Decorating!

This weekend, Ben and I spent a lot of time preparing my parents’ house for Christmas. Wandering around Fenwick, Paperchase and Wilko, we managed to pick up a gorgeous range of baubles. From bargain pieces to slightly more expensive gems, I was thrilled with everything we picked up.

Given that Christmas is my favourite holiday, and given that it’s less than 20 days away, today I thought I’d share a few pictures that we took over the weekend.

And yes… I am wearing a dragon onesie.

20 years old

On the 25th November, I celebrated my 20th birthday. I took some time off work and spend Thursday evening – Tuesday morning in the company of my significant other. It was a complete delight.

On Thursday evening, Ben and I tucked into a nice curry from a local Indian with my parents, before I opened my gifts from them. I was lucky enough to receive a beautiful planner from Kikki.K and a jacket from asos.com, as well as a huge stuffed dog – I love them all dearly.

Ben and I stayed up until midnight watching Frozen, and when the clock struck 12 I opened my presents from the man himself. I got a variety of gifts from him, all of which I love. I was a particular fan of some Disney postcards that he’d bought me, with stills from the films as well as some of the drawings pre-final edit. It was amazing to see the work that had gone into the films, and also the skill of the artists that work on them. This went along nicely with the Disney book he bought me as well.

Among other presents, Ben had also bought me Disney Pictopia (which I thoroughly recommend if you love Disney!) and the most adorable little toy armadillo.

On Friday morning, Ben and I had pain au chocolat and spent the majority of our time wrapping Christmas gifts for friends and family. Just before midday, my friend Amy quickly popped over for a gift, and then Ben and I headed to Nando’s for a rather large (but very delicious) lunch!

In the evening, we headed back to Ben’s and watched Papertowns, which he’d bought me on DVD for my birthday, while eating ‘party food’, and many episodes of Skins, a TV show that I’ve seen at least twice through but love lots.

On Saturday evening, Ben had arranged a surprise meet-up with some friends of mine, who I wish I could see more regularly. It was an awesome surprise that ended up with us spending some time at a pub before moving on to Pizza Hut. Delicious!

Sunday was definitely the busiest day of the entire weekend. We picked my sister and her boyfriend up from the station and drove to my grandparents house. My Nan and Grandad had arranged for us all (mum, dad, Kat, Mat, Ben and I) to go out for a roast lunch at a local pub, before heading back to their’s for a game of Rummikub. I love spending time with my family, and I think every involved had a pretty good day. Nan even surprised me with a birthday cake!

In the evening, we returned to Ben’s where we watched Me Before You, another DVD that Ben had bought me and one that I have wanted to watch for ages. The book was beautiful and I was so pleased that the film lived up to expectations. And yes, I did cry.

Originally I had planned to spend Monday chilling and relaxing in time to return to work, but when it came down to it, Ben and I decided to pop to Bluewater and do some shopping. I went into the Kikki.K store and Paperchase and picked up some lovely new stationery bits, and also bought myself a new rucksack from Topshop which is definitely one of my favourite things and something I shall inevitably use for a long time.

We had a lovely lunch at Gourmet Burger Kitchen which I have recently become a fan of – particularly the skinny fries!

All in all, my birthday weekend was fantastic.

How time flies…

I cannot believe it’s been three months since I wrote this post in celebration of Ben and I being together for six months. It’s crazy that it’s been nine months since we became official partners in crime.
These past three months have been pretty tough. Ben’s been back at home in Aylesbury, as he’s been on summer holidays from uni (thank goodness he’s back next weekend!) and I’ve been getting by in Kent. I’ve spent lots of weekends visiting him which has been really fortunate – if a little tiring – for me. I love spending time with Ben, it is my favourite thing to do.
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1. We went on our first mini holiday together at the start of August with a couple of our friends and their son. It was beyond delightful and I think we all had a pretty great time. It was my first time properly camping and I didn’t think I was going to enjoy it nearly as much as I did. The weather was beautiful, the vibe was super chill and honestly I wish I could have getaways like that every weekend. Positive days with positive people are the best thing for me. I got a little way too sunburnt and was in pain for several days afterwards, but it was so worth it. Note to self: take Ben’s advice and wear more suncream next time.
2. Over the bank holiday weekend, I was up in Aylesbury enjoying a lovely break from work with Ben’s family. My clear highlight was a beautiful day picnic-ing at Ashridge Monument. The weather was lovely, the food was fantastic and the company was, always, better than I could ever have hoped for.
3. Ben and I now have matching necklaces. They’re so beautiful and we’re so happy with them. His is black and silver and mine is a sort of rose gold colour and silver, and they’re engraved with the words “I will always be with you”. I wear it every single day and love it so much.
 Benjamin Warner, you are the love of my life and the light in my darkest days. I love you more than you could ever imagine, my hero.

Six months

soulmate
ˈsəʊlmeɪt/
noun
  1. a person ideally suited to another as a close friend or romantic partner.


Ben and I have been together for six months today. Six whole months of this beautiful blossoming relationship we’ve got going on. I’m so lucky to have him. He has supported me through everything and has made me feel beautiful and loved every single day. Never have I ever felt as happy and whole as I do right now, and that’s all thanks to him.

Benjamin, you make my bad days better and the good ones incredible and I love you more than you will ever know.
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54 holes later…

Last week, I was lucky enough to be able to take some time off work and spend it with my wonderful better half.  As it was his last week in Kent before the summer we decided that, as well as packing all his belongings and cleaning his flat, we’d go out for a couple of day trips.  On Thursday, we jumped into my car and headed off to the Hastings. Wikipedia describes Hastings like this:

Hastings /ˈhstɪŋz/ is a historic town and borough in the county of East Sussex, within the historic county of Sussex, on the south coast of England. The town is located 24 mi (39 km) east of the county town of Lewes and 53 mi (85 km) south east of London, and has an estimated population of 90,254,[2] which makes it the 66th largest settlement in the United Kingdom.[3]Historically, Hastings can claim fame from the Battle of Hastings, and later because it became one of the medieval Cinque Ports. Hastings was, for centuries, an important fishing port; although nowadays less important, it still has the largest beach-based fishing fleet in Europe. The town became a popular spot for ‘taking the waters’ (therapeutic bathing in the sea) in the 1760s, and then, with the coming of the railway, a seaside resort.

Hastings is a really wonderful place. It’s pretty lively, a lot livelier than I ever remember it being from when I was younger, but maybe that’s just because I didn’t have my parents telling me what to do this time. 

There’s quite a lot to do and see in Hastings. It’s 1066 town so it’s got quite a lot of historical significance. You can visit the castle and there’s also an aquarium and something called “Smuggler’s Adventures” which I went to when I was younger and remember being quite cool. 

Ben and I decided to have ourselves a little mini golf tournament this time instead of visiting anything in particular. It was brilliant from start to finish. 54 holes later and it was clear to us both that Ben definitely has a golfing edge over me. Nonetheless, it was lovely getting out and doing something completely different that we wouldn’t normally do. And for three different courses, it actually wasn’t too expensive either! 

We also headed to the amusement arcades on the pier, to waste some loose change on those annoying crane things that no one ever wins from. Regardless of the lack of prizes, it was probably one of the most enjoyable days I’d had in a while. 

Spending time with Ben is so important to me, and I’ve been fortunate enough to spend significant lengths of time with him since he came back to Kent in January after Christmas. We’ve been together pretty much every weekend and it’s been wonderful, but it’s always nice to visit somewhere new and do something different.

Our afternoon in Hastings was awesome and I’m definitely looking forward to going back some day (and hopefully beating Ben at mini golf this time!). 

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What we’ve been watching: Happy Valley

TITLE: Happy ValleyRELEASE: 2014-RATED: 15NUMBER OF SERIES: 2 (to date)NUMBER OF EPISODES: 12 (to date)CREATOR: Sally WainwrightMY RATING: 4.5/5BEN’S RATING: 4.5/5  DESCRIPTION:Sarah Lancashire stars as Catherine Cawood, a police sergeant in a small town in Yorkshire where drunkards, drug addicts and teenage pregnancies are a way of life. Her world is turned upside down when the man she believes is responsible for her daughter’s death – Tommy Lee Royce – is released from prison. She is convinced Tommy is dangerous and it’s only a matter of time before he hurts someone else…  NOTABLE QUOTES:“I’m Catherine, by the way. I’m forty-seven, I’m divorced, I live with my sister – who’s a recovering heroin addict – I have two grown up children. One dead and one who doesn’t speak to me. And a grandson.” “I understand, you get frustrated, but we have to find better ways of dealing with it.” “How would you like to make half a million pounds?”

 MY THOUGHTS:We watched the entire first two series of Happy Valley while at Ben’s house in Aylesbury, and honestly I’m so glad that we did.  This series is a BAFTA winner, and I can see why. It’s one of the only series I’ve been truly gripped on from start to finish – the acting in it is absolutely amazing and the plot line is amazing, particularly in the first series. This isn’t just ‘another TV crime drama’, it’s so much more than that.  The second series was just as good as the first for the most part, although I was a little disappointed with the ending. I think me and Ben both agreed that we were a little dissatisfied with the ending, particularly as the series had been so good until that point. I suspect it’s been left that way to make room for series three. When the third series does eventually come out, I’m almost 100% certain that Ben and I will be settling down to watch it.   BEN’S THOUGHTS:So, Happy Valley was suggested to Beverley and myself by my dad, during her week in Aylesbury. From the first two episodes, we were hooked, taking every possible opportunity to watch it. Averaging two episodes a night, we finished the two series before Beverley had to return home!  Series one: absolutely incredible! The build up of the characters and plot was insane. There were so many plot twists and unexpected moments which never failed to surprise us and give us a thrill. 
Series two: still an incredible show! Also had a great build up and was still very gripping. All-in-all, this show was absolutely superb. However, I wasn’t so sure about the ending to series two. I sort of wish it had had an alternative ending, but I still thoroughly enjoyed it!   instagram | twitter | goodreads

The Highlights: March 2016

Much like February did, March has flown by. I’m so excited to finally be getting away from the winter wardrobe and towards summer. Sunny days make me happy. 
Some of the highlights:– A spontaneous night at Bluewater with Ben– Wearing sunglasses for the first time in 2016– Reaching and exceeding three months with Ben- Taking a week off of work to chill in Aylesbury with my wonderful better half- Leaving work in daylight for the first time this year- Reading one of the most beautiful books ever written- Celebrating Ben’s birthday (and finally getting to give him his presents after waiting so long)From my Instagram:

 

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9/9



With the looming end to what has been one of the best weeks of my life, I woke this morning feeling quite sad.

This was my first trip to Aylesbury, and definitely won’t be my last. I’ve created lots of new memories with my wonderful boyfriend, and I’m feeling quite reflective as I write this while sitting alone in my own bedroom on my own bed.  My relationship with Ben is forever evolving. In such a short space of time we’ve been through so much together and I find new things out about him every single day. He’s incredible. I’m delighted to have met someone who brings such positivity to my world. I couldn’t ask for a better partner.

To round off the week, Ben wanted to say a few words so here they are: “The journey to Ashford on Good Friday was a bit manic and changed (due to rail-works), however it was worth it, because I got to see Beverley at the end of it! She waited for me at the station, and then we spent the night in Canterbury, which was mega cute!  

“The next week was spent in Aylesbury, and I honestly couldn’t have asked for a better week surrounding my birthday, spending the most-part of nine days with my gorgeous better half, and getting daily cuddles and kisses was just asdfghjkl!  

“All in all I just want to say a huge, huge thank you to Beverley; for my amazingly thoughtful and wonderful presents, for being a genuinely, and naturally awesome human being, and for being a partner I could never have dreamed of having! Thank you, and I love you, Beverley – my best friend, and my world!” heart emotico

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8/9

 Today, we spent the morning chilling at Ben’s house before heading out to the park with Ben’s aunty and cousins after lunch.  Ben and I also went for a wander into town, so that he could spend some of the birthday money he had received from friends and family. The walk to town was a bit of a trek, but it was good to have a browse round the shops.  In the evening, we headed out to Da Vinci, an Italian restaurant, with two of Ben’s friends, Sam and Oriana. It was a perfect way to round off a perfect week. instagram | twitter | goodreads

7/9

 Today was Ben’s birthday!  I gave him his presents this morning. I’ve been waiting for forever to give them to him and I think he was pretty pleased so I’m a happy bunny.  We watched Toy Story 3 this morning as well. I’d forgotten how much I love that film We headed out to a local cafe for some lunch which was nice. I had a cheese and ham toastie and some chips.  This afternoon, some of Ben’s grandparents came over for a quick drink and to wish him a happy birthday, after which we headed out to Prezzo for a birthday meal before returning home for an evening watching Happy Valley – just finished series 2, so glad I was introduced to this series and had time to finish it before the end of my week in Aylesbury. Looking forward to tomorrow and everything it has in store. instagram | twitter | goodreads

5/9

 Ben and I took a trip into Milton Keynes today to do a bit of shopping. Our little haul consisted of five new Disney films, several new notebooks and a couple of new pens from Waterstones and Paperchase and a stuffed toy Lotso from Toy Story 3. We stopped for lunch at Pret, and I had a delicious chipotle chicken toastie, chocolate mousse and a mango/passion fruit smoothie.  This evening, we spent a long time making lists. Things we want to do together, watch together, see together. It’s all very exciting. We’ve also now started series 2 of Happy Valley which we’re going to have finished by the end of the week.
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