23 January 2015

The Lake District

The Lake District has soon become mine and Lee's favourite place to escape to for a relaxing weekend and that's exactly what we decided to do last weekend as a way to celebrate being together for four years. It's not something we usually celebrate but we had been desperate to return to the Lake District for some time away from our everyday lives and thought that this was the perfect opportunity for our third visit, it was lovely to see the scenery in winter this time.
So, after a rather scary drive in the dark, on the hills, in the snow we arrived in Windermere at the most stunning guesthouse, The Cranleigh Boutique, it was somewhere we had had our eye on for ages and when they were offering a winter discount we couldn't say no. Everything about the room was perfect; a huge comfy bed, heated bathroom flooring, gorgeous modern decor, mood lighting and complimentary water, chocolates, pillow spray, lip balm and prosecco. We arrived quite late and we were in need of food so we headed out for pizza before returning to some TV in bed.
We treat ourselves to a lazy morning on the day of our anniversary before getting ready and heading out for breakfast at a nice little cafe. We then stopped by the lake to have a walk and some time in the amusements. There was a pool and spa located in a hotel just around the corner from The Cranleigh which we were able to use for free so later on, that's where we spent the most relaxing few hours in the pool, sauna, ice room and aroma room, we then headed back to get ready for some more good food, returning later to the room, snacks in hand, for another chilled night. 
On our final day we woke up to the prettiest covering of snow, however, this did mean our time was cut short as we were both worrying about the roads so decided to leave pretty early. We had a drive into Keswick, admiring the most beautiful views of the snowy hills on the way, and indulged in some fish and chips before heading home. Overall, we had the best time relaxing together.

Rachael x

5 January 2015

2015 - Looking Forward

Following on from my 2014 reflection, here I am thinking about the year ahead. I feel at a bit of a loss with the whole resolutions thing this year considering I achieved some major goals last year, I suppose the next big thing is moving out, which is something me and Lee have talked about a lot and although we'd both love too, it's expensive and who knows if this year will be the year. We are of course only 19 and in no rush, but after being together for almost four years it would be great to have our own space. Anyway, I have no idea what 2015 has in store but I'm looking forward to it. I already have a weekend in the Lake District and The Script live in the pipeline and I've started the year with a brand new blog design and I absolutely love it, it's a pre-made template from pipdig with some minor changes, the service I received from Phil was fabulous, do you like it?

I think this is the year of focussing on the smaller things and some of my goals include;
 Get my teeth whitened - Something I've wanted to do for ages, since getting my braces off I've been so unhappy with how yellow my teeth are considering I look after them and yes it's very expensive as I'm going to be using my usual dentist (I don't trust the bleach used in salons) but I just keep telling myself it will be worth it.
 Learn to cook - This has been on my resolutions list since January 2013. This year shall be the year. I actually have a Mary Berry cookbook my friends bought me for my 18th (because they know I'm terrible in the kitchen) so it's time to make use of it, we'll say 6 recipes from there and I'll be happy.
 Make a scrapbook - Definitely inspired by Lilly Pebbles' recent video on her project life scrapbook, I've wanted to do something like this for a while and I love how clean and organised project life looks, although I have heard that Hobbycraft are quick selling out of supplies since Lilly's video!
 Buy a new car - Basically, my little Corsa is on it's last legs, it's going to fail it's MOT this month which means no insurance when it's due next month and it's not worth spending money on it as it is a very old, well loved car. I'm just so indecisive when it comes to these things, I've been car searching for months now!
 Finish all university assignments before 11pm the day before they're due - I was pretty bad at leaving them last minute last year but this year I've somehow gotten so much worse, barely starting them until the day before, resulting in some awful mornings after just a few hours sleep.
 Plan things! - all sorts of things, adventures and trips, my future etc (scary thought but more recently I've been thinking about where on earth my degree is going to take me).
♦  Get healthy and toned, try classes - the same old resolution that has appeared on every list. I did get in to a good routine for the first half of last year though so I'm determined to get that back. I may even sign up to a local gym for the summer instead of travelling to the uni one I'm currently at. I also really want to try some exercise classes this year, I'm just so scared of going alone! What classes would you recommend for beginners?
♦ No phones in the morning when Lee's here - a lot of the time he's off to work by the time I wake up but when we do get to spend the morning together, we're usually straight on our phones, checking every social media before we properly acknowledge each other, it's not good!

That turned in to a little bit of a ramble but I could go on for hours, there's something so satisfying about making lists and goals for the year ahead. What are your plans for 2015?
Love, Rachael

1 January 2015

2014 Reflection

Happy New Year! I hope you had a wonderful night last night welcoming in 2015, we celebrated the same as last year, at a house party, and had a great night. For me, I feel like 2014 was the year of achievements, I finally passed my driving test and bagged myself both a paid job and a voluntary job all in one month (two of my 2014 resolutions completed) as well as achieving the grades which enabled me to move to my preferred uni for second year and I'm definitely way happier there.

Other goals which were created this time last year were; do one or more charity events, I ran the race for life back in July so can tick that one off. Add some finishing touches to my bedroom, new curtains, fairy lights and other bits and bobs later I can say my bedroom is now complete, although I do think a bedroom is an ever changing space so I'm sure I'll keep adding to it. I also wanted to learn to cook which has not been a success, I guess this was a forgotten goal which I never even attempted to reach. The cliche get healthy and toned was on my list too and it's rather frustrating because for the first half of the year I was in a great exercise routine and had changed my diet for the better, it wasn't perfect but I was slowly seeing changes, however, we went on holiday and it went completely downhill from there. However, I have recently got back to the gym, I can do this!

Some of the more 'deep' goals on my list were to be more motivated and step out of my comfort zone, I feel like with the addition of two jobs to my routine I've definitely had to be more motivated and I've found that a lot less of my days off have been spent in bed and instead I've been up and about being productive. I definitely found it hard at first, juggling everything, and because so many things happened at once it was quite overwhelming and I didn't give myself the opportunity to step back and praise myself for my achievements. Saying that, I do still lack motivation to do uni work and have spent many sleepless nights trying to complete an assignment for the following day. I've improved my confidence so much by stepping out of my comfort zone which has enabled  me to become way more confident as a driver and make new friends at work. The training for my volunteering role involved going on a residential weekend, with people I didn't know, the thought terrified me but I did it and I'm so glad I did.

Finally, my aim to do more fun things and to document 2014 has also been reached with the help of my monthly round up posts and I've been a bit obsessed with taking photos this year. Some highlights include our holiday to Tenerife, a trip to Flamingo Land, a fantastic stay in a log cabin, a few days spent in York and Lee's birthday surprise to Go Ape. There's definitely been lots of nice cinema trips, drives, gatherings, and meals out along the way too.

It's been a pretty great year, here's hoping 2015 follows in it's footsteps. I hope your 2015 is an amazing one.

Love, Rachael x
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