My 2017 in pictures

by - 11:39

Happy new year to all of my friends, family, bloggers, readers etc! I haven't written a blog in quite some time now - over two weeks - and it definitely is difficult getting back in the swing of things after such a lovely Christmas with my family and friends.

I am definitely a good five days late with doing a 'new year' style blog, but surely that means that I have just given myself some extra time to reflect on what a fabulous year 2017 was. I have picked out some key moments of 2017 to reflect on, talk about and generally compile together in one blog post.

This year hasn't been the easiest, whilst there have been so many ups to this year - graduating, new job, travelling to some wonderful countries, not getting glassed on my birthday, not getting dumped due to my bratty and bossy moments, you know, all those sorts of things, I managed to lose my best friend, my baby boy and my tiny little dog who I always just assume is still waiting for me as soon as I walk through the door, yet I just go home to no tiny 'pitter patter' footsteps on the laminate flooring.

Let me start going through my year of 2017 with some photos, from January to December of all the best events that went on through my life. In all fairness, my January started on a high as I travelled to Vegas with my family.This was my first plane ride of the year, who knew that it would lead to many more. We stayed at Luxor, the iconic pyramid hotel and visited the likes of Caesars Palace, Cosmopolitan, New York New York and more. Oh, not to mention that I saw Queen Britney Spears live. Bucket list done.

A few days after returning, I jetted off to Rome with my wonderful boyfriend for a couple of days. He had previously been to Rome, however I hadn't even touched down in Italy, never mind the capital city. We had a great few days, and considering it was our first little trip away together, surprisingly there were no tantrums and arguments. We have noticed that we are different people on city breaks - Adam likes to take things at a very relaxing pace, taking each day as it comes, whereas I am a go-go-go kind of girl from about 9am. There is no harm in either, and we mixed it up each day.

Then back to university. It was a hard few months for me, for every third year, as it was the beginning of dissertation time. My dissertation was on the portrayal of teenagers through the media and whether the media display them in a negative way to create more newsworthy stories. The outcome? That is all outdated and the elderly are actually respect teenagers a lot more nowadays than back in the day. Anyway, here are a few pics from happier times in my last year, when I wasn't crying and screaming.

It wasn't the most exciting university year if I am honest, so I am going to fast-forward right up until April, where me and my bestie took a random trip to Edinburgh with a day's notice. We hopped on that plane, landed early morning and visited all of Edinburgh's lovely sights, stayed for a night and then attempted to climb Arthur's Seat the next day. The key word at that is attempted. We definitely did not make the top, probably didn't even reach half of the way.

Watch our vlog here:

As I mentioned in my introduction, I lost my best friend this year on April 2nd and it was honestly the hardest thing I have ever had to go through. Sure, I have had family members that have died, but I was very young. Ollie grew up with me, or the other way round even, he grew up with me. We are all still unsure on how he died - a seizure, a brain tumour or Westie Lung Disease. Everytime I open my front door I expect him to run to me and he doesn't. When I come in at 3am after a night out I have nobody to share my chicken with and I miss how his little eyes used to light up when I would open a bar of chocolate or say the double-you word - walkies. He was easily the best dog that I could have ever asked for, and it seems like only yesterday we were picking him up from this little farm where he was covered in ticks and fleas. Worth every vet bill, every bite to the face and every half a bar of chocolate I would only get to eat. I miss him everyday and I would actually do anything in the world to bring him back. 

University was finally completed and although I was chuffed to bits that I would never have to write an essay on politics, law or the media again, it was a sad time leaving some of my new besties to go back home. Of course we still all see each other, we make sure of it. Our group chat is currently going off about Dubai/Glasgow - whatever trip takes our fancy. As you can see, there are definitely a range of suggestions being thrown out. We celebrated at the end of university by visiting Madrid. Again, it started as Mexico, then Bali, then Croatia and then finally, we got around to booking Madrid. We had fun, a great night out, a boat trip and some lovely tapas, all in 30 degree heat. Good start to the summer I say!

From here, I had a few interviews before landing a wondering PR job in a specialist travel agency. The only downside is that I had to move away from my friends and family to Gloucester, and although I adore the job and the people, I find myself coming home on the weekends and having nobody to talk to in the evenings. Anyway, I can't complain too much as some people graduate from university doing a job that they don't particularly want to do for a while, so I am lucky to be in such a wonderful job that I enjoy. We had a lovely meal out to celebrate - me, mum, dad and my boyfriend, Adam.

I couldn't start my job until September. Why? Because I visited South East Asia with two of my close friends. Temples, elephants, curry, monkeys - we had the best time and I couldn't have asked for two better people to go with. It was chilled out, it was a blast and we all ended up doing exactly what we wanted to do each day without fail. This is the point where I wish I could upload every photo I have from the trip, but I am only going to select two. My highlight of the entire trip, as probably was the girls', Elephant Nature Park in Chiang Mai - an elephant sanctuary that rescues working elephants. However, my favourite place overall had to be Gili T - no cars meaning limited pollution, the people were friendly and I have honestly never seen a sea so clear. For educational reasons, Cambodia had to be up there too as we spent two days visiting The Killing Fields in Phnom Penh - wow what an eye opener and something so saddening to learn about.

Then I returned, I started work, loved it but of course I was having holiday blues. As soon as I found out that I had 2 days holiday to use, BAM, I booked a city break with Adam to Berlin. I have always said that Amsterdam is my favourite European city and will never be replaced, but hot damn Berlin was very up there, it may have even taken it over. We visited the Brandenburg Gates, we had a lovely 5* spa hotel thanks to bae choosing it and being stubborn about which hotel he wanted to stay in, we had drinks in TV tower and overall we had a nice 3-night stay. Plus, the fact that it was 30 degrees really helped - we were very lucky with the weather considering it was October.

Have you even completed a degree if you don't put on a hat and gown and spend £100 on iconic photos? I did it! In November, I actually graduated, despite most graduations happening in June. We headed to Cheltenham to check into our hotel and then headed up to the Racecourse to collect my hat, gown and eventually after about a million students prior to me, doing my thang on the stage. Of course, it ended with a nice meal with my parents and Adam, a few drinks with the girls and our boyfriends and then a KFC bucket. Amazing. 

This pretty much sums up my year. Overall it was a great year other than the obvious - successful travels, overall academic successes, career successes and a great year for health for me and my family. Here is to hoping that 2018 will be just as successful as this year!

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