The sun has set beautifully on 2015

So I’ve been AWOL for quite some time. 

Basically 2015 was a whirlwind, amazing year. Well a few initial hiccups then amazing for the majority before turning a bit shitty in December but I’ll get to that. 

First I want to tell you why I’ve been quiet for so long. I’ve covered off the first half of the year during previous posts on my #100daysofhappiness so I’ll just give a whistle stop tour of the second half. 

In June, myself and 4 of the best ones completed our new year challenge. We ran a half marathon. When I say ran, I actually ran. The entire way. I never ever thought I would be able to do it and with actual blood, sweat and tears through training we managed to achieve it, together. The dream team! 

To reward ourselves, we headed off to Ibiza shortly after. God I love that island. The weekend was full of laughs and memories that will last a lifetime. I want to share the places we visited but I’ll save that for another post! Sunning myself with my best girls, partying to Kisstory at Ocean Beach and experiencing how the other half live at Blue Marlin were definitely highlights for me! 

  

In August my parents celebrated 40 years of marriage. What an achievement! They are a shining example of true love, married at 18 and still having fun together 40 years later. My aim is to share the same kind of true love with someone myself one day. If I can have even 10 years experiencing the same depth of love they have for each other then I’ll be happy. I don’t want to settle for anything less. 

A reoccurring event in my annual calendar is V Festival. Those who have read my blog know about my love of music and I am so lucky to welcome some of the worlds best bands and artists to a festival on my doorstep every August. 

The following week I headed off to one of the most anticipated events of the year… My friend’s wedding in Rome. There were many things going through my mind prior to the trip as it was my first time in Italy, I’d never experienced a wedding abroad before and the thing that was making me most apprehensive was that these friends (and all the other people going) were people I had met through Mr Long Term, so he himself was going to be there too. I was nervous but I needn’t have been.  

Rome turned out to be everything I wanted and more. The city and food were amazing, the wedding itself was INCREDIBLE and I laughed until my face hurt every moment of every day there. Most coined phrase ‘when in Rome’ made almost any behaviour acceptable. I also met someone, who I’ve named Mr Nice Guy, you’ll hear more later. I’m so honoured to have been given the opportunity to celebrate with the happy couple and experience the love surrounding them, something that I will never forget. 

  

After four days at home, I jetted off to my happy place in Majorca where I spent two blissful weeks with my family. Sunbathing, eating, drinking, repeating. 
  

On my return to the UK I wasn’t met with the usual horrendous blues I have when I leave there. Many reasons for this included dates with Mr Nice Guy, one of my girls getting engaged, another two giving birth to their beautiful babies and one of my closest friends asking me to be her Maid of Honour next year. 

The final few months of the year sped by with lots of nights out, weekends with Mr Nice Guy and work being so busy heading into the festive season. 

So, Mr Nice Guy. Who is he? He is exactly that. He’s fun, good-looking, so kind, adores his family and is loyal beyond words. I made some great memories with him which made it all the more difficult when things didn’t work out for us just a few days before my birthday and Christmas. It was a bit of a shock as things seemed to be great during my visit to see him the weekend before.

I’m not really sure what happened. I questioned myself (and still do occasionally) wondering if it was something I did wrong. Did I say or do something wrong? What’s wrong with me? Why doesn’t he want it to work? Why is this happening to me again? Feeling so sad at a time when you are meant to be full of Christmas spirit is really hard. So I got drunk a lot with my friends. 

But now, I’ve focused on the fact that everyone crosses your path for a reason. His reason? To show me the sort of person I’d like to be with and that there are actually some decent single guys left out there. I’m really happy we met and that I had the opportunity to get to know him. 

What now for 2016? 

Well even though we are only 10 days in, it’s shaping up to be quite some year already. 5 weddings plus 3 hen weekends, a new baby in the summer (not mine, obvs), 2 wedding cakes to make and 10 days in Majorca in the Autumn. But I have also felt the need to make some big changes to my own life so have been focusing on self development. 

I’m going back to uni to complete my marketing diploma, I’ve never been more focused on saving money to achieve my goal of buying my own home, I’m going to learn Spanish and I am determined to shift the last 10lbs that has been lingering during 2015. Basically, I’ve chosen some things to achieve that I am solely responsible for so basically my happiness has no reliance on other people. If I don’t achieve these things, I can only blame myself. On the flip side, when I do achieve them, I’ll be able to feel immensely proud. 

I hope 2016 is the happiest yet for you all and that your hopes and dreams come true x

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A Recipe For Happiness!

It’s been a while since I updated you all on my #100daysofhappiness (the point of this blog!) so here we go….

Day 14 – Saw some old faces at work today from my secretarial days at Head Office.  Reminded me that when I want something enough, I can achieve it!!  Never give up!!

Day 15 – 3 bottles of prosecco with the lovely Anna!

Day 16 – So….. this happened.  Eeeeek!

GBBO

Day 17 – Sunday’s are for pampering!  Had a lovely lie in, did a hair mask, face mask and soaked myself in body cream!  Bliss!

Day 18 – A few things today.  Ibiza flights are BOOKED!!!  Someone said I looked like a Barbie (LOVE him!) AND I did a one handed spin at pole!

Day 19 – Good discovery today!  Tapas Tuesdays at All Bar One!  4 Tapas dishes and a bottle of wine for £20 xx

Day 20 – Got my annual charity quiz night invitation today! Love a quiz night! xx

Day 21 – Ran 5k at the gym tonight!  Love our little motivational Whatsapp group ‘Team Beefa!’ xx

Day 22 – Lovely, lovely evening with beaut friends xxx

Day 23 – Had such a fun night with fab friends xxx

Something potentially massive happened on Day 16.  I sent off my application for a place in the BBC’s Great British Bake Off this year.  Eeek!

I am under NO illusions that out of the thousands and thousands of applicants, I will get picked.  I know it’s highly unlikely and I have no expectations whatsoever.  I am not nearly good enough, and I don’t think that I have the experience they will be looking for.  But do you know what, I decided that I have absolutely nothing to lose so I just went for it!  Every year, people always tell me that I should go on it and I always say ‘oooh I don’t think I’m good enough’ or ‘I don’t think I could take the stress’.  All the excuses.  Well not anymore, at least I can now say I applied, regardless of what happens.

Ever since I can remember, I have loved baking. The stand out toy from my childhood was my A La Carte Kitchen, I baked cakes for family members birthdays, at the age of 12 I cooked a 3 course dinner for my parents anniversary – there are many memories.  My ‘speciality’ is baking and decorating cakes.  I’m not claiming to be amazing (I’m definitely not amazing), but I feel proud of the creations I’ve made to date.  I’ve had one 2 and a half hour cupcake decorating lesson and a 3 hour Macaron making lesson, the rest is completely self taught and just came from practice, practice and more practice!

I find baking very therapeutic – iTunes on shuffle, zoning out into my own little world and you can’t beat the smell of cakes or bread baking in the oven, it’s so homely.  Then finally, I love seeing people tucking into the tasty treats that I’ve created!  It’s a real sense of achievement and also a great honour when someone asks to you make them a cake for an occasion that is very special to them.

Here are a few examples of some of my bakes…

Baking

Everywhere I look lately, there is something or someone talking about happiness.  I’m not sure if it’s always been that way or whether I am just noticing it more now because of the blog and my #100daysofhappiness.  One of the things I saw was a little plaque entitled ‘Recipe for Happiness’ – I have most of the ingredients in my store cupboard, just one I need to nurture and perhaps once I have all the ingredients, every day will become 100% happy again!

Recipe For Happiness

Ingredients

1 Bag of Smiles
2 Cups of Sharing
2lbs of Positivity
1/2 Cup of Good Humour
1 Cup of Self Esteem
2 Spoonfuls of Simplicity
1 Dash of Goodwill
4 Drops of Easy Going
and
1 Packet of Life Loving!

So there you have it, a recipe for happiness, which hopefully will be the best thing I ever create!

Love Katie xx

PS – Coincidence that my mum and dad have just returned from a weekend in my other ‘happy place’ – Swanage, Dorset – with this little gift…

BakePlaque