Goodbye 2017

And so we’re here again. I can’t quite believe I’m sitting here, preparing to take you through my year, once again.

It’s been a very hard year but also amazing in many ways. I feel like I’ve changed and grown as a person, and also seen those around me change in many ways.

Sadly, I’ve not seen as much of some of the people I love this year, but I’m hoping next year that will change. But I know these people still value me in the same way, as I value them still, despite not seeing them so much. You guys know who you are!

I know a high proportion of my readers head over here purely for the beauty stuff, and I’m going to post up a separate piece about my beauty picks for 2017, so if that’s what you’re after you have my permission to skip this one altogether. Though, if you do decide to carry on you might find there’s more to Musings than just beauty reviews, and I’d like to welcome you into the world of Musings lifestyle articles.

At the end of 2016 I set myself two resolutions (well, more like goals to be fair). By the end of 2017 I wanted to have attended at least one blogger event, and I also wanted to have become less judgemental.

Two very different goals. I achieved the first only this month. I had actually forgotten about my resolution and when I remembered it a couple of weeks ago, I was very pleased to have achieved it.

I also feel I am well on my way with the second goal. A very personal journey, and one that I won’t go deep into here, but I honestly feel like I am much less judgemental now than I was. I just have to work on being more tolerant of those who have not gone on this journey. I can only take control of myself and my own responses, but it’s hard and frustrating when other people appear bitter and judgemental  – I can see now it only hurts themselves.

Anyway, I didn’t mean to get all deep in this post! I’m going to give a month by month run down of what I got up to this year, which is much less intense! Each month title is a clicky link, so if there’s a post you’re interested in reading, click there and you’ll be taken to that month. So here goes :

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January

  • This year started with the celebration of 50 years of Milton Keynes! My home town since I was born (I may have strayed for a couple of years in the middle somewhere!)
  • Gary and I went for a little bit of culture at the end of this month and saw a play! Gaslight at the Aylesbury Waterside Theatre. One of my favourite films, it was great to see it on stage. Gary, who didn’t know the story at all, was very pleasantly surprised. It’s nice to do something a little different sometimes!

February

  • I started posting a little more on my YouTube channel, and a few people seemed to be watching!
  • I got taken in by ColourPop’s weekly product releases, and spent probably too much money on lipsticks (that I still love btw)
  • I told you all why I reverse wash my hair, and actually it’s something I still do and feel the benefit of.
  • I wrote my first proper post about mental health and touched on my experiences with struggles I face.
  • I saw La La Land for the first time and wanted to hate it, but fell deeply in love.

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March

  • I told the world why I’d stopped wearing bras, for some reason….
  • I did something that years back I would never have been able to do – I went on a shopping trip to London on my own.
  • I finally met up with Sophie Kate, when she took me as her plus one to the Glamour Beauty Festival.
  • I discovered the music of Childish Gambino and proceeded to not want to listen to anything else ever.
  • I went to Rome!

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April

  • In April I attended Secret Cinema’s presentation of Moulin Rouge – which incidentally I have never written up. I always wait until they put up their event video, so as to not spoil anything, however their video only went up the other day (so many many months later) and now I feel the moment has passed. If you wish to see this post, let me know in the comments, or else I will simply allow the memory to fade in my brain. Anyhow, it was a great night!

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  • Buffy The Vampire Slayer celebrated 20 years since its first airing, and I felt old…
  • I decided YouTube might not be for me, but also decided that the occasional dabble when it felt right was how I would move forward.
  • I went to see Bruno Mars and he was epic!

May

  • Ooh this month I shared my tomato linguine recipe – and boy is it yummy!
  • I watched a LOT of TV
  • I shared a much requested post, about why I decided to get married at a young age.

June

  • I wrote a post about anxiety and my experiences. It was probably the most personal post I’ve written on the subject to date.
  • Our trip to London to see Ariana Grande was amended slightly due to terrorist activity in Manchester, however we decided to press on and continue with the rest of our plans.
  • Musings celebrated its 8th birthday!

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July

  • I was given the chance to see London from one of their amazing Ducks!
  • I spoke about growing up and old and the secret adults never tell you as a child.

August

  • I posted my most viewed YouTube video to date (2.2k views so far!)
  • I spoke about my quest for positivity.
  • I turned 34 years old!
  • I started planning my trip to Orlando

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September

  • I did a little photo shoot with my Niece in the last of the summer sunshine.
  • I moved house! This took up most of my free time!!

October

  • Halloween month. I was all about sharing my favourite Halloween movies, and getting ready to go on holiday to Florida!
  • My Florida holiday was epic
  • I spoke about striving to be more tolerant.

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November

  • And as soon as you can say ‘Halloween is over’ it was Christmas season!
  • I shared a post about my holiday and all of a sudden the weather was crisp and frosty and we were all thinking about the festive season!

December

  • And here we are!
  • December was about sharing meals with family and friends and unexpected snow!
  • I went to my first blogging event, the Blogosphere Christmas Festival.
  • And now here we are – you’re reading the final piece!

So what’s in store for next year then?

Well, I always say this, but I’d like to learn a new skill. I’d like to feel a little less restless in my skin. I’d like to continue on my quest for positivity, in becoming more tolerant and less judgemental.

I’d like to continue to better myself.

So here’s to another year! If you blog and you’ve written an end of year round-up post, I’d love to read it. Pop your link in the comments and I’ll have a read 🙂

 

 

Goodbye 2014 – Hello 2015!

Well, last year was an amazing year, jam-packed full with some exciting stuff. I honestly can’t believe it’s over and a new year has begun already. At the end of September it seems I blinked and here I am in January! Is this a sign of getting old, or just being really busy? I’m hoping it’s the latter.

Anyway, I began 2014 with anticipation of my first half marathon to run, and knowing I would apply for the London Marathon (spoiler alert, I didn’t get in!) but I had no idea I’d be ending it with one of my friends having had a baby and another getting engaged. Who knows how 2015 will end? It’s been a fab year, and here’s a run down of what I have been up to:

January:

  • I began the year with my new 5 year Q&A diary. I started with good intentions but as with all these kinds of things I didn’t have the follow through and ended up forgetting to fill it in by about month 3. Bad Erin.
  • Training began for the MK Half Marathon.
  • I started the 30 day plank challenge, and gave up at that about midway through after realising my core wasn’t strong enough to start with and I was causing more damage than good. Maybe I’ll give it another go in 2015 now my core is a bit stronger.

February:

  • I saw Taylor Swift in her Red tour with Gary and my Niece.
  • We watched Dog Day Afternoon at the Southbank BFI as part of their Al Pacino Season.
  • We saw Pixar in Concert with music played by the London Symphony Orchestra at the Royal Albert Hall.

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  • I was in full swing with healthy food and meal preparation to accompany our training.
  • I was mostly listening to Afterglow by Wilkinson as my song of the moment.
  • I was a featured photographer on Red Bubble’s Front Page.

March:

  • My friend Jen and I tried our hands at Yoga.
  • I ran my first sub 30 minute 5k
  • Gary and I completed the MK 10k on the hottest day of the year so far.

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April:

  • I started the 100 Happy Days instagram project. (Look right for my instagram widget and to follow me there!)
  • We cheered on the runners at the London Marathon.
  • My music of choice this month was Mr Little Jeans – check her out!
  • Easter was spent with friends with a Good Friday meal out and then a roast dinner with the Book Club girls. We found out one of the girls was pregnant and due in November – the first book club baby!

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  • Gary, Tash and I ran the fairly disappointing Electric Run but it was fun to dress up!

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May:

  • This month saw Gary and I complete our first half marathon. It was a tough slog, but we did it!

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  • I spent a few weekends catching up with old friends and really enjoying the beautiful weather.
  • Gary and I went to Brighton with his family and I got my wish to see the sea!

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  • I was mostly listening to Hozier this month.

June:

  • In early June Gary and I went back to the O2 and saw Katy Perry in her Prismatic tour.

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  • I was very proud of my girls when we completed the Race for Life together with great finishing times.

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  • I became a World Cup widow and as a result worked my way through the complete series of Veronica Mars. It was rather fun actually!

July:

  • And so began my busiest month of the year as Musings of a So-Called Shutterbug turned 5 years old!
  • I spent time with friends at the local Waterside Festival and in the same weekend accidentally went to see Haim and Kings of Leon at the Mk Bowl.

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  • I went riding rollercoasters with my Sister-In-Law at Thorpe Park.
  • Gary and I visited Southend on Sea and saw the sea again.
  • We began regular cardio training after a break from the gym since the half marathon.
  • My BFF Jen’s hard work paid off as she looked amazing on stage at her bikini competition.

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  • We played tourist in London and visited Westminster Abbey.
  • Tash and I ran the Women’s Running 10k, this year in Milton Keynes, in the pouring rain.

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  • One of my top 3 events of the year happened this month: Hot Dub Time Machine on the Southbank. It really was the best party ever.
  • I coined the term Flogging.
  • Book Club Girl, Sarah announced her engagement!

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August:

  • We celebrated Sarah’s 30th Birthday in style with a wonderful picnic and BBQ party.
  • Gary and I went back in time with Secret Cinema
  • We tried our hands at Body Attack.
  • Robin Williams lost his battle with depression. Dialogue and discussion was opened up around the world and people were openly discussing mental disorders for the first time.
  • Gary and I saw Brief Encounter at the Royal Festival Hall with musical score performed live by the Royal Philharmonic Concert Orchestra.
  • V Festival rocked our socks

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  • The internet was overtaken by the Ice Bucket Challenge
  • Two wonderful men were able to legally marry and I was able to share some of their day with them.

September:

  • This month I was mostly listening to Ben Howard and Ed Sheeran.
  • Gary surprised me and to celebrate our wedding anniversary we went to Disneyland Paris, the happiest place on earth!

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  • I joined Rock Choir with my Mum.

October:

  • Taylor Swift released 1989 so I pretty much rocked out to that for the whole month.
  • We threw a cute little baby shower for Book Clubber, Caz

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  • My first concert with Rock Choir was this month, supporting Kerry Ellis on her UK tour and singing on stage for the first time in 13 years. What a way to make my return!
  • Jen and I went to the Royal Festival Hall to see Lena Dunham speak for her world book tour.

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November:

  • Baby Leo was born and what a cutie he is!
The cutest Santa Baby you ever saw! Little Leo!
The cutest Santa Baby you ever saw! Little Leo!

 

  • Rock Choir had a lot of events in store for us including Hatfield Frost Fair and finally recording at Abbey Road!

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December:

  • Christmas came and went!
  • The Book Club met together for a New Year’s Eve Eve meal and resolutions/predictions were set for the following year. We said goodbye to Sarah for three months and as I type she’s winging her way to Orlando. Not jealous at all…. 😀

So you can see it was a pretty full 2014. I already have two runs booked for 2015 (Bupa 10,000 and Women’s Running 10k), a gig at the end of January (Hozier) and plans for V Festival. Sarah’s Hen party to Ibiza at the start of September and a potential spa evening with the Book Club girls in March. Fitness intentions are to be bikini confident by September and health intentions are to get hold of and beat the anxiety that controls me daily. I intend on winning this battle most of all, and I’ll start with my fear of driving which I have almost beaten but not quite.

I really can’t wait to see what 2015 holds and take you along for the ride!

2015… what’ya got for me?

Hotter than Hell

Bravo England, you successfully had the coldest spring in history and now it’s Summer and hotter than hell! I’m really enjoying it so far – but saying that I’ve been at work for the last 2 weeks (including weekends) so haven’t really had much to do with it.

I have been thankful that my shop is air-conditioned! Today I’m having a much deserved day off and have already cleaned the house, mown the lawn and then been out for breakfast. Good day so far!

I’m in my last week at my current job and so begins a week of ‘lasts’. I have two shifts left after today and then I have a week off to enjoy the weather and relax before I start my new one – and I have a fully booked week! Ironically it was 3 years ago this Friday that I left this company the first time around!

It’s been a stressful two weeks at work but, on her return from her honeymoon, my manager seems to think I did a good job. It certainly kept my mind off things. My Dad went into hospital at the end of last week and it appears his Chemo has been attacking his body and he has liver failure. As of yesterday he is improving. We’re taking each day as it comes, but the heat wave isn’t making his hospital stay any better. We’re hoping he’ll be allowed out soon.

Sunday is my second 5k race. The weather for the last two weekends has been nearing 30c, but this Sunday they’re forecasting 24c. Let’s hope it doesn’t creep up! I haven’t been able to train for about a week since the weather has been too hot, and before that I crippled my toe. My toe is very much better (just a little bruised) and I’m forcing myself out for a run this evening. I will be a big sweaty mess by the end but if I can train in this heat it’ll make racing in it easier.

So that’s it for now. I’m going to go back to being lazy now 🙂

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