A London Trip w/ Eventbrite

Friday 29 July 2016

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Since I finished school, I’ve had plenty of spare time on my hands. While I was in school I’d already  heard of some of the amazing plans many of my classmates had. I wanted to get out of my house - away from the FRIENDS box sets - and actually, do something. I started to get serious FOMO (Fear Of Missing Out). I mean you’ve just got to look at some of my Pinterest boards to realise that I pine after places that are still unknown to me. 

As part of my efforts to GOMO (Go Out More Often, a campaign started by Eventbrite to end FOMO) this summer, my nan and I took a 3 day trip to London this week. 

We arrived on Monday morning. After dropping off our bags at the hotel, we went to Garfunkel’s for an early lunch. Their breakfast menu was still just about running, so I had some of their pancakes which were marvellous! We then headed to Foyles bookshop - one of my absolute favourite places! We spent hours in there and in the end I bought 3 books and for me, that shows a lot of self-control. Using my London Pass I also received a free book, which is never a bad thing!

That night, we had tickets booked for Kenneth Branagh's production of Romeo and Juliet, however, as there was no one to play Romeo as both the lead and understudy were injured, the showing was cancelled. Nonetheless, we sought out another show to see instead. Mamma Mia! was on and we managed to get some of the last tickets to see it. It was such an incredible show! I’ve been singing ABBA songs constantly ever since. 

On Tuesday, we got up early and then headed over to Shakespeare’s Globe via a tour bus. It’s safe to say that I completely nerded out. As a general literary geek, you can imagine my excitement. We were taken on a guided tour of the Globe, which was fascinating! The atmosphere in the theatre was amazing, I can imagine that seeing a play there would be just spectacular.

After a quick lunch, we took the bus to Westminster Abbey. We took an audio tour and it was so interesting. I saw the tomb of Elizabeth I, Mary I and Mary Queen of Scots which I loved! I love their stories and that whole era, so it was great to see them. The tombs of Elizabeth and Mary Queen of Scots were opposite each other and equally grand, which I thought was hilarious. Poet’s Corner was also really cool - they had so many people there that I’d read or been recommended, including a plaque to my beloved Jane Austen.

In the afternoon we headed over to the Royal Albert Hall. Again, we went on a tour and it was fascinating. It’s an amazing building and we were able to hear some of the rehearsals for that night’s prom, meaning that we heard parts of a new piece before its official premiere! We had a lovely meal in one of the hall’s restaurants and decided to try and get tickets for that night’s Prom! We managed to get tickets off to the side but still had a great view - particularly of the soloist Ray Chen, who performed the violin concerto No.1 in G minor by Bruch incredibly. I was actually mesmerised. The audience gave him a huge round of applause and then he returned and performed another piece, this time on his own. It’s fair to say that my first prom was unforgettable.

Wednesday, we went to Hampton Court Palace. Again, as a History nerd, this was like heaven for me. We didn’t get to go everywhere as we didn’t have enough time. It was fantastic seeing the places that I had read about for years and finding out new facts about the stories I already knew so much about. 

On Monday we had rearranged our Romeo and Juliet tickets to the performance on Wednesday but weren’t hopeful that we would be seeing it. The Wednesday show was still on, to our surprise, and we saw a brilliant performance. I actually got chills at the end. I laughed more than I had expected to (I mean, it’s Romeo and Juliet, there “never was a story of more woe”.) I have to say that one of the standout performances was Derek Jacobi’s Mercutio. Absolutely brilliant.

London is full of so many events and I’ve had such a great few days exploring the city and finding out more about what it has to offer. 

To learn more about Eventbrite’s campaign to end FOMO, to plan your own event and track RSVPs online or to find out about events near you, click here and make sure to tell me about your plans to GOMO this summer! 

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July 2016 | Monthly Wrap Up

Wednesday 27 July 2016

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July has definitely been the most relaxed month of this year. It’s made a nice change.

Favourite part?

That’s really difficult because I’ve had some great days this month. At the beginning of the month, my family and I spent a weekend at Centerparcs with some family friends, which was lovely. 

I’ve had quite a few days where I’ve seen my friends, which have been great days as always. I’ve also been trying to cook more and I’ve really enjoyed it. I love cooking meals for me family and some cake here and there if I can (one excuse was for my Dad’s birthday!).

Last week I visited some of my friends in Wales for about 6 days and it was lovely to see them and to catch up, as I haven’t seen most of them in months! 

As you’re reading this, I’ll be in London. I’m staying there from Monday to Thursday and I know it’s going to have been great!

Quite an exciting month really. But relaxed at the same time.

Best read?

I read Me, Earl and the Dying Girl by Jesse Andrews this month. It was refreshingly different, and I like the fact that it didn’t romanticise cancer in any way. However, I didn’t feel that it was as great as it’s been cracked up to be. Another case of the hype raising my expectations too high, I think.

I’ve also been reading The Time of My Life by Cecelia Ahern, which has been good so far, but I don’t think it’s going to make it as a favourite Ahern book of mine.

Favourite tunes?

I’ve been seriously obsessed with Regina Spektor this month. You may have seen me mention her before in another monthly wrap-up, but this time, I’ve been listening to her so much more. Us is still a favourite, however, I am completely in love with the songs Samson, Laughing With and Fidelity. I’ve discovered way more of her songs. They’re so good and I would recommend them to anyone! (She’s got new music coming out too - eek!)

What did I learn?

Again, this one’s a bit ambiguous for me right now. Maybe that some people only stay in your life for a certain amount of time and that’s okay. That some silences can be really comfortable and enjoyable, particularly if they’re shared with some close friends. 

What’s happening next month?

August: the month of results. I don’t think I have much planned until the latter half of the month, where I’ll be heading over to Dubrovnik, Croatia for a little over a week (expect a post after I come back!) and then return just in time for Results Day! 

What’s been on my mind?

I don’t know really. College, trying to be more productive and creative, trying to plan trips and times that I’ll see my friends. 

Since the attacks on Nice, everything terrible that’s been happening in the world now seems a lot more personal to me too. As you may know, Nice is somewhere I visited recently and have many happy memories there, even if they do only span over about 4 days. Seeing a place you love being damaged really hits home everything that has happened. It’s made me more conscious of all the attacks that have been occurring globally on such a sickeningly regular basis.

Favourite blogger/vlogger?

Would it be cheating if I said Through Our Eyes, which is the new group blog I’m part of? Nah! It launched this month and it’s been such fun to do. I love reading the other girls’ posts too!

Favourite post?

Not to toot my own trumpet, but I’ve loved a lot of my posts this month. For some reason, they’ve been more enjoyable to write (and I LOVED writing all my blog posts!). Maybe it's the absence of exam stress. 11 Problems Welsh People in England Will Recognise was quite a funny one to write, and A-Z Travel List was really interesting as it required more research and allowed me to find out about loads of different places that I could visit. Please have a look at some of my posts this month. I'm really proud of them all and it would mean a lot!

Biggest inspiration?

I suppose, seeing my friends, having a newfound freedom and especially seeing how hard all the other TOE girls work. We have a really encouraging group, and it’s a really inspiring group to be a part of.

Any other favourites?

Monster Munch have been a massive favourite of mine. I’ve eaten so many! FRIENDS, The Flash, Glee and Brooklyn-99 have been the shows I’ve watched this month. I’ve started Glee again, oops…

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My Alternate Timelines

Monday 25 July 2016

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I have this kind of weird obsession with alternative timelines. I find myself wondering if I’d just spoken to someone instead of someone else, where would that have brought me? Who would I be now if I’d have been part of a different friendship group - if I hadn’t moved house. It can’t be a very healthy thought process, focussing on what could have been, as I’ll always be wanting the knowledge of something that I can never know.

There are so many situations that I think of: what if I’d not started my blog, what if I’d walked the other way down the street, what if I’d been a bit more courageous those times? 

Who would I be now? Would I even recognise myself? Would I even like myself? Would I still have the same friends I have now?

After contemplating the triggers of my alternate timelines, I construct what my life would be like. My friendships, relationships, house, school, room, clothes. There are so many things that could have turned out differently, but didn’t, and lead to the point in which I now live my life and the person I have turned out to be.

As much as I contemplate my alternate timelines, I tell myself to stop yearning for what could have been. It’s not good for me; I should learn to live in the moment. 

But I can’t help wondering: what if?

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5 Ways to Relax This Weekend

Friday 22 July 2016

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Since my exams have finished, I’ve had no sort of pressure on me, which has been great! It’s allowed me to relax a lot, whether by a method I have sworn by for years or have recently discovered. I thought I’d share these with you!

1. Have a long bath

Oldest relaxation tip in the book right? There’s a reason for that. Run yourself a warm bath, maybe with some candles around it and a bath bomb. I like to watch a history documentary when I’m in the bath but then again that’s probably just me being a complete nerd. I’m also one of the dangerous people who drink tea in the bath; I haven’t spilt any tea yet but I don’t think it can be that  long.


2. Playing an instrument

This will only work for specific people, but if you have an interest in it then go for it! As I think I’ve mentioned before, I play the violin and it helps me a lot. If I’m feeling a little overwhelmed I’ll get out my violin and play some of my most loved pieces. 


During the exam season, however, I started to teach myself to play the piano. Whenever I got bored or fed up with revision, I’d take to the piano and try to perfect the easy pieces I’d discovered in the back of a cupboard somewhere. My family may not have appreciated hearing the same 3 pieces over and over and again, but I genuinely found that it helped me forget about exam stress and wind down in the evening.

3. Take advantage of the summer weather!

As the UK is experiencing a bit of a heatwave right now, why not go outside? Take a book into the garden and sunbathe. Go for a walk somewhere - discover a new place near you. Give yourself some time out to think. 

4. Or stay inside and have a lazy day

Catch up on (or rewatch) your favourite TV show in your pyjamas with a blanket and some cereal. Find reruns of a hilariously bad old show or a classic like FRIENDS. Binge-watch some films. If you write, write. Do something creative. All of these can also be used when applied to step 3 too.

5. Find a friend and just talk.

FaceTime an old friend you haven’t seen in ages or someone you’ve seen that day and talk things over. Time with friends always relaxes me, no matter what the conversation topic.

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Why Inside Out is so Important

Wednesday 20 July 2016

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Sometime last year, I went to see the new Disney film Inside Out in the cinema with my brother. We both love Disney, and so were excited to see their latest creation. It could be nothing but fabulous, right? From trailers and promos that I had seen I was expecting to see a happy go lucky film, full of joy (haha, Joy, okay…) and some sort of moral undertone. That’s what you normally think of when a new Disney film is released. 
But oh my, I was not expecting to spend the majority of the film crying my eyes out. I absolutely balled the whole time, much to the embarrassment of my younger brother. I know I wasn’t the only one who cried a lot, as I have been told by quite a few people that it affected them as well and I know that the message is practically universal as many people can identify with the characters in it. Or, at least, the main character, Riley.

Riley is an 11-year-old girl from Minnesota. She loves playing hockey, she has the best friends in the world and her family are great. She’s always had a happy life. She’s always been comfortable. Joy has dominated her emotions and there has been little Sadness in her life.


But then her parents tell her that they will be moving to San Francisco. Riley has to leave everything she knows behind: her friends, her school, her hockey team, her childhood home. Everything. In short, her life is flipped upside down. This is an experience I identify with a lot and that I know many other people do too. I already felt very connected to the character and I wanted her to be okay, knowing how difficult something like that can be. 

My heartstrings were ready to be pulled. 

The rest of the film follows Riley as her life transitions. We see how her emotions (Joy, Sadness, Disgust, Anger and Fear) react to this upheaval and we, therefore, learn a lot about her mental state. 


From being steady and reliable, her emotions are now in chaos. Sadness and Joy get sucked out of ‘headquarters’ and are lost to Riley. She no longer feels happiness or sadness - only Disgust, Anger and Fear. 

Riley’s mental health steadily deteriorates, as her personality ‘islands’ - the things in her life that make her her - fall apart around her. She struggles to communicate her feelings to her parents as Sadness is missing. Sadness: who is shown to be the call for help, which, in turn, would put her onto the path of recovery. 


This film is Disney’s way of depicting mental illness and spreading awareness. Such a massive company, known for its huge following, spreading awareness for an issue that has been widely overlooked until recently. That’s amazing. Particularly when you consider the fact that a lot of young kids will be watching this film and taking in its message. It will help them understand the importance of mental health better and teach them that feelings are better not bottled up. 

Inside Out doesn’t just teach kids (and adults) about mental health, though. It also shows them some valuable lessons about life. Such as, it’s okay to let things go and to leave elements of your childhood behind. This is provided through Bing Bong (Riley’s imaginary friend), as well as many other childhood memories, being forgotten. 


There are so many things that can be taken from this film, I could honestly go on for ages. I think everyone interprets it differently too. There’s probably tonnes of stuff I haven’t picked up on, but you find to be extremely important. 

Please let me know if you think there’s something big you think I’ve missed - I would genuinely love to know!

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11 Problems Every Welsh Person Living in England Will Recognise

Monday 18 July 2016

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So, if you’ve read my blog previously, you will know that I moved to England from Wales. I know that there are lots of people in the same situation as me and I think that some of the experiences I have had probably apply to most of those people as well.

1. Having to describe where you’re from in relation to how close it is from Cardiff

First of all, no I did not live in Cardiff and I did not live in the Valleys. I had to travel 2 hours in the car if I wanted to go to Cardiff. It’s really nowhere near.

2. People being shocked when they discover you’re Welsh but don’t have a Valleys accent

There are countless different accents in Wales. We’re not all Stella.

3. Then being asked to repeat words that show your accent

My accent is a lot more subtle than people would think and really only shows up here and there, particularly with certain words. Once people have discovered which words I say differently to them, I know I’ll be asked to repeat them til the end of time. Thank you guys, thank you.

4. Oh, the sheep jokes

We all know what I’m on about here. The stereotype becomes a constant joke with just about everyone once you’re in England.

5. Hearing people try to pronounce a Welsh word and failing miserably 

Cymru is not said kimroo. Ll does not equal L and Dd does not equal D. Little tricks that will help you annoy fewer Welsh people. But it’s nice to know you’re trying.

6. People not knowing what welsh cakes are

It truly shocked me when I found out that some of my friends didn’t know what welsh cakes were, let alone eaten them. I was horrified and soon rectified this tragedy. Many of my English friends have now seen and eaten a welsh cake (while I’ve been scoffing them in the corner). My mission is complete. 

7. When people ask you if Wales is a county or a country

PEOPLE! Are you serious?!!!?

8. Being asked if you speak fluent Welsh

Sadly that's not one of my talents. I've forgotten most of the Welsh I'd learned in my roughly 12 years in Welsh education since I moved. I can sing you Happy Birthday if you want, though.

9. Then there’s the matter of the Union flag being called the “English flag”

Um no. No no no.

10. Having to travel a long way when visiting friends and family who still live in Wales

As I’m writing this I’m on a 5 and a half hour train journey going to visit my Welsh friends. If I was going with my family it would take about 4 hours in the car. But then again it can be quite relaxing; the seat I’m in right now is very comfortable. 

Oh, but I haven’t mentioned the bridge toll if I was travelling by car. When did that get so expensive?!

11. St. David’s Day here is a bore. 

I just end up eating a load of homemade welsh cakes by myself and wearing my daffodil headband. How patriotic. Plus everyone else is completely oblivious to the significance of the day. 

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