Life Update | 2016 Recap

Happy New Year! It feels strange to finally be back to blogging but I’m so glad that I’ve managed to pick up my laptop and start somewhere.

In all honesty, 2016 hasn’t been the greatest year for me. And no, not because the UK voted to leave the EU or because Donald Trump was elected US President. And no, not because of the mountains of celebrity deaths that happened this year, either, although all of those things were rubbish too! But I’m hoping that by doing a recap on the year will help me to appreciate the good things that did happen this year and move on from the bad. So here goes!

In January, I saw in the New Year full of hope for the year ahead. I had just received news a couple of weeks earlier that I had managed to secure a traineeship at a law firm for when I finally complete my postgraduate diploma. I genuinely couldn’t believe it when I got the phonecall and spent most of January and February awaiting an official letter to offer me the position, which I did finally receive in early February. As I’m still seeing so many of my friends and peers at university struggle to find a traineeship, I can appreciate even more now how lucky I am to have secured this job and I’m now really looking forward to starting this September – I’m actually going to be a lawyer!

Things started to deteriorate slightly more rapidly in late February/March, however, as my dissertation deadline was looming and I found that I had not done nearly as much work as I should have by that point. I ended up in a terrible habit of regularly staying up until 6am and wakening again at 11am to study the whole of the next day until 6am again for weeks and weeks on end until I finally completed all 11,000 words of my dissertation. It was a massive relief to finally hand it in.

My relief was shortlived, though, as I unfortunately received the awful news that my grandad had been diagnosed with leukemia and he ended up spending over a month in hospital so things were turned upside down for a while, although he’s thankfully doing a bit better now.

I then had my exams in May which wasn’t easy given everything else that was going on at home and in my personal life too. I got through it, though, and finally completed my last exam of my undergraduate degree – a massive accomplishment, especially as I had completely fallen out of love with university at that point!

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Edinburgh, Scotland

In June, I spent the week away in Edinburgh with my boyfriend and tried to distract myself from the degree results that I was expecting. We didn’t have a release date for our results, but knew roughly when the exam board would be meeting and so I suspected that I would be getting my results either when I was away or as soon as I returned home. Three days into our stay, I woke up to a text saying that my degree results were in – honestly, I didn’t have much hope. I fully expected to get a 2:2 degree which would still have been an achievement, but wasn’t the result I had been striving for over the past four years. It was such a shock, therefore, when I realised that I had actually managed to get a 2:1 degree in Scots Law (Honours) and I couldn’t help but randomly burst into tears over the next few days as I celebrated. All the stress and worry had actually been worth it and I didn’t dread graduating as much anymore!

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My graduation took place just a short month later and it was a wonderful day spent with my family and my boyfriend – the weather even stayed good for it, which is rare in Scotland! I’ll admit, I was super nervous and trying to organise photographs, tickets and my outfit beforehand just made me stress even more, but I managed to make it across that stage without falling in my heels which is what I was most worried about!

At this time, I was working part-time having managed to secure a temporary position with the charity that I’ve been volunteering with for the past four years. I was really looking forward to it, but unfortunately I found that the more time I spent there, the more fed up I became and soon I couldn’t wait for university to start again. I found out after my graduation that I had secured a place for my postgraduate diploma at the same university I did my undergraduate degree at and that I would be starting it in early September.

At this point, I feel obliged to warn anyone who’s reading that the rest of this post doesn’t have a happy ending – all the good things that happened to me throughout 2016 have now been written about and September is unfortunately where everything really fell apart. I mentioned previously that after I had handed in my dissertation, my personal life started to suffer and things came to a head in September when my relationship with my boyfriend of four years ended. Honestly, I’m not sure how to write about it as it’s still quite fresh, raw and painful but this is also around the time that I completely lost motivation for blogging. I’m not, of course, solely blaming that as university had become quite hard at this point as well – my life just became so hectic and different very quickly and I found it quite hard to deal with so unfortunately blogging just took a complete backseat.

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Thankfully, I have managed (for the most part) to keep up with my work at university and I’m working towards overcoming the issues that I’m dealing with in my personal life. A lot still hurts and it’s been difficult to go from having the rest of my life planned with someone to not knowing what the next year will hold, but I think I’m getting there, one baby step at a time, and I’m learning a lot about myself. It’s hard to stay hopeful for 2017 but I’m going to work hard at focusing on improving myself, spending more time with my friends and family and getting through my diploma so that I can start my job in September and move forward with my life.

And hopefully I won’t fall away from blogging like this again!

Stacey x

 

 

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Lifestyle | Review | Lanson Rosé 1760 Champagne @ Graduation

Last month, I had the amazing experience of graduating from university with a 2:1 in LLB Law! I was super nervous for it (because there’s so much to worry about!) but had the best day ever – I wish I could do it all over again! I was surrounded by the best people in my life (family, friends and my boyfriend) and we all celebrated some very hard work and many the many breakdowns it’s caused me in the past four years.

Beforehand, my family were definitely more excited than I was. I was worrying and fussing over absolutely everything – my outfit, my makeup, my hair, falling over on stage, tripping up, where to go, what to do … the list was endless. But anyway, my mum was so excited that she decided to buy a bottle of champagne to bring along to celebrate at the reception after the ceremony.

Now, this is a fairly big deal for my family. I’m the eldest sibling and the first person in my immediate family to ever go to university, nevermind graduate from it! We don’t go out for fancy dinners and we definitely don’t buy champagne … but this was a special occasion and my mum wanted to splash out a bit with this wonderful (yet still affordable!) bottle of champagne.

Honestly, I felt a bit guilty when she came home from Tesco with it – that she’d spent money on something that I didn’t see as a massive achievement and, quite honestly, at that time, didn’t even want to do because I was so nervous! But she told me that it had been on offer and was only £30 so that made me feel a bit better.

When I finally graduated, I was relieved. It was nowhere near as stressful as I thought it would be and I definitely couldn’t wait to get some photographs taken with my friends and family before opening the champagne! The reception was held in one of the nicer university buildings that had a gorgeous garden area surrounding it – perfect for taking photographs! So once all that was out of the way, my mum pulled out this bottle of champagne with very classy plastic cups. And it was beautiful.

I didn’t even know you could get rosé champagne – but I would recommend it a million times over! It was so light and fizzy with loads of fruity/berry tones. There was loads in the bottle as well – all five of us had a couple of glasses each which was fabulous. I’m not sure exactly what percentage it was, but I think it was around 12% which, for me, was more than enough! I’m notorious for being an absolute lightweight so by the time I’d had a couple of glasses (and not very much to eat all day), I was feeling amazing and practically flying back to hand in my gown! That might just be me though, who knows.

All in all, I’d fully recommend it to anyone who fancies splashing out a little bit – but on a budget. After all, if you can get a beautiful bottle of rosé champagne for £30, why spend more? And if it’s a special occasion – treat yo’ self!

Stacey x