Tuesday, 26 July 2016

Taking A Break || Life Update

The past month or so has been a bit up in the air for me (quite literally)! I've gone on two holidays to Ibiza; one with my friends and then a few days after, one with my parents. This was my first ever holiday with friends and it was one of the best things I have ever done so far in my life! We are certainly not the type to go out clubbing every night... that would literally be my idea of hell. However, this doesn't mean we did not get drunk and have a good time... I mean, c'mon this is me we're talking about... I will always have some sort of alcoholic beverage in my hand haha! 

Most nights ended in my friends and I having some sort of drunken emotional breakdown/conversation (as well as laughing till I cry at a sticker... don't ask); thanks to the large measurements of vodka the hotel barmen decided to give us. This is when I realised, I wasn't just being emotional about my breakup with my ex and general life stuff, I was generally feeling 'mentally unwell' and yeah the vodka did not help haha! 
When I got back from my first trip to Ibiza I managed to 'open up' to my parents and sister about how I was really feeling. Coming from a family who have suffered with anxiety and depression before, I knew something wasn't quite right with me. I'm usually the 'happy one' in my family so to tell them I wasn't feeling truly happy was quite an ordeal for me. My mum had sort of guessed something wasn't right for a while because she would constantly ask if I was ok because I wasn't being my usual self and I was being quiet all the time. 

The next day (the day before I went to Ibiza again) I went to see the doctor to get some sort of 'confirmation' about how I was feeling. Deep down I already knew I had anxiety and depression purely for the fact I had to grow up with my dad and sister having it, so this was just for me to have peace of mind knowing what was wrong with me and how I can find ways to somewhat overcome it. I had struggled for a few months now to find the motivation to even get out of bed in the mornings; which if you know me, is easy to believe because I LOVE my bed however, I was spending an unhealthy amount of time in it just over thinking everything! I have completely lost interest in most things... people say "Take your mind off of it, just read a book" but believe me, it is not that easy. You can't concentrate on anything at all... let alone reading a hundreds of words on hundreds of pages! 

I decided to write a list/letter of things that I was feeling, which I then gave to the doctor to read because I am useless at explaining how I feel. She read it and then asked me to elaborate on a few points, then gave me a little 'depression/anxiety' questionnaire to do, in which I had to score out of 5 (5 being the worst/highest) according to the statements being asked. I scored quite high on that which concluded, I was right, I do have anxiety and depression. The next step was to find out how to deal with it. I knew a few methods already because of my family having to deal with it themselves in the past... so I knew I had good support. 
The hardest thing for me was finding what 'triggered' all of this. I don't think it's down to one particular thing but I have a few things in mind that might have contributed to it. If you have read my blog this past year or two, you would've known how much I struggled with my first year of uni. I won't go into that now because you're probably all bored of hearing about it haha! Then in April my first 'proper' boyfriend and I broke up; he was the first person who made me feel like I meant something and he meant a lot to me... so I have been accepting that and trying to get over him. I then started YouTube and got really into that and my blog was finally getting somewhere after years of working on it... I'm up for an award in the Beauty Blogger Awards, which you can still vote in (use the button on the end of this post).

Things were starting to get a bit better; but what I think truly happened was that I was 'hiding' behind my YouTube and blog. I wasn't being 'me'. I was using that to take my mind off of how I really felt. Which isn't necessarily a bad thing because I kept my mind active but you shouldn't hide away and shut your feelings off, because that's when you bottle it all up like I did and one day it was explode out!

I went to the doctor again on Friday and we just had a general chat and update about how I felt. She is one of the most supportive doctors I have ever met in my life. At my doctors, you only get a 10 minute slot however, she would let me be in there for 20-30 minutes each time and she wouldn't let me leave until she felt I had opened up about everything. She is letting me 'use her' as a counsellor so I don't have to go on one of those massive waiting lists and I won't have to open up again to another person. She is letting me go back to her whenever I feel like I need to talk to someone who isn't my friend or a family member. She can give me a medical point of view... which I like because I feel it explains it more for me. 
As you may have noticed, I have been a bit MIA on my blog and YouTube... I'm not putting any pressure on myself to upload every week on both platforms because even though I have the time... I don't have the motivation and quite frankly I'm not enjoying many things at the moment. I just wanted to do this post to explain why I am not being 'me', why I might miss a few uploads here and there... why I might be a little paranoid bitch on Twitter haha! But bear with me; I need this break and all I want is to not have the pressure of uploading every week because I think that's what is making me not enjoy as much anymore. 

I hope this is ok and you don't all unsubscribe and unfollow and that you stick by me even in my 'meh' times! 
Thank you to all of you on Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and Snapchat for all of the support and love you have been giving me... you have no idea how much it means to me, especially when I'm feeling like this. At the moment, I have no idea why but I feel like everyone secretly hates me on Twitter and any shady tweet is about me so this kind of reassurance is what I need haha! 
I love you allllll <3
I don't know when I'll be uploading next but I'll see you when I see you ;) 

Saturday, 16 July 2016

Four Amazingly Crafty Birthday Gift Ideas || Guest Post*

Remember those lessons back at school? The ones involving coloured paper, scissors and large amounts of PVA glue. There was always the artistic, crafty student who had no difficulty creating beautiful collages out of newspaper cuttings and balloons! The rest of us had to suffer in sticky silence. They were the ones that always brought in daisy chains and beautiful little arty gifts for the other students and teachers on their birthdays.

If PVA, art and a bit of creativity sounds like a recipe for PSTD instead of fun, don’t worry: these four creative birthday gifts for your friends are so easy anyone can do them.

Homemade Hot Chocolate on a Spoon

You might be thinking, “where’s the PVA glue in hot chocolate, is that how we get it on the spoon?”. There’s no need for glue in this one, just a bit of cooking!

Image source: http://www.irresistable.fr/chocolat-chaud-nouveau/

Don’t they look amazing?

All you’ll need is 250ml of cream, 350ml of condensed milk, and lots of chocolate. (I mean lots!) Aim for around 600g of the birthday boy or girl’s favourite chocolate!

If you’re making a few batches you can even flavour each one for a range of hot chocolatey birthday treats. Orange, vanilla, or hazelnut are classics, but don’t be afraid to experiment.

Add the cream and milk to the pan and slowly heat, occasionally stirring. Add the chocolate and remove the pan from the heat. After around eight minutes, bring the pan back to a low heat and stir in any unmelted chocolate – make sure it’s all melted.

When it’s all just gooey goodness, pour the mixture into a baking tray and store it somewhere cool overnight. Cut the set chocolate into cubes no larger than 3cm x 3cm and just push a spoon into each one. For bonus points, get creative, add marshmallows to the stick, or sprinkles and even caramel!
Hot chocolate is perfect for those winter birthdays and even makes for a pretty amazing Christmas present too!

Homemade Spa in A Jar

Girls, what’s better than a day at the spa? As much as you and your bezzie love the spa, sometimes our spa fund money goes on other things like bills and rent! Bring the spa home with this awesome spa in a jar idea.

Find yourself a sizeable mason jar and add:
·       Lipstick
·       Mascara
·       Face masks and sleeping masks
·       Fake eyelashes
·       Creams, moisturiser and lotion
·       Nail polish and remover

Top it all off with a brand new set of manicure tools and lots of ribbon! The spa in the jar is simple and painless, leaving you with more time to worry about birthday cards!

DIY Bath Bombs

Everyone loves a bath bomb, but have you ever tried making your own? It couldn’t be simpler!
You’ll need:
·       Food colouring of your choice
·       250ml citric acid
·       250g baking soda
·       125g Epsom salts
·       125g corn starch
·       125ml olive oil
·       12 drops of scented oils

      It’s as simple as adding the ingredients to a bowl and mixing until the mixture forms a doughy substance. Form the mixture into balls about the size of a clenched fist and find a suitable mould. Tightly wrap each ball in plenty of cling film and you’re ready to go! Once they’ve set they’re ready for the bath.

Personalised Wine Crate Gift Box

If you don’t have a spare wine crate sitting around the house, which I bet you all do (I’m looking at you, white wine girls) you can pick up the ‘Skogsta’ from IKEA in three different sizes. We’re going to turn our ordinary wine crate into a gorgeous, personalised crate of gifts for their birthday.

Image source: https://pixabay.com/en/crate-beer-vintage-antique-alcohol-895939/

Of course, if we’re using a wine crate we might as well start there with a cheeky bottle (or three) of wine. Make sure you pad the bottom of the crate with plenty of hay, lots of scrunched tissue paper will work too if you want to get extra crafty. Throw in plenty of flower petals and a touch of fragrance.

Scatter a number of polaroid pictures in the hay and lots of cute little messages on paper to top off the decoration. Finish up by adding lots of little gifts like: bags of artisan coffee, maybe some of the bath bombs or hot chocolate spoons from earlier too (hint hint). You don’t even need to wrap the crate - you could even fill the crate with twelve ‘spa in a jar’s, one a month until their next birthday!

Be careful when transporting carrying it though, unless you want your house to look more like a barn than a home! Definitely avoid public transport – in general, check out the 10 reasons why I hate public transport to see where I’m coming from!

*This is a guest post. All content was written for me/my blog.