Monday, 30 December 2013

'How do you measure, measure a year?'




My, oh my, 2013 you've been a crazy one haven't you? The year has whizzed by so fast, I'm left reeling as if it's all been a wonderful (okay, mostly wonderful) dream. 
As the festive season draws to a close, I've found myself reflecting on the metaphorical rollercoaster ride 2013 has been. I feel that I've accomplished a lot this year; 2013 has seen me begin many new chapters of my life, as well as improving on others. 

So, what better way to document and share with you my personal highlights of the past twelve months than a big smushy let's-get-overly-emotional-and-talk-about-all-the-good-things-that-have-happened type post!   


University

2013 has seen me complete my First Year at university, and dive headfirst into the stress that is 'Year Two'. I was apprehensive when beginning university as I was still in my home town, living with my family. I didn't move into Halls of Residence, I didn't have flat mates. Therefore, I was forced to put myself out there even more in order to make friends. This scared me for a number of reasons. Was I still going to get a good experience without having as much independance as those students that do move away? What if I couldn't make friends in a lecture because I'd be too busy scribbling down notes? Of course, as always, I was worrying far too much. Luckily, I met lovely people on my course and soon found my feet. 
I know it's super cliched to say but, University has quite frankly changed my life. I've learnt a lot, I've partied a lot, I've laughed a hell of a lot, and I've had a smile on my face an immeasurable amount more than the year before. I'm now a much more confident person; I've had the chance to take many opportunities that never would have arisen had I not stayed in education. I've also met some of the best people and made some very strong friendships that I hope to hold onto for many years to come.
Although it's not always easy, and I'm often up to my eyeballs in essay stress, I know that every moment is helping me to get to where I want to end up. And the fact that I'm getting to have fun alongside that is pretty darn great. 

Musical Theatre Society

Gah, I barely have words to describe how much this society means to me. I remember forcing myself to pluck up the courage to go to the Fresher's Induction back in 2012. I was terrified. And my God am I glad I went. Through it, I've met most of the amazing friends I mentioned above. During 2013, I had the opportunity to perform in two shows during my first year at University; 'Down on the Avenue' - an original showcase in January and 'Grease' the musical in May. I wrote a post about Grease in more detail, which you can view HERE. All of the people I met were so lovely and made me feel so welcome. I love my MTS family! 
At the end of the semester, when Elections for the new Committee arrived, I decided to challenge myself massively and ran for the role of President. Again, I wrote another post about this which you can catch up on HERE. I won the vote, and as of this September I have assumed the role of President. It has been tough at times, but I love it. In January, we will be performing our showcase, 'The Phantom of the Musical', and I cannot wait for people to see the amazingly talented, hard working members we have.
The most rewarding part of the role is knowing that I'm helping to give the new members a place they love as much as I did last year. Seeing them form friendships with people they may not have otherwise met, and hearing how much they are enjoying the whole experience makes all the late nights, endless emails, phone calls, forms, organising and problem solving stress worthwhile. 
I'm aware I sound like some form of deranged proud Mother, but I have a lot of feelings, okay?

Travels

2013 saw two firsts for me in travel. Back in July, my mum, my sister and I went on holiday for a week to Tenerife. This was the first holiday we'd been on just the three of us, and it was nice to take a time out from all things Internet and work (yes, I did just say it was nice to be away from the Internet) and enjoy some quality time together. I documented my time away in a good ol' post which you can view here
I also went on my first 'holiday' of sorts without any parental guidance in August. I spent the most amazing few days in London with one of my closest friends. We went to the YouTube gathering 'Summer in the City' and I spent my birthday evening watching my favourite musical Les Miserables live on the West End for the first time. It's safe to say August was very kind to me this year. If you'd like to hear more about my London adventures, I wrote more about them herehere and here

Gigs

Although I haven't been to that many gigs in 2013, the ones I have attended have been pretty spectacular. Most prominently McFly's 10th Anniversary gig at the Royal Albert Hall. That night was just incredible. In 2014, I intend on going to more, including 3 McBusted dates which I already have the tickets for. What? My inner 12 year old just couldn't deal with only one, okay? 

Birth of this blog

2013 saw me take the plunge back into blogging, and it's a decision I'm pleased I made. Although I haven't had as much time as I'd have liked to commit to creating more posts, I'm pleased with where I've got to so far. I'm still finding my feet here, but I intend on improving and writing more in 2014. I have a few little ideas brewing away in my mind and I'm looking forward to sharing them with you here, so I hope you plan on sticking around to see them! 

Without wanting to sound too cliched, I've changed and grown a lot this year. I feel like I'm slowly starting to 'find myself' for want of a better phrase, and it feels good. Positivity is the way forward!

What better way to end this post than with a photo montage of my favourite memories?






(It's okay, I cringed too.)

2013, you've been a blast. 2014, you've got a lot to live up to but I look forward to seeing what you have to bring!

For those of you that haven't seen my previous post on New Year's Resolutions for next year, you can view it here.
Alrighty then! I think that just about rounds up my posts for this year. Thankyou for reading, and for following if you have. It means a lot.
See you in January!

A
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xxxx


Saturday, 28 December 2013

New Year's Resolutions

New Year's Resolutions: The promises we make to ourselves at the start of January that get forgotten about before the time February rolls around. Well, that's always been my experience of them anyway. However, 2013 has seen a change for me.
On the 6th January 2013, I saved this note onto my phone with the hope that I would complete it all by the end of the year: 




I fully expected to have forgotten about them, but for some reason they stuck. Every time I'd make a list in my phone (which is a LOT) I'd notice the note there and be reminded of the things I wanted to change. Don't get me wrong, there is a lot more about myself that I'd like to alter, but these seemed the most prominent at the time and so I put in a proper effort to complete them. 
This year, I tried to set myself goals that were achievable if I set my mind to it. But, I also wanted them to be things that wouldn't mean I had to change drastically straight away because that never works in my opinion. 
 So, how did I do? Well, minus the one about going to London so often, I completed them!
(In retrospect, I could've and should've taken a LOT more photos, but I still improved on the year before.)

In light of my successfulness (yup, claiming that's a word) I have decided to do the same for 2014 and see what happens in the upcoming year. My resolutions are to:

- Again, take more photos. I want to document this amazing time in my life that I'm experiencing much more. 
- To cut down the amount I procrastinate. This one is going to be tough, but I know I'll gain a lot if I do manage to combat it. When a job needs doing, I need to start doing it there and then, rather than putting it off.
- To stick at blogging, with the hope of growing and improving my little space here.
- To continue saying yes to opportunities. Even the ones that scare me.
- To have started a plan for after Third Year. This one is SCARY.

Like every year, I have had some tough times during 2013. However, on the whole it's been pretty darn good. I can only hope that 2014 brings me more of the same.

Happy New Year!!

A
xxxx

Wednesday, 11 December 2013

Untitled

Like being on a boat,
Drifting, often aimlessly
Sometimes purposefully
Reaching, surging, navigating
Surviving 

With waves that crash
Unexpectedly overboard, 
With a mass of power
Sometimes manageable, other times with a force
So great
The boat soars up,
Into the air
Like a bird leaving the nest.

And in that moment
Free-falling
Everything is silent,
Calm

And in that moment 
The chaos of the ocean, the upheaval
The torment, 
The mindless meandering,
Can be forgotten,
Left behind.

And it is only in that moment,
That the beauty of the ocean can truly be understood.



(I wrote this a while ago but haven't posted it as I'm not too sure whether I'm happy with it. It's been years since I've written poetry, but I thought I'd give it another go. I'm aware it's different to my normal posts but I'm still finding my feet here in this little corner of the Internet I can call mine.

Thanks for reading as always)
A
xxxx