Tuesday, 28 August 2012

Sunday, 26 August 2012

A big Switzerland bonjour.

Firstly, thank you everyone, so much, for your comments in my last post. It was really difficult and will continue to be, but there's no point in dwelling on what we can't control. We must only make the best of it.

Have you missed me?



I'm still in Switzerland but I've finally psyched up enough energy to log onto my blogger app and write this here post. Turns out it feels like quite a lot of effort when you're in the mountains and eating your body weight in cheese.

This past week we have been having a whale of a time with the glorious Howard family. They are the dogs bollocks. We have been swimming in lakes, climbing through trees, rising down mountains on scooters, playing plenty of card games and drinking plenty of wine. The Howards left the chalet today, much to my dismay, and we Maxwells remain for another four days.

I miss you lot, and I miss free internet, but Switzerland is fun. Collaboratively, Eve, Max and I have come up with a new video blog feature. More on that in the coming weeks - it'll be a corker.

I hope I find you well and happy. I'm looking forward to coming home but also (possibly due to aforementioned personal life tribulations) am not. I don't know how soon I want to make big decisions and start doing real life again.

Until next time.

Friday, 17 August 2012

Thank you.

Thank you to everyone who sent me tweets, texts, emails and comments yesterday, for all your crossed fingers and your prayers and just for simply caring. It means absolutely masses to me. Late last night, after a nice meal out with my family (pizza and chocolate pudding were inhaled), I got a phone call saying that I wasn't going to be offered a place at Brighton this year. Of course I was and am extremely upset, but I had somewhat resigned and prepared myself for the fact.

I will now need to decide what to do with this year. I certainly don't want it to be a waste and instead would like to make it a year that I look back on and say... "yeah, that wasn't so bad actually, I did alright for myself". I want to make good decisions, learn a lot, make some money, move physically and emotionally, and bring myself a little bit closer to my dream of Journalism.

For now though, I'm going to go on holiday. We're driving over night to Switzerland (and leaving in an hour and a half) to spend time with friends, eat cheese, drink wine, and swim in lakes. It's probably what I need.

Unfortunately the internet situation isn't looking too shiny. We were supposed to have WiFi installed but nay, the Swiss decided not to turn up. I'll blog as regularly as possible but please excuse the slight break as I'm probably bathing in wine.

ps. WELL DONE to everyone who did get into the University they wanted. I'm definitely, absolutely not bitter at all.

Thursday, 16 August 2012

Playing the waiting game.

In a nutshell, I didn't do very well in my exams and have not got the grade I needed and was stipulated by my chosen university. Although I expected this to happen, and was mentally prepared for it, and whilst it's rare for me to feel this way, I'm sad about how my life has gone in the last four years. If I hadn't gotten ill and studied at school, I probably wouldn't be in this situation. What ifs can mess with your mind. I genuinely feel that there have been positives weaseled out of this unfortunate situation, and the majority of the time I am happy to laugh at it and appreciate everything I have learned and gained, but right now, as I'm sitting on bedroom floor wondering what is going to happen if I have to retake my A Levels for the third time and the fifth year, I feel upset and a little scared. Injustice is a terrible reality of life, and whilst it is something almost everyone must deal with at some point and try not to dwell on, I believe we should be allowed a moment to sit on the floor and cry. Although I trust God and I know he has a plan for me, sometimes I do get a little indignant with him - I think he understands. I'm intelligent and more than capable of doing a degree, it's just a shame that I have no way of proving the fact, instead I have to rely solely on my persuasive skills and the kindness of others. Succeeding today means more than getting into university for me, something I only truly realised this morning, it means sticking my middle finger up to a demon that has toyed with my life for years, and coming out the other end as a better, more well rounded person... and one with a degree.

Luckily for me, I have found the kindness of others to be scattered all over Brighton University, and have been helped and encouraged over the past few months in getting my offer and me ready for what comes next. I've been told that one of the course leaders of the English BA I have applied to will give me a call at some point today; I hope to discuss whether a place might be available for me anyway. It's a case of playing the waiting game now, and even when the call does come there are far from any guarantees.

Today is a a bit of a rough day, but whatever the outcome I'm sure everything will work itself out. It just does, doesn't it? Opportunities can arise from anywhere. Keep your fingers crossed for me though if you would.

To everyone else getting results today, I really hope you got what you wanted.

Wednesday, 15 August 2012

The day I got a tan.

I feel I should explain myself slightly. You know me, I'm the first to disparage of fake eyelashes and nails and the majority of the cast of TOWIE make me simultaneously love and hate to be alive. So why, today, did I feel the sudden urge to book at spray tan, and then even worse, go through with it?

Well, my friends, we must try all things at some point (except drugs, murder and dodgy kebab shops). I'm also going on holiday on Friday and don't want to damage people's eyes with my bright-as-the-sun pale skin. All Edward Cullen esque. Oh and being tanned makes you look skinnier (don't hurt me).

Right now I'm sitting in the office, smelling less than perfect and, even though it's raining outside, I have my legs out. Judge me all you like, I'm quite enjoying the novelty.

Monday, 13 August 2012

A woeful one.

What happens when you spend (almost) the entire weekend soaking up every last minute of Olympic brilliance? You don't do anything worth taking photographs of and write a terrible blog post documenting pretty much nothing. Ho hum.

We did, though, have a roof-top BBQ on Friday evening before retreating indoors for some Tom Daley action. Brighton, roof, sunset, Tom Daley's abs, burgers, and wine make for a good one.

Sunday was sad. We bid farewell to the best two weeks ever, in the form of a slightly on-acid Closing Ceremony. Thank you Seb Coe, for the most wonderful, heart warming and celebratory of Olympics. It really was marvellous.

It's raining today, which I believe to be Britain's metaphorical tears. At least The Great British Bake Off starts tomorrow.

Friday, 10 August 2012

Leibster blog award.


Thank you to those who nominated me for the Leibster blog award. I feel bad, for real, but I totally forgot to make a note of who did nominate me, so I can't link you... sorry. Ah. Awkward. 

Anyway, The Daily Snapshot is the blog who reminded me of it (forgetfulness is a trend here) (thank you Charlotte), and so I figured I'd join in. I've never joined in with these question-and-answer blog award thingies before, not because I'm ungrateful, just because I'm lazy. But here goes, these are the questions Charlotte asks of me.

1.  Bath wash or bar soap?

Are these Americanisms? Translated as shower gel or bar soap? Antibacterial anything for me. Mrs OCD innit.

2.  What did you have for dinner last night?

Vegetable chili. With masses of BEANS. 

3.  Do you normally remember your dreams?  If so, what do you typically dream about?  If not, do you wish you did?

Yes, particularly when I'm feeling anxious. Last night I dreamt that I got into university; waking up was hard. Last week on two separate occasions I dreamt that I went to a banquet with Kate and William and that Ellie Goulding gave me some singing coaching.

4.  What is your most recent obsession - TV show, song, book, food, whatever?


And doughnuts.

5.  What was one of the quirkiest things you did as a kid?

Quirky, hmmm. My friend Rosie and I were weird, proper weird, you had to be there...

6.  What is one of your bad habits?  Are you trying to break it?

WHERE DO I START? OCD is one big bad habit. I'm trying to break it and it's all but killing me. (I'll win though).

7.  What is one of your favorite smells?

Fresh laundry. Oh my goodness.

8.  If you could adopt any (child) fictional character, who would you adopt?

Matilda. We could read and drink hot chocolate together.

9.  Tell me one thing you absolutely love about the city you live in.

I don't really live in a city. I live on the outskirts of London though, so I'm going with that. London is the greatest city in the world, it's got everything. I love that we know not to talk to one another on the tube (because who wants a conversation on the morning commute?), but when push comes to shove, Londoners have compassion like none other.

We've got great food too.

10.  What is one thing you wish you were better at?

The pole vault.

11.  If you were a breakfast cereal, which one would you be?

Cocopops because they're da best.

I'm SORRY but I really do not have the energy or brain power to be creating my own questions. Use Charlotte's wonderful questions! K? These are a few of my favourite under-200-followers blogs, whom I tag...

Amber, Frances, India, KateJess, and Emma.

But everyone have a bash at them, and link below!

Thursday, 9 August 2012

Summer so far.

I never wrote my summer bucket list, but nevertheless, it has been pleasant one so far. Sunshine, incessant rain, Brighton, London, lots and lots of Olympics and reluctant work have been combined to make up my summer. I've baked, I've failed to finish 50 Shades of Grey (due to it's terribleness), and I've soaked up the London spirit. I feel in limbo at the moment, awaiting results and news of my fate come September, and that feels neither good nor bad. This time next week I'll find out whether I'm to be going to Brighton University as I so desperately want, or not, and then I'll round off the summer with a two week break in Switzerland. From there, I have no idea. I hope you're all having grand old summer times. Read books, drink wine, and enjoy this bit of down time.

Monday, 6 August 2012

Go Britain.

I went to watch Olympics in real life on Saturday. Volleyball. I waved my flag like a loon. After four hours of that, and a lot of Americans, we came home and watched that night of Athletics - the one where Jess Ennis, Greg Rutherford and Mo Farrah made us all weep with joy and pride. What a marvellous night.

On Sunday we spent time with all the family (note the little people above - my favourites). And in between playing superheroes with Archie, I saw Andy Murray win Gold, and was so unbelievably pleased and overjoyed for him. I probably don't need to say it again, but I really love him. That medal ceremony was my favourite moment yet.

Since then, we have watched evermore Olympics, Gareth and I took a trip to Westfield, and I ate a pizza. Obviously. It was the weekend. Gosh.

Are you high on Olympics?

Friday, 3 August 2012

The very best brownies.

These brownies will change your life. They will induce chocolate comas and bring marriages back together (cannot guarantee), they will cost a lot of money due to an excessive number of chocolate bars but they will be worth it. No question. Bake them, bring them to a friend in need, eat them at midnight in front of Teen Mom 2, share them with your family and watch their faces lighten and their waist bands tighten, just do it. Preferably soon.

What makes these brownies such special brownies (besides the weed), is the amount of chocolate involved. There's 400g of dark chocolate, extra cocoa, and big chunks of white chocolate. They are gooey and chewy and deliciously moreish. The cooling time of 2 hours will be absolute torture. A hot one can't hurt.

Recipe adapted from Good Housekeeping.

200g butter
400g plain chocolate
225g light muscovado sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
200g chunks white chocolate
25g cocoa powder
75g self-raising flour
3 large eggs

- preheat the oven to 170°C and line an 8 inch square shallow cake tin with baking parchment. 
- melt the butter and chocolate in a bowl over a pan of simmering water.
- remove from heat and stir in the sugar, vanilla extract, cocoa, flour, eggs and white chocolate.
- pour the mixture into the prepared tin and level the surface with a spoon.
- bake for 1 hour 15 minutes or until set on the surface but still soft underneath.
- leave to cool in the tin for 2 hours and then cut into squares.
- dust with icing sugar and serve.

Thursday, 2 August 2012

5 things.

1. I'm getting itchy feet and wanting my very own place to call home. Bookcases are taking up a lot of brain space right now. This house is the ultimate. (More images through link).

2. This tee is stunners. The end.

3. MORE FURNITURE ALERT. I'm very sad that this is sold. It makes my mouth water a bit.

4. I am an Olympic freaking MANIAC. The front page of The Telegraph today makes me happy in my heart. TEAM GB etc.

5. I dreamt about her last night and ordered a super special edition of her upcoming album minutes after it was announced. It can only be Ellie Goulding. Watch how beautiful and wonderful she is. (The bit where she mouths over Tinie Tempah's vocals makes me DIE) (3.27).

Wednesday, 1 August 2012

Exercise is the literal worst.

I'm trying to do the Jillian Michaels 30 day shred five times a week, and let's begin by saying it's been an extortionate struggle. Today, for the first time (possibly spurred on by the Olympic beach vollyball players' perky behinds), I took my best shot at level 2. After the 20 minutes of lunges and crunches and general groaning and sweating, I found myself on the floor, not quite sure whether or not to be conscious. Jillian shouts halfway through the workout "I want you to feel like you're going to die", I shout back: "you're an arsehole". She does the trick though. Her enthusiasm and talk of 'jean-shopping' makes you want to feel like you're going to die too. Kind of, obviously I would still rather do ANYTHING ON THIS GOD FORSAKEN EARTH than exercise. One of the biggest problems I have with exercising, besides the shaking hatred I feel towards it, is that all I want to do subsequently is eat a massive burger. Or three.

Exercise is the worst.