My Top 15 Moments of 2015!

I wanted to write a 'year in review' post to round off 2015 nicely (inspired by the fabulous Olly - you can read about his amazing year here) but it turned into more of a timeline of all of the foods that I've discovered this year and subsequently, a semi embarrassing photographic journal of how much weight I've gained. Can I hashtag #bootygains in a blog post? But then I came across Charlotte's wonderful post and thought that it was a much more manageable way of summarising what an incredible year I've had! So here are my top 15 moments of 2015 :)

1. REACHING SOME OF MY RECOVERY GOALS.
2015 was a biggie in terms of turning my health around - both physically and mentally. In January, I reached my first target weight in my journey to recovering from anorexia. In May, I reached my next target and as of last week (big shout out to Santa for bringing me lots of yummy foods!) I reached another. Gaining weight has helped me do all of the amazing things that have been thrown at me this year and turned me into a happier and more capable human. Although it's been tough at times, I'm so proud of how far I've managed to come in such a short space of time and so thankful for all of the people who have offered me unwavering support and love throughout the last year.


2. FEELING CONFIDENT WITH MY UNIVERSITY COURSE.
I've always been a bit doubtful of my creative abilities, despite choosing to study a creative degree over an academic one, but this year my confidence has grown more than I could have ever imagined. I feel so lucky that my university is wonderful, my course is perfect for me and that being in the studio feels like an extension of my home because it's made me a lot more focused on my degree. I've pushed myself out of my comfort zone when it comes to design and some of my favourite pieces of work have been created this year through new experimentation!

3. FINDING A DESIGN STYLE THAT FEELS TRUE TO MYSELF.
The last couple of months have been filled with new creative processes, fantastic opportunities and intense workloads but I'm having the best time moving into the second year of my Printed Textiles & Surface Pattern course. I'm creating work that I feel proud of and that highlights the direction I see my career going in. I'm so excited to continue down this path and watch my style develop further! You can follow my progress here!


4. WITHOUT BEING DRAMATIC - FINDING SOMEONE WHO I'M HAPPY TO BE WITH  ♥
2015 has been full of so many amazing memories and I feel very lucky that Joe has been a part of most of them. In January we made our relationship ~official~ and since then we've had the best year full of learning, laughing, fun days out, valuable quiet time and of course, many coffee dates. We moved in together in July with 3 of our other lovely friends and it's made me realise how important it is to have somebody in your life that everything just feels right with. I still find myself getting excited about the little things like drinking tea together in the morning and reading the same book before bed and although we sometimes find ourselves doing very pensioner-like activities, it makes me really happy that I've found someone who I can so comfortably be myself around.


5. WATCHING MY FRIENDS SUCCEED!
One of my most favourite things this year has been watching my friends grow into fantastic, confident and talented people with a real sense of direction and purpose. Although many have had their troubles this year, 2015 seems to be ending on a high note for them all with exciting plans for post-graduate studies, travelling, engagements and weddings (yes, we're at that age now!!) and a clean bill of health all round, thankfully! Constantly being surrounded by such inspiring people is one of the most uplifting feelings and I'm so happy that I get to watch and support them in their own journeys. ♥

6. LIVING IN HALLS...
Living in halls was definitely one of the weirdest experiences of my life but it's not one that I'm likely to forget! I have some really funny memories of living in Liberty Park and I look back on it now with a kind of fond longing for overflowing bins, bean juice stained counters and having 15+ people squished into our living room at all times... Kind of.

7. ...AND MOVING INTO MY FIRST HOUSE AS AN ADULT.
But however nice (or not nice) halls was, moving into my first house has been a learning experience that I feel has really set me up for later life. I've learnt how to pay rent and bills properly, how to wash my own clothes without turning everything pink (lol) and learnt to never choose a basement bedroom because they're cold and spiders like to party in the corners. Valuable life lessons. Being able to get 'house broody' has also meant that I've invested in a lot more furniture and homely decoration than I did when I lived in halls and it's made my environment feel a lot more 'me', which has enabled me to feel a lot more settled in Leeds.


8. TRAVELLING AND EXPLORING NEW PLACES.
I've travelled a lot this year, despite not leaving the country! I've spent time in Leeds, Birmingham, London (including this amazing book shop pictured above!) and Manchester and taken day trips to Harrogate, York, Otley and Wales to escape from the city for a while and breathe in some fresher air. I have some plans to travel further afield next year and look forward to making more memories in new locations!

9. VISITING FAMILY AND APPRECIATING QUALITY TIME WITH THEM MORE.
This year I visited my family a lot more, going home for spontaneous weekends on multiple occasions and to visit for my Granddad and Step Dad's birthdays in the summer. I've definitely come to appreciate my family and how much they do for me so much more this year and I always look forward to going home and spending quality time with them. Some of my best memories of 2015 are winding my mom up with my sister like we used to when I lived at home (sorry, Mom!), drinking tea at my Granny's house and entertaining my niece and nephews with games, stories and cake.


10. FACING MY FEAR OF HEIGHTS... 500FT IN THE AIR.
I've been scared of heights ever since I was little but in the summer my Step Dad bought me and my sister tickets to a zip wiring experience at Zip World Velocity. I ended up lying down, strapped into a harness and launching myself 500ft into the air, travelling at speeds of up to 100mph across a slate quarry in Wales and it was the most exhilarating experience of my life! I never thought I'd come away wanting to do it again but it was incredible and definitely helped me stop fearing heights a little!!

11. SEEING MY FAVOURITE BANDS PERFORM.
In summer I got the opportunity to see two of my favourite bands - Foxing and Tigers Jaw - play together in a tiny venue in Leeds. I forgot how amazing it feels to go to a gig by yourself and yet still feel united with people through the music.

12. MAKING NEW INTERNET FRIENDS...
I've opened up a lot more on the internet this year, whether it's been through Twitter, Instagram or my blog and the response has been incredible. I've connected with so many more people and it's honestly so lovely to open up Twitter and read about people's lives that I genuinely care about. I feel very lucky to have been accepted into such a positive, supportive and funny group of people. I think the power of internet relationships is often looked down upon or overlooked completely but I genuinely wouldn't be where I am today without the support of certain people online -you know who you are! - and it makes me so happy to be able to return that support and see everyone helping each other out.

13. ...AND MEETING OLD ONES!
I also met a few of my long term mutuals from online this year, both on planned occasions and by sheer good timing (fate?) and it's been very interesting to see how easily and naturally internet friendships transfer to "real life" relationships once you get past the kind of awkward "wow, you're a real 3D human that exists!!!" stage. I'm very excited to meet more of you lovely people as 2016 starts!


14. CHRISTMAS!
Couldn't have a top 15 moments of 2015 without including Christmas! It's my favourite time of year and I felt so festive this year. We decorated our house with fairy lights, put up a tree together and had a house roast dinner like a cute little family before returning to our actual families for Christmas day. I love Christmas as I get to treat my family and friends to nice things as a thank you for all they've done for me throughout the year, but it's also really nice to see my whole family taking time out to relax and enjoy themselves over the holiday period. This year I spent half of the holiday with my family and the other half with Joe's family as it was also his 21st birthday and I've come back feeling very happy, refreshed and ready to tackle 2016!

15. PLANNING FOR 2016 TO BE EVEN BETTER :)
I've spent the last couple of months preparing lots of exciting things for 2016! We signed for a new house just before Christmas, and although we have 6 months left in our current house, I'm already browsing online for rugs for our new beautiful wooden floors and getting excited thinking about moving! I'm travelling to Paris in February to show - and hopefully sell!! - my work at Indigo/Premiere Vision and I'm hoping to take another short trip abroad in the summer for my 21st birthday. I'm also in the process of securing work experience for over the Easter break and applying for internships for the summer months. I have a really good feeling about 2016 and I'm excited to build upon all of the progress I've made this year! I have made a few resolutions for 2016 for once so I might share those in another blog post soon! :) Until then, have a fantastic New Year's Eve and here's to hoping 2016 is kind to you all. ♥ 
Love, Hails.

4 comments

  1. Well doen for reaching so many of your goals this year! I hope 2016 will be just as good or even better for you! Have a lovely New Years Eve! xx

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    1. Thank you!! Hope 2016 brings you lots of happiness and good memories xxx

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  2. I cannot help but comment on your post. I am still, despite anything I said or wrote, beyond proud of you for achieving everything you did this past year. I wish I could've been a more present part of it all. I'm not sure if you got my Christmas email, I sent it to you on Christmas Day to your gmail-account. I don't expect a reply, I just hope you received it.

    I love you, little fairy queen. I'm sorry for letting you down.

    Lisa x

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