresh fragranced candles and diffusers etc. Just anything that’s more aimed at summer time or just my every day room aesthetic as unfortunately I don’t have the space to have everything out all of the time! So we’ve put all those away until probably Feb next year as you all know what comes after autumn and how obsessed I am with the next season. But before we get ahead of ourselves, let’s get back to autumn.
Autumn for me is all about enjoying the changes in the season, watching the leaves turn from green to brown, feeling that cold chill in the morning and having bright sun by the afternoon, swapping my tshirts for jumpers and my sandals for boots. It’s a change I am fully committed to and happy to make. In these seasons of thankfulness and giving I fully come alive and I just love it.
I decorated my room for autumn/ Halloween literally on the 1st of October as I didn’t wanna waste any time and I just wanted to fully enjoy it. Honestly I genuinely love it, it’s so cosy every night in my room with all of my candles lit and the fairy lights on. I’m so content in there. Plus everything I’ve bought is not super expensive, it’s all affordable and it’s got quite a mix bag of styles in there that I personally love and I feel represent me. You guys know me, I don’t do anything by halves, I either go all out or don’t do it at all. Those good ol’ Taurus traits of mine, either way, enjoy and get inspired!
[Just a little note, all of these images have been edited to be slightly warmer than what they are in natural light. Edited using Instagram’s photo editor settings]
Here we go, stepping into the room transformation! As I said above everything in this room transformation it’s all affordable and from mostly high street shops. I feel like over the last few years the high street has started to view autumn and Halloween as more of a holiday we celebrate here in the UK. Don’t get me wrong, there are still many places that start going full on Christmas in bloody August and even though I adore Christmas, you all know I do, even that is too excessive for me. Even now it does seem like there is so much more Christmas things in shops compared to Halloween things but I don’t know if that is due to the pandemic. As personally when I came back after lockdown, I noticed in shops such as Lush, Card Factory, Poundland they had so much Valentine’s and Easter stock left and of course it took them quite a while to get rid of it because here in the UK we went into lockdown at the end of March, just after Mother’s Day and then two weeks before Easter. So I’m unsure if shops/ suppliers are worried about having so much stock sent in and then there is another lockdown which again would mean it wouldn’t get sold depending on how long that theoretical lockdown would last. So if that is a potential reason, I understand it but it is a shame.
So finding bits and bobs this year has been a bit of a challenge but what I have found I absolutely love! Starting with this wreath on my door! I’ve become a big fan of wreaths over the last couple of years, I think they’re a great festive accessory. Mostly popular at Christmas time but over the last couple of years I’ve seen a few autumnal ones around. You could easily make this I think if you’re really into your crafts or DIY.
Eucalyptus candle – DW Home at TK Maxx – £5.99, Trick or Treat candle – Wickford & Co at Home Bargains – 99p, Boo and Spooky slides – Home Bargains – £1.49, Pink pot – IKEA (years ago) – probably around £3, Pumpkin spice pot pourri – The Range – £4.99, the pinecones are from that pot pourri pack, Wooden tree trunk slate – The Range – £3.99, Christmas stamps – Home Bargains – 99p – £1.50, Throw – Primark – £4
Despite what I just said about Christmas we’ve got a few bits of Christmas peeking through! So this lovely display probably looks like it’s on some sort of table or smaller desk but it’s actually on top of a storage box. During this time of year I have so many birthdays as well as Christmas that I have to start buying presents early because, A) I have more than 20 people to buy for including birthdays, B) I can’t buy someone a gift that is for Christmas and their birthday combined. I just can’t, it ain’t what I’m about, and C) I don’t do things by halves. I am very excessive this time of the year but I just love it. Buying people presents is honestly my favourite thing to do. From going out and buying it, wrapping it and decorating it, and then delivering it. It’s just who I am. So whilst I’m living my bank account is crying, haha. So since the start of September I’ve been buying a few every week/ every other week etc so the spend is gradual rather than all in one month and then not having enough money to do anything because you know that’s not practical for adulting. I would say I’m approaching the half way point for present buying which is good, I’d say I’m on track and not spending too much all at once. Have you guys started yet? Let me know in the comments!
But because of all of the present buying, I had bits in so many bags and if you watch my IG story then you will know it was out of control. Was pretty messy and made the room look untidy etc, so my mum was actually the one who suggested putting them in a storage box so they’re out of the way. Cheers Maggie for this one as I’m a big fan of it. If you guys need some storage hacks get a big box and cover it over with something and put some decks on top, perfect. As you have the extra space you need and another decorative opportunity to share to your Instagram feed. But honestly I love it, everything on my “table” is such an autumnal vibe and it looks so lovely in the evening when the candles are lit.
Does anyone remember during the summer or maybe even before that when people were buying mirrors that almost looked like trays and were displaying things such as candles, diffusers, bowls, pot pourri, even fairy lights on them for an intricate piece on a table or in a room etc. Me being me was completely sucked in by the trend but I didn’t have a big enough area to have a really big mirror tray, so a little while ago I bought a small hexagonal one, also from Poundland, and that sits on my bedside bookshelf with a candle on the top which you will see later on in these photos. I’m a big fan of that one so when I saw the tree trunk ones going around I was like ooh, it’s an autumnal version, I need to find them. I think I may have first saw it on one of Zoe Sugg’s recent vlogs and since then I’ve seen them all over Insta.
So when I discovered these in The Range I was like oh my god, they’re going straight in my basket. Naturally I couldn’t decide on the size so I bought both the large and the small. As I wanted one to go on my make shift table as you can see in these images above, but at the time I could decide what would fill the space more and also what would fit my home accessories on better. I’m really glad I bought both of them but on my “table” this is the larger one which was £3.99! A bargain! I told you guys the wrong price on my IG story! Oops, but hey if it’s even cheaper it’s still a win win.
Textured gold pumpkin – TK Maxx – £2.99, Sticky Toffee candle – Home Bargains – 49p, Desk calendar – Wilko – 50p (sale), ‘Cosy’ sign – George @ ASDA – £3, Mini USB salt lamp – free gift from a purchase my mum made when we bought some bigger salt lamps. But TK Maxx sell some really lovely ones for less than £20, Quote sign – George @ ASDA – £8 for a pack of 3 I think (giving the other two as Christmas presents), Pink and silver glittery pumpkin – TK Maxx – £5.99 (last year), Pumpkin speckled lights – Poundland – £2, and Small tree trunk slate – The Range – £2.99
Here is my smaller slate, I only put this here for now at the time as I didn’t know what else to do with it but I actually really love it. I think it creates a lovely range of heights between the decor to give an appealing look between all of the elements. Would really recommend these, such an affordable price, amazing quality, you can literally put them in any room, display anything you like on them, would be fab Christmas gifts as well. I’m excited to play about with these during Christmas time as well. LOVE!
Autumn and Halloween is not complete without pumpkins, they are a staple. Whether you like real ones or fake ones, now a days you can buy literally any kind of pumpkin. Last year I got this BOOTIFUL (see what I did there) pink and silver glitter one and it just reminds me of something from a Disney. It’s very whimsical, but I especially love it because it goes with my room. If it wasn’t obvious by now the theme of my room is pink, white, and grey. I would’ve also said silver but I have a big mix of all the metals in here (silver, gold, and rose gold) that you get a bit of everything. But it all works in my opinion. I love them both and of course these were from TK Maxx (my fave place) – amazing quality with such affordable prices. My pumpkin speckled lights are by far one of my favourite elements in my room this festive season. I feel like they look pretty basic in the day time but at night time let me tell you they are beaut! The speckled glow looks gorgeous on the wall and through the pumpkin shell itself. Makes me feel super duper cosy and I love it! If you’re looking for lots of fun fairy lights defo check out Home Bargains and Poundland!
This is Salem, I have had him for 3 Halloween’s I think now, mum and dad bought him for me and the uni girls and now he comes out every year. I have no idea where I put him last year because this year I can’t seem to find a place to fit him. Then one day mum put him on my telly and now that’s where he lives.
I did the whole tinsel with lights thing last year and I was a big fan of it so of course I brought it back for this year. It’s quite bold and almost “tacky” but I love it, especially in the evening when there are different vibes of lights in collective areas in my room which you will see at the end of the post. It’s so cosy and I would recommend.
Chocolate orange candle – Dunelm – £1, Eco Wix candle in Lakeside S’mores – George @ ASDA – £5 sale, also has a wood crackling wick for all of the cosy by the fire vibes, Autumn Orchard – Tk Maxx – £5.99, I actually had this one last year but it was named Farm House Cider and that was by DW Home, so I don’t know if this is a rebranded version or DW Home own whatever this brand is but I’m happy I found it again as it was my favourite last year.
I am so in love with my salt lamp. I’ve had it for a few months now, not just for autumnal times but it is great for autumn because it has such a warm golden glow with a hint of pink depending on how deep the colour of the lamp is and it’s just such a cosy vibe. Plus they’re lovely for purifying the air and raising energies and overall it’s just really calming and nice. Would recommend getting one if you guys don’t have one as I think they can be a great benefit for mental health and mindfulness as well.
I feel like this looks very grand because of how the tinsel sits and the shape and flow of it. Again seen as quite bold and potentially “tacky” but I love it and it’s a good vibe. Would recommend whacking up some Halloween tinsel.
Here’s just a little close up so you can see it more clearly. I’m a big fan of wooden decks so I loovee this!
On my bedside bookshelf it’s very minimal but the rest of the room defo makes up for that, haha. But I don’t have enough room to work with over here but what is over here I really do love. The candle smells divine, honestly guys if you’re looking for some lovely autumnal scents check out The Range and Home Bargains, great quality and even better price.
Also I just had to include these earrings because they are autumn in an earring and I’m literally wearing these every single day at the moment. I was very lucky to win these in a giveaway from the shop, Lazy Ginger Designs on Etsy, click here to check out her shop and here to check out her IG. Funnily enough we used to go to college together all those years ago, it’s funny how things come back around isn’t it. But honestly they’re such good quality polymer clay earrings, really sturdy back, and they’re such gorgeous colours. I can’t wait to buy a few more bits from her shop as she has some other autumnal pieces right now and I think there may also be some Christmas ones coming. But honestly so worth the money, go and check them out. I am in no way shape or form being paid or getting any other reward to say any of this, the product was not for review purposes or anything like that. Just a great quality piece by a creator who deserves the recognition and it’s nice to support people. Very grateful to have won the giveaway and to get to wear this beautiful pair every day of autumn. Thank you so much Lauren!
Is anyone else’s bed their favourite place? Nothing beats crawling into bed for me after a long day. Cosying up with my mountain of cushions and whacking my eye mask on = bliss.
Skull lights – Home Bargains – £1.49, Canvas print – The Range – £7 something, Photo frames – Poundland – £1 each
I’m a big fan of this canvas, I think it’s so cool and different and it goes with my room aesthetic. However the standard fairy lights I had before now look too much in front/ on top of the canvas. So luckily these skull ones are just the right size to work along side the canvas rather than distract from it. So after the festive season is over I’m gonna have to find some around this size for this area.
Well my lovelies that is everything for the Halloween room transformation! So all that’s left to do now is see it in all it’s glory in the dark of night! So enjoy!
It’s even more a vibe at night. Don’t you guys agree? Honestly the cosy vibes are the best. I hope you all enjoyed and it’s inspired you to decorate your room all festive for a super duper affordable price.
Don’t forget to keep up with all my socials to see what I’m getting up to day to day on my Insta (@katiej0hnson) and my Twitter (@katielouj0hnson). I hope you’re having a spooktacular week and I will see you all on another autumn day.
Hello lovelies and welcome to a brand new post! This is a very special one because, as you can see in the title, I’m doing a collab! I’ve teamed up with divethru, the self care journaling app for the month of July to promote and take part in their 30 day challenge. This is a self care challenge aiming to check in with yourself daily with different prompts and focus points to overall help your mental well-being to feel a little bit calmer, more relaxed, less stressed, and hell of a lot more grateful in our every day lives!
I’ve been playing around with the app and what they have to offer currently beforehand to really see if it is something I want to promote to you guys and encourage you to use etc. In my eyes, there is no point in promoting a product you don’t like or wont/ aren’t really using. So I’ve been putting it to the test before the collaboration and the challenge and so far it has been thoroughly enjoyable and I have very much enjoyed divingthru my emotions and thoughts and not necessarily making sense of them with the app but just acknowledging that they’re there and writing about them and the feelings surrounding them to help my mind feel less cluttered and busy.
My current favourite thing about the app is that you can decide how long you want to do a session for. Either 6, 12, or 18 minutes for the quick dives which is great if you’ve got some time just before you go to bed or when you wake up in the morning, maybe before work etc. I’ve currently been doing those just before I got work when I’ve grabbed a coffee and I don’t get stressed too easily anyway, but I am finding doing them just before work puts me in such a chilled out head space to start my day. Also I am enjoying the mix between the guided voice overs from Sophie Gray (one of the founders of the app) and the free quiet space to actually journal and let your thoughts come through. It’s a nice balance as I feel like some guided talk through’s can bombard you with so much content that you have no free space to just exist for a minute or two. But this app has a great balance of preparing for the session, doing the session, the talk down after, and then the reflection. I’ve also been enjoying how the app records your days and stages on the app. It keeps your progress which is really nice if you didn’t want to use a notebook even though I do feel like having an extra writing source with journaling is key. But it is really lovely to have those reflective paragraphs to look back on your journey and seeing your different stages.
One thing to be reminded though it is not a replacement for therapy and it is not a meditation app. It is simply just for journaling which can help you to feel less stressed, more balanced, more mindful, calmer, and just generally more in-tune with your brain. I’m really looking forward to getting stuck into the challenge and exploring and experiencing the app more with you guys along for the ride too. You can download the app from the App Store or Google Play just type in ‘divethru’ and it should come up. The app is completely FREE for this month of the challenge too so you can completely test if out and see if it’s really for you and if you wanna continue making it a part of your daily routine even after the challenge is over.
You can sign up to the challenge via the app but if you’d like to do it from here as you’re reading this click here. Also if you’d just like to check out their page and see what their about then click here. By the time a few of you guys are reading this the challenge will already be commencing so if you’d like to get involved on social media then head on over to my Instagram which is @katiej0hnson and drop me a message if you want to be in the group chat that I am making for all of us to get talking about the challenge, be reminded of prompts, and to connect with one another for the rest of July! Plus there is going to be exclusive giveaways every day that you will not want to miss!
I hope you guys are as excited as I am to really get stuck in, I think it’s going to be a fun experience and another way for us to all connect. Of course I will be posting some updates around the experience of the app and an overall review in August. Comment down below and let me know if you’re gonna be joining in, I’d love to have you all along for the ride! Commencing 13th of July! Happy journaling my lovelies!
[NOTE: THE OFFICIAL MONTH OF THE CHALLENGE IS NOW OVER – REVIEW COMING SOON AND A SPECIAL CODE FOR YOU ALL TO CONTINUE YOUR DIVETHRU JOURNEYS]
Hello my lovelies, I hope you are all doing well. It has been a little while since we last spoke and needless to say a lot has been going on around the world even whilst we’re living through a pandemic. Which just goes to prove that time doesn’t stop rolling even when we feel like the world has stopped in our personal lives. Of course one of the biggest events being the murder of George Floyd which sparked the push for the movement and message Black Lives Matter. I have a post coming to you very soon regarding information and history of black lives, and the problem of white supremacy etc. It is coming but it is taking a lot of formatting and linking together and re-reading through etc. But it is definitely going to be worth the wait for the amount of content in it. So bare with me as my take on things and the change and push for black voices and lives via this platform of my life is coming and will continue into the future after this because this isn’t a trend, this is people’s lives were talking about.
But before all of that I thought I would bring you more of a filler post and discuss with you all today my thoughts and feelings of lock-down as I have recently gone back to work. I work in retail so my lock-down life came to an end on the 15th of June after three months at home. First things first, for me these three months went by so quickly. Yes it was hard not seeing family, friends, and Jake and his family but it only feels like five minutes ago I went into lock-down at the end of March and now all of a sudden I’m back at work and it feels like I was never not at work. Does anyone else ever have that feeling when you’ve been away from something you’re so used to for a long time, you return to whatever it was and it’s like you were never gone? As that’s how I feel returning to work. I have already been back at work for two weeks and even that time has gone insanely quickly.
The first thing is how grateful I am for my home. To have a roof over my head, a safe place, a place of comfort and relaxation, a place to eat and sleep etc. Having a home seems like such an every day element of people’s lives, especially when I’ve always had somewhere to call home, but lock-down made me realise that there are people out there who don’t have a place they call home. Which reminds me how lucky I am for a part of me to exist in this space, my home. Whenever I have a day off I usually never spend much time in the house just because it seems like if I don’t do certain things on my days off, such as going out to see friends or going out to sort bits out I don’t have enough time to do in the week then they will never get done or get left for too long etc. But actually these three months of spending all my time at home has given me a new appreciation for staying at home on at least one day off. I don’t need to go out every single day as there is so many things I can do at home instead of going out: cleaning my room, sorting my wardrobe out, relaxing in the garden, reading, baking, go for a walk, listen to podcasts, blogging, at home iced lattes, work on new crafts, spend time with my cats, re-organise things, video chat with friends, watch Netflix shows etc. I don’t have to go out and spend money all the time to feel like I’m making my day off worth it. I have such a good state of mind now for staying at home and enjoying my home more now than I did before. I’m definitely going to be making more of an effort to stay at home at least on one day off where I can and spend my day doing what I feel like.
It is so important to enjoy your own company and be your own best friend. I already do enjoy spending time by myself. I enjoy a balance of being out and socialising and having a day or two to myself to do whatever I feel I need to remain balanced overall. But spending so much time on our own in this situation I think can highlight how you really are and how you’re really feeling, where you’re really at in your life. As I know there are some people who struggle when they’re not around other people because of their own mental health. But it is so important to sit with yourself in your mind and body to know how you really are and how you’re really feeling. Of course we’ve all had moments and wobbles over these last few months which is only natural given the situation we’ve been put in. But only us as ourselves know our own mind and our own body so if something doesn’t feel right then don’t ignore that.
But also remember, never feel guilty. You’re allowed to feel however you feel, every response we have is triggered by something. An action, a conversation, a thought, a process etc. So whatever it is you’re going through right now, in this pandemic, life in general, it’s okay. It might feel a lot right now, and it might feel heavy, but you will get through this. Just keep taking it day by day and find comfort in the chaos of life right now.
But I have enjoyed this time with myself to reset myself almost. I’ve been working for so long now that I really lost myself and my whole time just became about working, seeing my boyfriend, and then seeing friends. Which is fine, there is nothing wrong with that but I noticed it was literally all I did. Even when I had a day off where I wasn’t meeting anyone, I’d always go out to town for the day and go shopping, treat myself you guys know. But like I said in the above paragraph I’ve found a new appreciation for staying home at least one day a week and doing bits at home and hobbies etc. So having 3 months off has given me a sense of redirection almost with a lot of things in my life including: job, careers, people, hobbies, thoughts, and ambitions for my future. For example, over lock-down helped me get into reading more and even now, the third week back into working I still read a little bit every single day and it’s another great way for me to get away from my phone and checking the time. I think rediscovering things you love and/ or discovering new things you love is a special moment of time you can share with yourself. I know that I’ve thoroughly enjoyed rediscovering me, it really feels like I’ve changed for my own mental health and well-being and I feel so much happier and settled and balanced with myself. I’d love to know in the comments if any of you feel the same.
Lock-down has pushed a lot of people to really think about their jobs and their careers, myself included in that category. As a young woman in her twenties I am here to tell you that after you leave uni or whatever education you’re in, figuring out your life is hard. It is so hard however I try to not stress about it because everything works out how it is meant to eventually. I don’t know about you guys but for the longest time I felt guilty if I was to stray away from my degree subject area. Despite the fact I wasn’t even doing anything to actually get onto the career ladder in my degree subject. So by having that mindset I put myself in a box for no good reason other than to put myself down and I was literally setting myself up for disappointment and failure. The only person judging me was myself at this point, so I am tired of not letting myself explore what I want to based on the “fear” of it’s not what I do or it’s not what I’m meant to do. When in reality we are all “meant to do” whatever we want to do.
I always said my current job is just a filler and I still believe it is but I am very settled in my current retail job and I know I don’t want to leave this job just to get another retail job. When I eventually move on I want it to be to a job that is a more “career” based job with my subject area or my different interests. I mentioned it to you guys in a previous post but I think the first one I am going to do is become a nail technician. I’ve always been good at painting nails and shaping natural nails, also I’ve been good at creating nail designs all my life and over lock-down I really rediscovered that hobby that could definitely develop further for me as a new path to go down. I am excited to find a course and hopefully get a license to do some freelance work as well as working in a salon within the next year or two. I’m speaking it into existence which means it will happen (manifest your desires lovelies!) even though corona is a bit up in the air with everything right now. But I am excited to see what the rest of 2020 does bring.
Friendship is always a constant in our lives despite the circumstances. There has been no doubt that this situation were in has been the hardest on relationships and friendships because were all more than likely not used to not seeing our nearest and dearest for a couple of months maximum. Luckily in these last couple of weeks I’ve been able to see Jake but I haven’t seen my uni girls since this time last year, we were meant to meet in March but of course that didn’t happen, I haven’t seen Heather and Chloe since February, and I haven’t really seen any of my family properly since the New Year probably. So of course this pandemic has affected relationships in the physical sense but what it has done has brought new ways to spend time together as friends such as online quizzes and movie nights, FaceTime coffee dates etc. It highlights that if you really care about someone/ people then you will make the effort to keep up that consistent relationship with them and what you put in you will get back if that energy is reciprocated. So not much actually really changed in terms of friendships other than the fact I haven’t been able to see my friends for months and I am so grateful we’ve been able to video call every week or every few weeks. Video calling will never replace spending actual time around their energy however at least it’s a close second to giving you the same endorphins you get from actually being around somebody. I’m just so excited to actually be reunited and to hug them and to just finally be within their space again. Heather, Chloe, and I are hoping we will be able to meet some time this month but ideally we need a day where the weather isn’t too awful if we’re going to have to mainly be outside in open spaces etc. But that day will be here soon, I can feel it and I’m honestly so grateful we’re all okay and safe and well. As for the uni girls I have no idea when we’ll be able to meet again as we’ve all got to travel quite far to see one another so I have no idea when that will be but hopefully sooner rather than later. The same goes for spending time with all of my other family as well as we’ve got a lot to celebrate as a family: mine and Jake’s engagement, my recent birthday, anniversaries, my cousin literally had a baby just yesterday! A lot has happened this year that is yet to be celebrated because of the pandemic. So time with family and friends is going to be very much appreciated when it eventually happens and I can’t wait for that.
Finally, you guys are going to be shocked by this as much as I am, you all know that I am the treat yourself queen. But I have managed to save so much money in lock-down! I am honestly shocked because I felt like I was constantly ordering things online and I still had birthday’s and other events to buy for, for other people. So I am shocked by this statement as much as you but some how it happened. On my payday the month before I got furlough paid I got £700 which was fine. I’d taken quite a bit of time off so I was shocked I’d even got that. So I paid my dad my rent and then I did some online shopping (obvs, who didn’t?) and then I paid for a few birthday presents for people and then some how at the end of the month I still had £400 left. So really I only spent £200 because £100 of that went to my dad. I am still sat here now not knowing how that is possible because I did so much online shopping and yet somehow only spent £200?! I’m convinced I passed through a parallel universe or something, I don’t know. So I moved the rest of that money to my savings when my furlough pay came in, which was the best pay day I have had for the longest time. It is bad though that my furlough pay is better than the pay I get from when I actually go to work. If that has been the same for you guys no wonder none of us really wanted to go back, haha!
These 3 months have proved to me that I just spend money for the sake of it and really I always knew that but I didn’t realise it to the extent that it is on. I get the train into my local town and I have time to myself before and after work which means I either go for a coffee and a snack or I go to a couple of shops and have a browse around. But it is madness how much money that takes from me every day when I’m in work. So lock-down has been fantastic for me to actually get saving money properly. As I used to save bits and then take some out when I needed it or I saved a couple of hundred for when Jake and I went on holiday for example and then that money was just gone. So in my job it is hard to save when sometimes the hours are great and other times they’re barely scraping the barrel. But I know I am lucky to have a job, especially right now so I’m not going to complain too much. But I have started finding joy in saving money and actually not touching it and not spending it. I’ve never been the best at saving money, I’ve always been a spender, hence the treat yourself life motto. But as of lately I think I’m finding a lovely balance of spending a bit and saving more than a bit. So that’s really good and it makes me happy to know that the money is there for something in my future or for a proper treat day. So yeah I’m really excited to keep saving. Does anyone else have a switch flip in their brain that goes from wanting to spend money all the time to I’d rather save money now.
Well my angels those are my thoughts and feelings three months on. As I’m typing this right now I’ve almost been back at work a month already, madness how fast that has gone. Feels like I’ve been there for only five minutes. Let me know in the comments if you’re back at work, still on furlough, or if you’re at school/ college/ university or if you’re finishing any of those etc. Just let me know I’d love to have a chat with you all down below! Let’s start a conversation in the comments, tell me one thing you’re grateful for because of lock-down.
I hope you’re all having a wonderful day, speak to you soon!