Wednesday, 25 April 2018

Friendshipping as an Adult is Hard

Five year old Ambi Bambi, with her long blonde hair and block fringe that won a little princess competition on a camping holiday to Great Yarmouth one year, wouldn't have had a problem making friends. I was a care free child that made pals wherever I went. I had no shame. I would impose myself on other children with a simple 'Hi, my name is Amber, do you want to be my friend?' If only it were that simple as an adult...

I have recently moved to Melton Mowbray, an hour away from home and though it's not exactly far, I barely see my family let alone any friends from my home town. Some long distance friends I can go months without seeing and pick up exactly where we left off with little to no communication in between - low maintenance friendships are very hard to come by and I am lucky to have a few. I'll admit, I am a shit communicator and forget to drop a text now and then with a simple 'how ya doing?' but when a friend is in need I am always there.

Last year I lost touch with my main group of girl friends. Throughout the few years I knew them, I felt like I didn't quite belong because they had all been friends for years and I was the latest addition to the bunch. Although I have some fantastic memories of the times we all shared together, when times got tough I don't think we understood one another.

I was going through a rough time in terms of my mental health; I had just walked away from the first person I truly fell in love with because deep down I knew he didn't feel the same way. And so I went in search for everything he couldn't give me in somebody else (wrong thing to do looking back, but needed at the time). This relationship was so rushed and heavy that it turned toxic and ended with a bang, snapping me into action and making me realise what I had done. During that time I had caused damage to my friendships because I shut them out - deep down I was ashamed of the spiral I had got myself in to and how fast things were moving with a new man and I knew they would judge me for it. But they were still there when it all ended and listened as I tried to piece myself back together.

What broke us was when I got into another relationship, the most stable and loving relationship I have ever been in, my current boyfriend, not that they knew this at the time as it was early days. I was trying to learn from my mistakes and take it slower and keep it under wraps until things got more serious. They knew I was seeing someone and it was more serious than I was letting on and didn't agree with me moving on so soon after all the hurt I'd been through. I won't lie, I have issues with being alone and always have. Maybe they didn't understand that. I ended up being pushed out of the group with some very strong opinions - that they 'wouldn't be there to pick up the pieces when this one ends' and I thought to myself that it wasn't even worth arguing over, I would never speak to a friend that way and would have their back even if I didn't agree with their behaviour. I felt hurt, let down and low at the time.

I do miss having a group of girl friends close by to go on dinner dates, have movie marathons and share make-up and gym tips but I don't miss the drunken nights out that always ended in drama and ensuring that I pay enough attention in the group chat to not be considered ignorant.


When I found out my best friend from uni lived in the same town as Stu, my boyfriend, I could not believe my luck! I see her on the regular for games nights, BBQ's and girly date nights. But she's a busy little bee studying for a doctorate so is not always available. Besides, it's good to be sociable and have an extended group of friends and this is something I am trying to rectify. I'd like more friends in my local area that are just a short drive away and would happily welcome me for a quick brew and a chit chat after work. But how to find them?!

I have reached out to some blogging gals in my local area and have met up with one a few times now. She's absolutely lovely and has made me feel a little more content that you can make friends when you reach your mid twenties.

There's also Bumble BFF - an app that was introduced to me by the blogging community as I attended an event recently. If more girls knew about this then it'd be a huge success! I haven't taken the plunge and gone on a 'first friend date' yet but I have been talking to some really nice girls on there and do plan on meeting them in the not so distant future - just making sure I'm not being catfished first - Ha! I will be writing a whole post on this as I would love to raise awareness on this App, it's a fab idea as it makes it easier for women to find others with things in common.

I've also vowed to get back in to a fitness regime as I'm not getting any healthier, or younger for that matter! So I plan on signing up to some classes, going swimming and maybe even joining Slimming World to get myself out there in the local community. When I have a bit more spare cash I'm considering a photography course or a local art group. Just some ideas that may be of interest to you too.

This post has been a long time coming, it's honest and it's raw and it was quite difficult to write the first half of it. I wish making friends at twenty five was as easy as at five years old, though, I have been exploring my options and I am looking forward to making more friends in my adult life.

Can you relate to any of this? How did you become friends with your current gal pals? I would love to know so please leave me a comment below.

Monday, 23 April 2018

Getting More Real

I wrote a post last week on which direction do I take next and how 'I want to get more real', not only in my personal life but also online too. I've had a good think on where I want to take my blog and am ready to get my -typing- on.

I have had a read through some of my latest posts and they just seem to be lacking my personality or any personality at all for that matter. No wonder I've been finding it difficult to stay motivated.  I've been down a rocky road to get me to where I am today - a twenty-five year old, living as an independent adult, having made mistakes (maybe the odd good decision) with a penchant for all kinds of tea and a new found lover of gin.

I once explored a dating series on my blog called Love, Lust & Laughter, unfortunately I deleted the posts because an ex's Dad was stalking my blog, LinkedIn and social media... (weirdo). I know I'm putting myself out there by being online but that was an invasion of my privacy as I hadn't even met him and already he was able to 'get to know me' and pass judgement on me before being introduced to me.

Oh, the perils of the internet, hey?

I had written about previous dating experiences which I didn't expect him to find, let alone want to read! Since then I've kept my blog PC and clear of anything I might be afraid of my future in-laws, family, next door neighbours or colleagues finding out about me. Until now. 

That's right. I've stopped giving a f*ck. I want my writing and my content to reflect ME, not a quietened down version of me. I have a lot of opinions on mental health and relationships and I'm gona voice them, right here on my corner of the internet.

I really enjoyed writing about personal things that I had learnt from and thought I was passing on invaluable advice to my fellow millennial's, so here I am, about to open up and let you get to know me, whether you are my next door neighbour or not.

I would love to get to know you too, so please leave me a comment on this post with something interesting about you. It could be anything, the weirder the better ;)

Tuesday, 17 April 2018

My 25th Birthday Surprise!

The 14th of April, 'Amber's birthday surprise' had been on the calendar for months. I had no idea what Stu (my boyfriend) had planned but I knew he had booked it way back in June last year and had been planning it from then. I was blown away by his generosity and by just how well he knew me, it really was the best day ever so I'm here to tell you all about it.

First of all, we arrived at the train station and got the train in to London Euston, we then took the tube to Tottenham Court Road tube station. As we were walking down Oxford Street, bags trailing on their wheels behind us, I was getting more and more excited about where our destination may be... until we turned down a side street and there it was, The Bloomsbury Hotel!

We checked in but the room wasn't quite ready so the porter took our bags and Stu treated me to some cocktails at the bar. Stu had a classic Old Fashioned, and I had a gin, apple and elder-flower cocktail. The surroundings were stunning as you can see below, it was full of extravagant mis-match furniture, bright orange/peachy colours and so bright as it was a gorgeous sunshine-y day. Outside there were beautiful flower walls, though it was pretty busy so I didn't manage to get any snaps to show I'm afraid. 

As I took my first sip of my cocktail, Stu pulled out an envelope with tickets inside for the next surprise - he had booked us Harry Potter and the Cursed Child Tickets! I was ecstatic as I had always wanted to see it. The first part was at 2pm so we drank up and made our way to the theatre, just a short walk away. 

After Part 1, we had time to venture into Soho to find where Stu had booked a table for dinner which was at The Ivy Soho Brassiere. I had mentioned previously that I would love to visit one of The Ivy restaurants so this was a lovely and thoughtful idea. I ordered scallops to start and lobster for my main - so tasty! I'm such a foodie (as you probably know) so this was a real treat. 

Part 2 of the play began at around 7pm and went on until late. I was blown away by the special effects and loved every minute of re-entering the wizarding world right before my eyes. The story is great and I would definitely recommend you go and see it if you're a Harry Potter fan. (I won't go into too much detail as I don't want to give away any spoilers!) 

We then walked back to the hotel and found the room covered in rose petals and a note left with a chocolate pudding, wishing me a happy birthday. The hotel really went above and beyond for us and made the stay that extra special. Stu had thought of absolutely everything and I felt like a princess all day. It was so romantic, dreamy and everything I could have wished for and more. 

I can't quite believe I am now a quarter of a century years old - ha! I'm about ready for a quarter life crisis I think. Just kidding, I am looking forward to all that the future holds.

Have you been to see the Harry Potter and the Cursed Child play or read it? What did you think to the story? 

Love Amber x

Monday, 16 April 2018

Which Direction Do I Take Next?

I write this post from my soft office (aka, my bed), in my Toy Story pyjamas with an episode of friends on in the background and if I'm honest, I'm feeling pretty flat and I don't know which direction to take next. There are quite a few factors that are contributing to this and I know that only I can make things better. I feel a bit stuck, de-motivated and without a plan for the future. If you're feeling similar then I'm here to tell you, you are not alone.

If you've been following me for a while now, you will know that has existed for a few years. A blogging schedule has never existed and I found blogging when the mood struck worked for me. Until now. I would love to make a career out of my creative work and not just consider it as a hobby. This year I have gone part time so that I have more time to concentrate on my creative work and try and find something that really works for me and makes me want to jump out of bed in the morning. I have always been a creative person and would love to work part time and have my creative work keep me ticking over, maybe even one day, blog or come up with an amazing idea that'll mean I can work for myself full time. That's the dream that many of us want, but in my head I don't want it to be a dream, it's a goal and I am willing to work hard to make it happen.

Uni wasn't for me, or maybe that's because the pressure was on to study an 'academic subject' rather than a creative one. This might be why it didn't work out and I really wish I played to my strengths more and realised what I was good at when I was younger. Instead I was very confused and let people pull me this way and that without grounding myself and thinking about what I really wanted. Shoulda, woulda, coulda, am I right?

I have recently started to explore my options. I've tapped into YouTube, a second food related blog and illustrations, I started writing a book months back and am considering a cook book for the future. But should I be sticking to just one idea?! Should I pursue one project, smash that and move on to the next or do I juggle them all? The trouble is, it's hard to know which basket to put all your eggs in and know what is going to be successful isn't it? This is what's making me feel flat and de-motivated. I just don't know where to go next. The key to me is to keep going, find a routine that works for me and stick to a schedule. So over the coming months, I will be finding that, implementing it and sticking to it.

Improving my home life will also help. I want to get a handle on my life rather than let it just consume me with things like running the house by keeping on top of the cleaning, washing and cooking. I want to exercise more and stop being so lazy and making excuses and I just want to be the best that I can be. Being an adult and having responsibilities is hard, we all struggle and let things pile up but now it's time to tackle that pile. Not everything we see on social media is at it seems, we are all guilty of showing 'the best bits' but I want to get more real.

I know this has been a bit of an unusual post compared to what I usually write about but I think it's important to tell you all where I'm at and what I have planned for the future. I am at a crossroads and I don't know which route to take but I know I'll get there in the end. I'm hoping that writing this post, being honest with not only you as readers of my blog but also with myself, will help ground me and encourage me sort my shit out. I already feel a million times better for writing this and I hope you will offer your insight/thoughts/feelings too if you're feeling the same or have felt similar in the past.

Thanks for sticking with me and reading my ramblings. Would love to know your thoughts and if you ever need someone to chat to, my inbox is always open on social media. We got this.

Love Amber x 

Monday, 2 April 2018

Wishes, Goals & Ambitions for Twenty Five.

In less than two weeks I will be reaching my 25th birthday and officially entering the 'mid-twenties' zone. As scary as that thought may be to me (with a possibility of having a quarter life crisis), I am looking forward to what my mid-twenties will bring. I am also looking forward to my birthday itself as I will be spending it with the people I love and waking up to breakfast in London. SO, I thought I would do a round up of the things I would love for my 25th year including gifts, goals and ambitions. I really hope you enjoy!
| Gifts |

A New Scent
I would love to add a hint of luxury and sophistication to my life with the Clive Christian, perfume gift set for her*. I am a big fan of The Royals and love that the packaging reflects Queen Victoria's Crown as well as the scents themselves smelling absolutely amazing.

I'd love to get my hands on the Charlotte Tilbury Bronze and Glow palette as I am in search of the perfect contour and highlight combination. I discovered Charlotte Tilbury last year and have been lusting over the brand ever since.

I would also like to get my hands on the new Urban Decay Petite Heat Palette as it is a great size and includes some lovely shades to take on our summer holiday in June. I have always loved the Urban Decay eye shadow palettes as they last such a long time.

I have been wearing a lot of shirts/blouses recently as they are great for work and are really flattering on so I would really like the above JDY star print shirt. They are great with either a pair of jeans for a casual day look or a high-waisted skirt for work/night.

I don't have many flat shoes and find myself always wearing the same ones so I would like these NewLook Wide Fit Cream Crochet Espadrilles. They'd be perfect for sunshine-y days and they are so pretty.

I am candle OBSESSED as my boyfriend would tell you, so I would really love to add some more luxurious scents to my collection. The latest one I have my eye on is the Jo Malone Lavender and Lovage scented candle.
| Goals & Ambitions | 

I have a few goals for this year which I would love to be able to conquer in terms of both my personal life and my life online. I have taken some huge steps over the last year which have encouraged me to go after what I really want so I hope to continue this! 

1. Stick to a blog and YouTube schedule and outline what this will be. I am thinking Wednesdays and Sundays for YouTube and maybe twice a week on the blog - Mondays and Fridays. (Still in the process of outlining this!) 

2. Attend more blogging events! I have finally stepped out of my comfort zone recently and gone to an event so I am hoping to go to lots more, network with brands/PR's and make friends with other bloggers. 

3. I would love to move house within the next year which means save, save, save!

4. I really want to explore the UK a lot more so I hope to take Pepper (our long-haired dachshund pup) away for some UK mini breaks on a budget. I would love to explore Scotland, The Lake District and so many more places I know Pep would love! 

Do you set yourself birthday goals like me? What would be on your wish list? 

Love Amber xx

*This post includes a paid product placement.
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