To New Beginnings

This year was for being daring, right?

I put an offer down on a flat with Dave, we got it, I handed in my notice at work, two weeks later we’ve got the keys and I’m moving to Watford!

I’m moving into a new flat, in a new town and I’m going to be living like a real-life adult! For the first time in forever, Dave and I won’t be in a long distance relationship. Quite the opposite, we’ll be seeing each other every day (I hope he knows what he’s in for). The flat is lovely and my job at the restaurant may be fun, but it was never forever. Call me irresponsible, but I ran out of reasons not to go for it and so I did, I said yes and I couldn’t be happier.

Saying that, I’m currently sat in the middle of my floor, staring at my wardrobe and willing the clothes to fold and pack themselves. This leaving home malarky is as stressful as it is exciting and it is very exciting! Perhaps packing clothes can wait for now. With the help of my mum and a good friend I’ve made a lot of progress today anyway!

I hate to say it, but I think that’s a wrap on chapter two. No sad faces here though, this ending is the start of an exciting new beginning. Next time I write I should be in the flat! I’m smiling hugely just at the thought of it. Chapter three begins soon. Bring it on.

Time flies when you’re having fun

Last time I wrote I was going Christmas shopping and now Christmas has been and gone and a new year has begun. Can you believe it?

I ended the school term on a high – my position at the school having come to an end. On my last day, everyone wished me well and said they hoped I’d pop by from time to time and that I’d stick with it, no-matter how long it takes. I’ve learned so much from my months there. Becoming a music therapist won’t be easy and it may be way in my future yet, but I’ve found a real passion and for that, I am grateful.

Over the Christmas holidays, I’ve seen so much of my family and friends. I’ve eaten so much good food and I’ve received so many wonderful gifts. I couldn’t be more grateful or anymore filled with joy.

I was working last night when the clocks struck midnight and 2017 began, but it was still a surprisingly good start to the year: My manager bought bubbly and we all had a glass when the time came.

Every year I claim I don’t care. New year’s day? Just another day innit? Really, I’m so excited. I love a fresh start. I’m a sucker for a new years resolution. I love opening up a new calender and starting a new diary. I’ve three diaries this year. One wonderfully ordinary. One beautiful travel journal. And the last is a journal of 365 acts of bravery. ‘Do one thing every day that scares you’.  That’s what it says. It’s filled with motivational quotes and in the front it says that the challenge is attributed to Eleanor Roosevelt. What’s not to love!?

The journal was a Christmas gift and is the inspiration for my earlier post ‘Fried egg in a bacon sandwich’ and my New Year’s resolution. I don’t know what this year is going to bring. Whatever the year throws at me, I’m going to be more daring. Say yes more. It’s going to be great. This year’s my year for being brave again.

I’m not sure what I’ve done today that was daring. Perhaps my brave act for today is still to come. What I can tell you is that the quote in my diary for today is…

“Behold the turtle. He makes progress only when he sticks his neck out.” I like it. We all ought to stick our necks out a little more often.

IT’S CHRISTMASSSS

I’m sat in the lounge drinking tea. I’m surrounded by Christmas decorations. The fireplace is cluttered with ornamental robins, Santas, snowmen and candles. The darker it gets outside, the brighter the lights on the tree and in the window shine. The whole room looks cheerful.

I had a piano lesson this afternoon. It’s been nearly five years since I gave up on my grade 5 and decided to focus on my singing. Now that I’m making money again I figure I can afford to allocate funds to getting back on the music band wagon. I’m so excited to be getting back into it again. The lesson was amazing… Just like back in the good old days: I’ve even got a practice diary.

Had a singing lesson last week too! There’s a strong possibility I’m going to be singing in concerts come April next year and as nervous as the thought of that makes me, it’ll be so good to be performing again. It’ll force me into singing more. In the new year, I’m going to pledge to set aside time for music and I’m really going to. I know I say it all the time, but there really is no better cure for butterflies and I need to take advantage of it. I spent just one hour at that piano today and I feel so much better for it.

I’ve one day off this week and it’s tomorrow. I’m going Christmas shopping with one of my best friends and I am so looking forward to it. She’s studying in Cambridge so it’s a chance to get away for the day as well. It’ll be a day full of laughter I’m sure. We both shop alike, so even though we’ve both got loads of presents to buy, it should be a stress free day. We’ll stop for plenty of tea and cake too. We’re going to need it.

I’m still working lots. If you spoke to any of my friends they’d probably tell you I’m a tired mess, but I’m not. I enjoy a grumble over how much work I’m doing and how my feet permanently hurt and how my body clock can’t work out when to sleep and when to wake up anymore, but really, I’m doing alright. I still fit down time in here and there.

It’s the most wonderful time of year and so far, I’m still loving hearing the Christmas songs everywhere I go.

Let her sleep for when she wakes she will move mountains

Today is my grandad’s and my sister’s birthday. I love birthdays. Waking up this morning and jumping out of bed to give them my birthday wishes made me so happy. I love how everyone comes together too. My grandparents were here for the weekend and my brother came home too. My sister’s friends popped ’round with presents, we had bacon sandwiches, looked through old photos for memories sake and then I had to get off to work.

I’ve been at work for most of the afternoon so I’m now feasting on left over birthday cake and drinking the last of the red wine. Did feel a little down about the fact I had to work, but all in all I think it’s worked out okay: I got home in time to see them blow out their birthday candles and it seems to me the two of them have had really lovely days. Well deserved too!

It’s been another long and busy week. Not all work this week though. Managed to fit in an afternoon with the Alzheimer’s Society, an evening with Dave and a couple of evenings with friends. Spent Thursday night drinking cocktails which made a very nice change from carrying them on trays.

Can’t quite believe how quickly Christmas is coming up. Going to have to start making some time for Christmas shopping too. Can definitely tell winter is on the way. I’ve attached the fur back onto the hood of my coat, my scarf rack is out from behind the cupboard and so are my winter boots.

Another busy week ahead, for now I’m just looking forward to an early night. Bed’s going to feel amazing – it always does when you’re tired, especially when you’ve had a glass of wine.

No rest for the wicked

Or so the saying goes. Luckily for me, wickedness aside, I’ve finally got a day off today.

I’m sat in my room with the curtains closed, because it may only be half four, but it is dark outside already! I’ve lit candles and I’ve got Spotify shuffling through my favourite playlist. I’ve eaten a cooked breakfast and a roast lunch. I had a lay-in and a short nap this afternoon. I’m living a life of luxury for the day!

One of my best friends and I are making exciting travelling plans. Watch this space. I’ve started drinking Twining’s Christmas Tea again already. Couldn’t resist. I’m reading Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban again. I’m finally nearly caught up with the Walking Dead. I watched the first episode of Season 7 yesterday. Gobsmacked.

Speaking of gobsmacked, Donald Trump is president of the United States. I was terrified when the result came through. For a morning I considered gathering everyone I love and migrating to Iceland. I had a discussion with my dad about the likelihood of nuclear war and he brought me back down to Earth. I cannot understand how Trump won so many votes. Now I’m just hopeful that he’ll pleasantly surprise us all. If he doesn’t, here’s hoping his powers are restricted.

Planet Earth II’s on tonight. After last week’s epic episode I cannot wait to see what else David Attenborough and the team have in store for us. Cosy evening in front of the tv for me at the end of a thoroughly relaxing day. Feeling rejuvenated and believe it or not, a little melancholy. Enough of nothing. Looking forward to the busy week ahead.

Monday’s the new Sunday

Sun’s shining. I slept in until 10. I’m still in my pyjamas. I’ve done my washing and tidied my room. Other than that, I spent the morning lounging in bed reading and I’ve spent the majority of this afternoon watching The Walking Dead. There’s no roast dinner cooking. That’s the only way I know it’s not Sunday. Just cooked myself up some pasta though and although it’s nothing in comparison, it is pretty yummy.

Life’s a little crazy. Last week, my only day off was Thursday and this week I don’t have a day off. I’m back at the restaurant waitressing tonight and the days that I’m not there this week, I’ll be at the school. The days are merging into one. Weekends are a thing of the past. First week spent properly working two jobs and for now I’m feeling positive. I’m not grumbling! I’m happily busy and whenever I do get a moment to chill I’m making the most of it.

Working at the restaurant is great fun. There’s a real team spirit and no matter how much I complain about my feet hurting, I really enjoy myself while I’m there. There’s so much to think about, I don’t dwell on anything else either.

I’m so excited about getting back into the school this week too! I enjoyed my last week there so much and hope it’ll get better and better moving forwards. With half term behind us, I’m looking forward to the lead up to Christmas too.

For a while there I thought I was crazy to take on more work; I wasn’t sure if taking a waitressing position was at all the right thing to do. I’m an easily stressed person, creating an easily stressful life for myself BUT I am glad I applied and so glad they hired me. I stand by the fact when it comes to life, there is not right or wrong thing to do. It’s all a matter of trial and error. I tried and I’m a happy bunny. No stressed face yet. Here’s hoping the smile sticks.

The Common Cold. Cough, Sniff, Sneeze, Repeat.

Last week was great. Exhausting, but great. I was at the restaurant all day every day except Thursday, training along side a really lovely team of people who I already feel like I can be my weird and wonderful self around. I still can’t carry plates or trays confidently, but hey, everyone else seems confident I’ll get there. I hope they’re right. That aside, all’s well and I can’t wait to get stuck in again this week. Friday night we went out as a staff team and all had such a good time. I’m so excited for the restaurant opening. As well as a little nervous, of course.

Thursday, Dave and I and his family went to see Manchester United play at Old Trafford. They played much better than they did against Chelsea today, thank goodness. It was a really great match, well worth the trek up there and back. We won 4-1 and a couple of the goals were absolutely brilliant!

Yesterday was a lovely day. I caught up with one of my best friends over coffee. We had fish and chips from the chip shop for dinner. I watched Strictly live, for what will probably be the last time this year. (Saturday nights will be spent in the restaurant from now on.) Dave came over later on. We stuck Bicentennial Man on my TV, managed about ten minutes and then fell asleep.

All that’s great and wonderful aside, I’ve got the worst of colds and I feel very sorry for myself. My head literally feels the size of Jupiter. Seeing as, for the near future, I’m going to be working in a school and a busy restaurant, I’ve a feeling I need to get used to fighting off the common cold. Problem is, every time I have a cold I’m convinced it’s the worst one I’ve ever had.

This one is the worst. Honest. The pile of tissues next to my laptop is pretty sizeable. All day I’ve been devoted to mission 101; get rid of cold before training week number two. I’ve drunk lots of coffee, water and orange juice and I’ve eaten heaps. They say feed a cold, whoever they are. Here’s hoping I’ve done enough.

The only way is up

I’m in the kitchen with my mum, bacon’s in the frying pan, I’ve got a cup of tea in hand and I’m a happy bunny. I’m wearing my roughest jeans and a hoodie and I’ve definitely got that Sunday feeling.

Work last week was better than I ever could have imagined. I went back into the school on Monday a nervous wreck of a Bronwen, but when I left that afternoon I’d found my confidence again. Honestly, just like that. It was like something clicked and I finally got over the fact it was all new and it started to feel familiar. Nothing’s more comforting than familiarity.

I knew I was comfortable when I found myself singing everywhere I went.

This week’s my training week at the restaurant and I’m so excited! Will be great to meet everyone more than anything. Feels so productive to be working again.

This evening I’m off out for a curry with some old friends from school. My brother’s home from uni this weekend and I’m stealing as many hugs off him as possible before he leaves again. My mum’s still promised me a teeny tiny roast at lunch time. (Can’t ruin my curry but don’t wanna miss out on roast either. Especially when roast lunch is going to be a whole family occasion.)

My mum found out she’s finally got the job of her dreams this week. She’s wanted to be a LSA for as long as I can remember, but she’s had the worst luck. I was so happy when she told me that this time, the position is hers.

I’m more addicted to The Walking Dead than ever, so studying has kind of gone out of the window. In a way though, I felt like I was studying all week at the school. At the risk of sounding like a complete nerd, I couldn’t help thinking about the ways Music Therapy could be applied everywhere I went.

The butterflies only flutter occasionally now as if to remind me they’re still there, but they’re manageable. Peace has been restored. Everything is on the up.

Today is a gift, that’s why it’s called the present.

My mum’s ironing and singing the Strictly Come Dancing theme tune. My dad’s supposed to be fixing a hole in one of the bedroom ceilings. I’m studying. Yep, that’s right, I’ve finally made a start on the music therapy reading. I’m finding it SO interesting which is a really good sign I think. From the looks of it my sister is studying too. She’s got GCSEs this year. I do not envy her. My brother’s still away at uni. Goodness do I miss him.

My auntie’s popping by in a bit to say hello. I’m off to the cinema this afternoon with one of my best friends to see Bridget Jones’ Baby, which is supposed to be hilarious! I hope it lives up to expectations. I’ll let you know. AND roast dinner’s still on the cards for this evening. It is Sunday after all.

Trying to take things a day at a time because right now the thought of working a whole week in this school makes me so nervous. The pupils are lovely, the staff are amazing, it’s a great school, everything I’m going to be doing there is so relevant and I’ve so much to learn from them all. I just cannot shake the butterflies! I do hope they enjoyed meeting me. More than anything I worry that I’m actually rubbish at the job.

I’ve taken a weekend job at a restaurant in town too and I’m so excited about that. Having a little extra money coming in will be excellent and I’ve always enjoyed working in hospitality. Fingers crossed funding a masters will become a real possibility and I’ll have a lot of fun too.

Hopefully when I’m blogging this time next week the millions of butterflies I’m battling now will be a distant memory and I’ll have had the best of weeks. One day at a time. First things first, pick up my pen and get back to my books. Today’s a good day.

Inhale confidence, exhale doubt

It’s Sunday. Dave’s popped home again. We’re sat watching the football having had the yummiest and biggest of full Englishes this morning. The sun’s shining, but it is really chilly so I’m curled up on the sofa under a blanket. It’s October! Can you believe it? Time’s flying. Not going to lie, I’m excited about Christmas already.

It’s been a really good weekend. My mum cooked an amazing casserole on Friday evening. Friday night I was out with friends in town. Saturday morning was a lazy hazy one. I met one of my best friends for lunch once I got moving. They’ve just opened a brand new John Lewis store in the town centre and when we got there the wait for food everywhere was at least half an hour. In the end, we jumped in my car, retreated back out of town and headed to the pub instead. Turns out Hunter’s Chicken is great hangover food. We went all out and ordered three courses. It was pretty wonderful.

Lacking confidence going into this week. I’ve got my first meeting about the new job. Hoping all goes well. Just need to remember that it could be a complete disaster and all would still be alright in the end. Can only give it my best shot and that’s what I’m going to do. Not sure even singing will make these butterflies go away though. Be rooting for me!