*sigh* another year older...

22nd January 2016, I turn twenty four...I'm sat writing this staring at the screen and questioning myself, am I really twenty four? Surely I can't be, this must be some kind of mistake? People still think I look sixteen but reality is, I'm not.

Birthdays are meant to excite us, aren't they?

Don't get me wrong, I was still excited about my birthday. I mean what's not to love about receiving lovely cards with thoughtful messages inside, hugs and well wishes in person and spending the whole day using the excuse 'well, it's my birthday' (yes I totally milk this one)! Oh and eating cake, don't forget the cake!

But this is the first year it's filled me with dread too. I'm feeling so anxious about all the judgments that are to come. All the expectations. All the comparisons. These are the things that can tear a person down, they can destroy a persons soul.

Life is different for every single one of us. So why should I be bothered about other peoples judgments towards me? I really shouldn't give a sh*t! But I do, because I'm only human. Admittedly though I'm gradually getting to that point though, where I'm realizing that my life is my life. 

I'm the one living it.

We really aren't robots, we aren't programmed to live life a set way. Far from it, life is very unpredictable. Different things happen that will try and break us. Things happen that will take everything away from us and make us work our butts off to get back what was once a normal life (anxiety I'm looking at you)!

Does it really matter that I'm not living life by the so called rules and expectations? Does this make me any less of a person? No, it doesn't. Far from it.

But you know what, with all the expectations, judgments and comparisons flying around I do know a few things for sure.

I'm the one who's been through what I've been through. I'm the one who knows exactly what it feels like to be me. I'm the one who knows fully how much I've grown as a person. I'm the one who knows what I'm capable of. I'm the one who knows my strengths and my weaknesses. I'm the one who knows me.

At the end of the day, the only person who can judge me and set any kind of expectations and comparisons against others is me. I choose to live my life the way I want to live it.

From now on I'm going to let other people's remarks, comments and judgments go in one ear and out the other because life is too short to care what other people think.

2015, you've been pretty good!

2016 is here, let's take a look back over 2015! I never used to do this, the years would just roll into each other but now I have my own little space on the internet, I love recapping and smiling at the good times that have been.

I've gone through my diary and blog archive (like I do every year) to see what has happened, what has been good, what has been not so good, what I consider as stuff worth sharing and today I'm going to roll it into one great big post. You have been warned! It'll more than likely be extremely long and waffley, what more could you ask for?

January saw me create a list of twelve goals...'one year, twelve goals'. I've recently wrote a blog post on how I did, how many of the goals I completed (I didn't complete them all)...you can check that out in 'one year, twelve goals...complete!'

January is my birthday month and this year I got the most amazing cupcakes known to man, honestly check them out for yourself! You will be amazed and maybe a little jealous too?! They tasted just as good as they looked too. I don't know how Becky (the lady who makes the cakes) never makes a bad batch! Seriously she has a skill!

I also created a list of 'five things I'm proud of myself for...'.

FebruaryI took (fifty) five for time to talk day. Time to talk day is coming around next month again, woo hoo! Five minutes, so little time but that little time can still help beat the stigma surrounding mental health.

I wrote a letter to my blog, because I mean why not? It's helped me sooo much and I'd been blogging for TWO whole years!

 A random fashion post also happened...'how I look 'stylish' on a dog walk'. Random but I quite enjoyed it! Plus I mean Pudding (the dog) is adorable.

March, March, March...well, the year got pretty anxiety provoking from this point. As if attending a concert wasn't anxiety provoking enough, let's just add singing on the radio in to the mix. When I say singing, we can use that word very loosely. I got the words wrong, but still did it and won tickets to see Olly Murs!

I decided to create some Red Nose Day nails and shared a step by step guide how to create them, maybe you could give them a go for this year?

March was also the month where I'd clearly watched farrrr too much Pretty Little Liars and thought I surely wouldn't be the only one so I created a list, a list of you know you've watched too much Pretty Little Liars when...

I started my blog when I was really struggling with my anxiety and panic attacks, posts about them now aren't as often as they were. Pretty much every post used to be about my mental health but as I've got better I've decided to continue blogging but about other things in my life too. But one post that I do think is a pretty good post if I do say so myself, is 'you have a mental health problem? don't tell anyone...i'm kidding! speak up, be brave and be heard! beat that stigma!'

April was the month I saw Olly Murs LIVE! You seriously can't beat live music. Olly without a doubt knows how to put on a show. Every experience is a learning curve, so after going to the concert I decided it might be a good idea to share my top tips for anxiety and concerts put together.

Mental health is back in the mix (let's be honest, it never fully leaves here), I'm pretty proud of my writing in the post I wrote called 'anxiety, a love/hate relationship?'

May, well May whizzed by in a flash! In May I started my new job, seven months down the line I'm still there! WOOHOO, I'm soooo glad I left my previous job because I was just unhappy, I could feel it taking my sparkle away from me. Now I love going to work, life is tough enough as it is without making it harder for ourselves. Find something you enjoy, find something you love and just do it!

Speaking of love, I've got a lot of love for these three...Jamie, Dave & Pep came to visit. I had such a wonderful time and I want to see them again, not via a screen. If I could see them a lot more often other than via a screen that would be great...face to face beats face time any day of the week!

Love must be in the air because in May I also shared my latest love for Seventeen Gel Colour...

June... More live music, The Vamps! Of course I blogged about it, of course I've brought tickets to see them this year too. I seriously can't wait!

June was the month for Hillary's craft competition this year, I created a noticeboard and broke it down into a step by step guide how to make one yourself...

Another express myself kind of post, waffling away about 'being alone...is it really so bad? Is it against the rules?'

August, a month of more blog posts...not really real life experiences. I shared 'my thoughts and theories on Pretty Little Liars...'

A few weeks after that we had 'the big 'A' reveal...'

Another post for sharing (one of my most popular posts to date)...'inspirational reads, Katie Piper's books'. Read them, read them again, tell a friend, tell another friend...honestly, they are fabulous!

September, you can tell I'm working because blog posts are getting less often. The only post I created in September was 'looking back over old blog posts, part two...'. I seriously enjoy creating them posts. It really is nice to read things and see how far I've come.

October, October... 'a whole lot of chitty chat' turned two! WOO HOO!

I'm only going to share two posts in this month because they are both mental health related and I'm wanting to bash that stigma some more.

November, I went segwaying. I've never been segwaying, despite it being a little weird experience (it made me feel a little sick, uneasy and off balance, have you seen them things?!), it was overall really good though! The weirdness was soon over shadowed by the buzz of it. I'd recommend it! I want to go again.

I took my first step in my Invisalign journey in November but mainly waffled about it in December.

December, Invisalign was pretty much all I had to chat about since I was busy working or at the dentists, you know...or sat on my bum doing very little after work :) living the dream?

One thing I did at the end of December though was blog about it being okay to not be okay at 'the most wonderful time of the year'.

Well, it's safe to say when you sit down and look back over your year, it appears you've done a lot more than you actually think. If anyone manages to get to the end of this without a) closing the page or b) falling asleep. I'll be amazed! Thanks for sticking around!

Share with me your highlights of 2015 too? :)

one year, twelve goals...complete!

2016 already? Seriously, where did 2015 go? It flew by.

This time last year I set myself twelve goals to achieve within the year. Twelve goals working out as one per month. How did I do? Let's see...

1. Meet atleast 3 online friends.
YES, YES, YES...I did it! Read all about when Jamie, Dave & Pepper came to visit here!

2. Attend one or more concerts.
YESSSSSS! I've been to 2 and a half concerts (we don't need to talk about the half)! Olly Murs and The Vamps were both incredible, I wouldn't doubt going to see them again! Already got my tickets to see The Vamps this year!

3. Save more money than I spend.
No, great big fail on this goal!

4. Take a weekend break.
No, another fail!

5. Read one book every month.
I think I've managed a grand total of 8. Since my last update I've read Carrie Hope Fletcher's book, 'All I Know Now'. Would I recommend it? Yes, yes I would! A very easy, light read which is relatable and will make you giggle.

6. Tackle the stigma surrounding mental health more.
I'm going with this as a goal achieved. My boss at work now knows about my anxiety and panic attacks. Plus I attended a mental health in the work place event with work so that's a bonus.

7. Drink more water.
I drink a lot more water now compared to what I did this time last year so that's an achievement.

8. Spread my blogging wings more.
Over the whole year, yes. My wings have spread more compared to last year I'd say. Another goal achieved but there is always room for improvement, 2016 could be the time.

9. Keep my diary up to date.
No, let's try again in 2016!

10. Cook more meals.
No, I need to make more time for this and maybe plan meals a week in advance.

11. Enquire more about braces.
This goal is well and truly achieved, surely it's worth double points for not only enquiring but actually going ahead with it. I'm currently rocking the Invisalign look!

12. Move...more.
I'd say yes. I do move more...when I'm at work, every lunch break I make sure I go for a walk to stretch my legs and the same goes for about 3 o'clock when we have the dog in the office (we have a office dog)!

Seven out of twelve goals isn't bad going if you ask me.

Did you do something similar last year? Or maybe you've created a list of goals this year?
Share them with me please :)