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looking back on this year | 2017 in review

Us bloggers are fond of getting a bit reflective aren’t we?  I rather like it.  I like looking forwards into the future, and looking back on days or years gone by.

Just like every year, I’ve seen a few of these posts kicking about lately, so thought I’d join in with a 2017 roundup of my own.   Some travels, some standout days and some general life things – I’m going to pop everything in one place so I can look back on 2017 in summary when I’m 76.  A quick look back at my 2017 New Years resolutions tells me that I haven’t achieved all the vague goals I set myself (oh well, do we ever?), so it’s nice to remind myself that it has actually been a pretty busy year and I’ve done some pretty cool stuff.  Without further ado…

January

Wowee January feels like so long ago. Tasmin and I headed down to London for the Go Glam Gala – a fancy schmancy night in Westminster with lots of wonderful bloggers and wonderful cocktails.  I finally met people IRL who I’ve followed or spoken to online for years, and we made a trip of it and had a fun day in London the day after too.

I also first signed with an agency back in January and started test shooting, which marked the start of spending manyyyy days to and fro to Manchester, a city I now feel like I know pretty well.

February

February… what happened in February?  I can barely remember.  I went on a few dates, got to know different people, went to a couple of bloggy events, and generally had a pretty low key month (minus the odd manic day rushing here there and everywhere).

Group of girls in jacuzzi

March

March was a fun travel month!   I ended up going away twice in one week and feeling like way more of a jet setter than I actually am (and probably ever will be) because of a hiccup in the organisation process *cough* booking a flight for the wrong month *cough*.  Leaving the airport only to return 9 hours later felt cool though.  Trip no.1 took me to Rome with Roma Experience Tours – my 3 days were fun, tiring, fascinating and achy and I’d love to go back because I feel like I still have so much to see.  Even if I crammed an awful lot into 3 days as it was.

Female tourist photographer at Colosseum rome

Trip no.2 saw me in Lisbon – the beautiful, rainy, interesting, and oh so photogenic city.  I met and spent time with loads of people on this trip, from on the plane journey to in rooftop bars (where I met a lady who lived down the road from me – small world).

April

In April I jumped in a lake on a day that was definitely not jumping in lake weather.  Fun anyway.

May

One of my favourite memories of May was a day spent in the Lake District with my mum and brother.  Temperatures were predicted to be high (for England) so we made the most of it, loaded the car with snacks, deckchairs and books and just chilled the hell out on the lake shore for a day.  We headed to one of our long time favourite spots around Coniston rather than trying to find anywhere new – if it ain’t broke, right?

Around May time I also changed model agencies; it seems fairly common to chop and change agencies and the first agency just wasn’t right for me / I wasn’t right for them.  I’m with a different one now that I feel really comfortable with (and rock up unannounced on a Tuesday afternoon and do a brew round), so all is good.

June

Just like that, I finished my first year of uni what felt like 2 weeks after I started.  The thought that I’m now almost halfway through my degree quite frankly terrifies me.  I only had 2 exams this year (thank God the days of 23 GCSE exams in 2 months are over) and they weren’t overly stressful.  I actually left both of my 3 hour exams an hour early and immediately thought ‘I’m gonna regret this so much’ but when results day came round I was pleasantly surprised.

Post exams I headed straight down to Gatwick for a press trip to Austria with Thomson, which turned out to be THE most incredible trip.  We stayed in a stunning hotel (possibly my favourite ever – I mean it had a swimming pool in a lake) and witnessed some of the most beautiful views I’ve seen in my life.  I can’t recommend Austria enough as a summer holiday and would love to go back!  Just goes to show what can happen when you put yourself out there and send an email you doubt will ever be replied to.  Often it won’t, but sometimes it will and you’ll seriously reap the benefits.

A short week after landing from Austria I headed to Cologne for my first trip with my boyfriend.  We’re not together anymore, but the trip really was fab in the boiling hot sunshine.  Minus a stressful and confusing fiasco with Eurowings cancelling our flight and sending us to Dusseldorf with zero information but never mind that.

July

July saw me head to Bluedot, my first and only festival (so far).  I ended up going with my Dad at the last-minute and our science geek selves both really enjoyed it.  Bumped into my gal pal Erin too which was a bonus!

I do love a last-minute trip and managed to squeeze a few in this year, one being 3 days in Pembrokeshire in July.  Thanks to the ever reliable British weather it turned out to be more of a ‘cosy by the fire‘ trip than the ‘bikini on the beach’ kind, but my mum and I had a fab time nonetheless.

Followed shortly by another last minute mini trip, this time to Leeds.  I’ve really liked Leeds in the short time I’ve spent there and it’s a city I’d love to get to know better.  Just seems so much prettier than Manchester (soz Manc).

August

Fitness-wise August was my ‘best’ month, as I pushed myself super hard with a workout programme over summer and was the strongest I’ve ever been.  Tracking macros and following a routine wasn’t something I could ever sustain full time but I’m glad I did it and might do so again next year.  This wasn’t a ‘get fit for summer’ kind of thing – I just had more time on my hands with the lack of uni work so thought I’d give it a go.

My fam and I headed to Tenerife for 10 days where we chilled out and did absolutely nothing and it was glorious.

At some point in August (I didn’t even know the day to count down to) I received my first year of uni results, and was a very happy gal that day.  98% in the maths exam I thought I’d done worse in so that was a pleasant surprise!

September

Croatia had been on my ‘must visit’ list for years and in September I finally had the chance to see it for myself, and spent 5 days in the capital, Zagreb.  This was my third time working with Monarch Airlines who sadly went under a couple of weeks later; it was a real shame to see them go.  Although I was glad it didn’t happen 2 weeks earlier since I was promoting Monarch being the ‘only airline flying from Manchester to Zagreb’ and would’ve been stuck.  Whilst in Zagreb I finally met the very lovely Antonia – 2017 has been a good year for meeting online pals IRL!  This was my 5th time solo abroad and safe to say the solo travel bug has bitten me hard.  Definitely more on the cards for 2018.

Another occasion where my life felt more glamourous than it actually is: going straight from the airport to the Northern Blog Awards at the v fancy Principal Hotel.  I didn’t for one second expect to win, especially not in the Instagram category considering how many fantastic accounts were in there, so you can imagine my surprise when my name was called.  Thanks again to everyone who voted for me!  Holly did an amazing job organising the awards, and I loved wearing a red carpet dress, swishing around all night, meeting lots of lovely people and generally having a bloody good time.

October

The highlight of October was definitely my trip to Milan with Tasmin – I think we’re gonna make Autumn trips an annual thing now!  These few days could be summarized as laughs, carbs, lots of public transport and millions of photos.  If I *had* to choose, it’d be one of my favourite trips of the year.

After Milan, second year of uni hit me like a ton of bricks, so that was fun.  Both the workload and the difficulty massively increased and it took a while to get used to.  I still don’t feel like I’ve figured out the best way to approach it but oh well, I’ll try my best.

November

I turned 20 (officially old) and passed my driving test.  I started learning at the end of July, but I’m glad I had quite a few lessons and didn’t book my test before I was ready.  Passed first time with only 2 faults!  I’d failed almost every mock test and been stressed during them, but my actual test was surprisingly chilled and smooth with no hiccups.  Thank god I never have to do it again though.

Straight after my driving test (literally – did my test with my suitcase in the boot) I headed down to Gloucestershire for a week of shooting the SS18 campaign with Christy Home.  This modelling/blogging collab came about after meeting the Christy team at the Northern Blog Awards, and the whole shoot was such a cool experience to be a part of.  I’ll be sharing more when the campaign launches next spring, so keep your eyes peeled for some BTS next February or so.

Like I said for October, second year of uni hit me like a ton of bricks and not gonna lie, November involved a few meltdowns about uni because I just. couldn’t. do. it.  Distance learning has many perks but one of the downsides is how alone you feel when you’re at home struggling with nobody to help.  My tutor helped me over the phone as much as she could, but (especially with more practical modules) it’s just not the same as having somebody there with you to show you where you’re going wrong.  I suspect many similar meltdowns will occur over the next couple of years but oh well, I’ll manage somehow or other.

December

December’s been a busy month with blog collabs, fittings jobs, shoots and seeing friends, but I’m winding down now with no more deadlines or anything until January (I don’t think… hope).  Just gonna focus on getting stuff done at home and having fun with friends and family from now!

lily kate x

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2 Comments

  • Reply
    Hannah
    20th December 2017 at 8:21 am

    What a fantastic year you’ve had! You inspire me to travel more, work harder and say yes to more opportunities 🙂

    Hannah x

    • Reply
      lily kate
      20th December 2017 at 8:44 am

      It has been a good one! I mean there have been rubbish bits too but overall 2017 has been good to me 🙂
      That makes me so happy, mission accomplished with this blog! Say yes to as many things as possible 😀

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