My Top 10 Highlights of 2018

My Top 10 Highlights of 2018

We made it to the end of 2018 – wooooooo! It’s been a weird year of up and downs, but I’ve learnt a lot from it. I wanted to share with you just 10 of my highlights from 2018, it was hard to whittle them down! If you’re looking for my bookish favourites of the year you can find those here.

paramore - couple - 10 years - relationship - growing up

Paramore

We kicked off the New Year with another trip to see Paramore, our 4th time together. As you can see Ali still doesn’t want to smile for pictures. Despite how it looks we had a great time!

Becoming A Published Poet

Finding out I was being published and then recieving the final product! I’m a published writer!!! I wonder what I can publish in 2019…

London Book Fair 2018

Visiting the London Book Fair

I was invited to attend the London Book Fair as a blogger with my Mum. It was something I wanted to do for a while and it was an interesting day, even if I did feel a little like a deer in headlights.

Hammies

One became…three. I said no more and then Ali and I went to Pets at Home and we saw our little guys BB & Artoo. I’m now a hamster Mum x3 and I absolutely love my little buddies. They really keep me company when Ali’s away.

YALC

I got to go to YALC! A whole day of being around book people, buying books and it was magical. I also got a pretty impressive book haul, which I’m still making my way through. Hopefully I can finish tme all before next year!

Going freelance & starting my business!

I’d been toying with the idea of going freelance for a few months but thought it was something I would never be able to do, until I had to! I’m now living life as a freelancer and absolutely LOVING it!

Six The Musical

Musicals!

I saw not one but two new musicals this year which I didn’t realise how much I missed! When I was younger I was a total musical nut, I even wanted to be a musical theatre actress when I grew up (more on that in another blog).

I loved Heathers enough to see it twice and I’d happily see Six again when it moves back to London. I’m looking forward to getting more shows in 2019!

10 year anniversary

We made it to 10 years! I’ve been lucky enough to spend the past decade with this wonderful human. He’s pretty great.

Disneyland!

I got to go to Disneyland!!! DISNEYLAND. I loved it so much I wrote not one but two blogs. You can read the first one here and the second here.

I Read 115 Books!

After setting my Goodreads goal at 50 so that I didn’t feel any pressure, I managed to double it and then added some! I read some really amazing books (and some not so amazing books).

There are more things and people that I haven’t had a chance to add but here’s to hoping I have an even better 2019!

Blogmas Day 12: First Christmas in Our Own Home!

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2017 is a special Christmas for me, it’s the first time Ali and I have had our own place for the holidays! While we’ve lived together since the second year of uni we’ve never been somewhere, just the two of us, for the festivities. So we have a tree (at my insistence), we’ve been finalising what our plans are for the day itself and I’ve been generally annoying him with my Elfish tendencies.

We’re very different when it comes to our attitudes towards Christmas Ali’s not really a big Christmas person whereas I have had Christmas songs on in my car since *cough* October *cough*. I couldn’t wait to get us a tree and lights and wrap presents and get the candles on and EVERYTHING CHRISTMAS. Over time, I’m hoping that I can get him to be a little more Elf and a little less Grinch, slowly.

I’m so excited!

Long Distance Love – Visiting on Tour!

 

Sunday night I got to experience a bit of what has been Ali’s day to day life for the past month. I finally got to visit and see the tour, because it was finally in a venue close enough for me to drive down and watch. Sunday night it was at the Hexagon in Reading, about a 40-minute drive for me.

It’s been a while since I’ve seen Ali at work and I’ve never seen him doing something of this size so it’s a totally different situation to when I normally hang out at a venue with a cider and just chill. I got to the venue about 5pm to catch sound check and see the rest of the crew. I’m slightly embarrassed to admit I was so amazed by Natalie Lowe’s dancing I just stood and couldn’t take my eyes off her (yep, I looked like a weirdo).

I got to go on a little tour of the venue before going to sit on the Tour Bus and hang out. It felt so strange seeing Ali’s bunk and his life when he’s not with me and knowing we had about an hour to chill out, talk and get tickets before he went off to work and I found my seat.

I’ve never seen a show like it. Just the energy, the music, the happiness from both the performers and audience. It made me want to learn to dance and made me appreciate how hard everyone on that tour works to make it happen every night. So, of course, I was proud, hell I was bursting with pride, my boy is a part of this incredible show! I even saw his dancing at the side of that stage.

It was hard, at the end of the night leaving him to pack up and get on a bus while I went back to my car to drive home. There were a few tears as I drove home. It’s tough, no matter how much I know he loves it and is having a great time, there’s a small part of me that wishes he was coming home too.

Now that’s it, I’ll see him in 3 weeks! Let’s see what the final 3 weeks hold!

Long Distance Love: 28 Hours, 22 Days.

I haven’t seen my boyfriend in 22 days, 3 weeks and a day. Now, I know there are people who go without seeing their partners for even longer than that! That said, this is our first go at having a long distance relationship while Ali’s away touring with Rip It Up as a Sound Engineer. So when on the first day he told me he would have one day to come home I booked it off immediately, he was mine for a matter of hours.

So, I did what any girlfriend would do, I got up and went to get him in the pouring rain at 3.30 in the morning. I couldn’t stop smiling from the second I got in my car to when I fell asleep an hour later. The best part? We spent most of the day doing nothing. We slept until 11am, cuddled together. We got up and had breakfast, watched Rick and Morty, sat together. I baked while he used his computer. We napped together.

We had 28 hours to make up for 22 days of each others company. I know for a fact I am way more soppy and sentimental about all this, he will admit that. Ali is a lot more chilled and laid back than I am, he always has been. Do I get insecure? Yes. Do I miss him like crazy? Of course. We spoke about this, I told him how I was dealing with it better than I thought, he told me that he was so busy all day he didn’t have much time to think about missing home.

It’s something I didn’t expect us to be doing so soon but if yesterday made anything clear to me, it’s that we’re very much in love. Despite the fact we can only really FaceTime once a week, we can text, call and just know the other one is there. I didn’t think this experience would make me love him more, somehow it has. Wow, how soppy is that. We need to get back to our mocking of each other soon!

I guess I’m writing because if you’d told me 5 years ago we’d be making this work while he was away on for chunks of the year I wouldn’t have believed you. I would have screamed and kicked and said we wouldn’t do that, we couldn’t. The thing is we’ve grown together and as Ali said to me, I’m not 16 anymore, I have my job, my friends, my own life and hobbies at 16 he was absolutely everything to me. Don’t get me wrong he’s still my best friend and my world but he needs to do his thing, I need to do mine.

All in all, I miss him while I write this but when I dropped him off at 7.30 this morning I didn’t cry, I smiled cause I just felt pretty lucky. Those 28 hours will do for now, I am looking forward to getting him home for a bit longer than that though!

Long Distance Love.

It’s been a week and a half since Ali packed up and headed off on a tour bus for two months. This is our first experience at long distance, it’s never been something that we actually had to do and while we were expecting it to happen eventually this came around a lot quicker than we initially anticipated.

So, what’s it been like so far? I think it helps that Ali’s been working a lot of lates and has been away over the summer. That said, it’s definitely not easy. We don’t get that long to talk on the phone which is tough, thankfully we can text and on his day off we can Facetime. We’ve been side by side since we were kids and I think the longest we’ve gone without seeing each other is a few weeks, it’s odd.

There’s definite loneliness and I think the thing I miss most is having everyday access to hugs. Which wasn’t something I thought I would be bothered about, but there we are! This is definitely a learning curve and every day I am so proud of the great job he’s doing, but at the same time I’m definitely looking forward to having cuddles when I next see him.

Yes, your butt looks big in that – honesty in relationships

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It’s a long standing joke, the question, ‘does my butt look big in this?’ Most of the time when watching films, usually a comedy, the partner will exclaim ‘of course not!’, without thinking they will boost your ego. But, what if it does make your butt look big? I’m talking about honesty in general, of course, there are a lot more pressing issues than how your bottom looks in a new piece of clothing. A lot of us say we want a completely honest relationship but if your significant other was to tell you that it did, what would you do? Or would you tell your partner your true feelings?

Ali is an honest person, he always has been. If I ask him for his opinion he’ll tell me. I once asked him if he thought I’d put on weight, he told me ‘yes’ but went on to say if I wanted to do anything about it, he would help me, if not, that’s fine too. We’ve been this way for a long time, even as teenagers he would call me out on my BS. If I was having an argument with a friend and went too far he would tell me. Of course, there have been little white lies, I’m sure. I’m not going out with a saint.

What is great is that it will work both ways, I’ll tell him when I think he’s being too nice or if I have a different opinion on work for example. Have we had arguments form being honest with each other? Of course. Is it always nice? Nope. That said, I’d rather the person I trust the most tell me than him let someone else because he’s too scared to, what kind of relationship is that?

I’m not saying it’s easy, because it’s not. It’s taken us nine years to get to this point. Where we know how to say it as well as what to say without hurting the other person’s feelings. Instead of saying ‘your butt looks huge it’s a no go’, he might say, ‘I’m not sure it shows off your shape that well’ instead. See, honest that it’s not the right dress, not cruel.

What are your tips and troubles with being honest in relationships?

Let me know in the comments below!

The Truth About Being in a Long Term Relationship

A lot of people in my life ask me about my relationship. Ali and I have been together for almost 9 years. We met at school and have been together since the ages of 13 and 14. This isn’t common and I only know one or two other couples who are in a long-term relationship in their early twenties.  There is this fascination whenever new people find out about us and there are a LOT of questions, so I thought why not make a blog post about them.

Do you ever feel like your missing out? 

No, not really. I’m in a relationship where we can do what we want to do. There’s no asking permission or anything like that. I’ll check we haven’t planned anything before finalising plans with friends, out of politeness. I can do what I like and so can he so I don’t feel like I miss anything.

Is it easier now you’ve met someone? 

I don’t have the same stresses in terms of relationships that my friends have, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t without struggles. We’ve been together 9 years so of course, we have disagreements and arguments. I wouldn’t say it’s easier, it takes patience, time and love!

What’s the best part of being with someone for that long? 

We got to grow together. We’ve literally seen each other through our awkward teenage years, through becoming who we are at university. We’ve seen some of the worst parts and some of the best. That’s really special because I’ve seen him become the man he is today and I love it.

Do you have to compromise? 

Of course, we’re two individuals with different opinions.

Dude, why aren’t you married yet?

Do you know how EXPENSIVE it is to get married?! It’s something we’d like to do some day but right now we’re pretty chill living together.

Do you feel like you’re just part of a couple? 

People often think of us as ‘Chloe & Ali’ but I still feel like an individual. I know what I like, he knows what he likes. We have similar friends but different careers, different thoughts and opinions. I think that’s really important in a healthy relationship.

What advice do you have? 

Other people’s opinions can be the worst thing for a relationship. There’s no set way to have a relationship, no strict timeline. As long as there is trust, friendship and respect then you do you!