September Favourites 2016...

I can't believe tomorrow is the start of October, well and truly an Autumnal month and personally, my favourite month. Although, I could do with the weather getting that little bit colder so I can bring out my jumpers, coats and scarves that make the crisp weather seem lovely and cosy. Anyway, enough about October, first I need to end September by sharing my favourites from the past month!

Beauty

NYX stay matte but not flat powder foundation- I have only worn a liquid foundation once this past month, maybe even past two months, and that's because it feels more heavy and uncomfortable on my skin and hasn't actually made that much difference to the overall look apart from melt away when I find myself getting hot. So rather than just using a tinted moisturiser or concealer and powder, I thought I'd try a powder foundation. To me this didn't seem like the best idea for a base but the NYX stay matte but not flat foundation has been a really lovely product. It's easy to apply and gives a light coverage but when working with concealer, helps to even out skin tone and cover any blemishes, exactly what I needed, and yet it doesn't feel heavy and thick on my face, it also lasts longer! This obviously means that it isn't the highest coverage but despite having issues with my skin, it's been my go to product this month and has done exactly what I needed it to do.
NYX Liquid Suede- If you missed my review on this product, then you can click here to have a read of that. If you have read it, you will know just how incredible this product is! Without repeating too much from my review; it lasts a very long time, whether you have a few drinks or a three course meal, it applies easily, it doesn't feel drying and it looks amazing when it's on. Highly recommend trying this product out!

Homeware

Polaroid Photos- Moving away has been a challenge as you may have read about in my previous post (here) but having cute polaroid style photos of my family and friends has helped make my room feel more homely and reminded me of some lovely moments we've shared.
Fairylights- A great accompaniment to polaroid photos and any room in general really. Fairylights have definitely helped make my room feel more homely and cosy so if you've moved out and don't yet have any fairylights, I highly recommend getting your hands on some- preferably battery powered, many uni rooms don't actually allow the other kind!
Primark Dreams Bedding- I adore this bedding and the way it brightens up the room with it's array of colours and gorgeous design. It's also soft so a nice comfortable place to get some zzzs.
Primark soft cushion- aka the softest cushion I've ever felt! My coral cushion not only feels amazing to touch but also looks cute with the bedding and feels really comfortable to sit or lie against which, in my eyes, is a necessity.
Mini fridge- My mini fridge has proven very useful as I've had extra fridge space when things won't fit into the main kitchen fridge and I've been able to keep snacks in my room for when I get a bit peckish, as well as some milk so that I can get my breakfast in my room as I'm getting ready for the day which, ultimately saves me a bit of time!

Other

Shawn Mendes Illuminate- You must all know by now just how much I adore Shawn Mendes! He is one incredibly talented musician and creates some beautiful songs! This month, he dropped his second album and I have been listening to it so often simply because I can't get enough of his voice. My absolute favourite from the new album is Hold On which I think I would love at any time but have felt a stronger connection with this past week as it really relates to my current situation and emotions. I'm also a big fan of Patience and of course, Treat You Better but honestly any song he releases I love!

That concludes everything I have been loving throughout September. Let me know what you have been loving? Thank you for reading this post, if you enjoyed it and want to see more from then you can follow my social media links in the top right hand corner, to see when I next upload.

Love, Steph x
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Starting University: My Experience

My first uni update post is not really in the direction I expected it to go. I thought it would be a post about the small challenges and the bundles of fun I've been having but unfortunately, it isn't the case. It's very early doors as it's Monday as I write this and I moved in on Saturday, but I wanted to upload this now as a form of reflection on the first few days, to be honest with you about how challenging it can be for some people and to allow myself to reflect on the post in the future and hopefully realise just how different I feel about the situation.

I moved in Saturday morning and spent the day unpacking and with my family, including going out for a lovely meal. The accommodation I'm in is really lovely, it appears to be of a high standard and is in a good location. On top of that, so far, I've been really happy with my flatmates as they've all been lovely when I've seen them. Plus, as we're all girls so, so far, it's been a lot tidier than I expected.

Saturday night we went out as a flat plus one other person, which I hadn't particularly looked forward to and almost didn't go as clubbing is not my sort of scene. However, I'm glad I tried it the first night so I had less time to overthink and worry about it and got to go when I didn't have an early start the next day. As it was my first time clubbing, I didn't hate it as much as I thought I would but it did confirm that a quiet night in or an evening meal and cocktails is more for me and it's not something I'd really want to do again.

I briefly met and spoke to a few of my flatmates when my parents were here and a little after but the whole move seemed to hit me that evening and rather embarrassingly (especially as I hate to cry in front of other people, so rarely ever do it!), I burst into tears right after introducing myself to one of the girls- excellent first impression! The three of them were lovely though and for the rest of the evening kept asking if I was okay and encouraged me to go out with them to take my mind away from it all.

I wish I could say that that was the end of the crying. Unfortunately not... after getting home and to sleep okay, I felt very lost and overwhelmed the following morning and spent a good 45 minutes on the phone to my family, in tears the whole time and then found myself crying on and off throughout the day including when I spoke to them for a similar length of time that night as well. I haven't felt that way for a long time and have never spent so much time crying but I think it just hit me and felt like a whole new world, where I couldn't just walk downstairs or across the hall and see my family. The actual group of people and accommodation, couldn't have been any better; I just didn't handle the distance from home very well and I think felt very overwhelmed by all the changes. In turn. this made me question a lot of things about the university as well as the course, before even starting!

Fortunately, today was a lot better and although I didn't feel 100% myself, I had a much better day and liked knowing a bit more about my course as well as meeting my course mates. At first, I was incredibly nervous but other than the odd 'hi' to a few people, the first people I introduced myself to and spoke to were the people I spent the rest of the day with and could see a friendship in. It made the day a lot easier, having a few people to move around with and talk to and definitely made the uni situation seem a lot more positive.

I'm now editing this two days later and whilst the feelings are still very similar, I am more confident in my choice of the uni and the course, just still unsure about my living situation so need to see how things go and make a decision from there as to whether I stay for the year, move back home and commute or stay here in the week and go home at weekends. I guess I'll have to just do some research and work out which option is going to be best for me. Despite the fact that it would be quite embarrassing and complicated to kind of 'give up' on uni accommodation and move back home, if I'm going to spend the rest of the year or even the rest of the month feeling the same way, then it really isn't worth it.

University is definitely not an easy adjustment and if you aren't really into going out drinking and clubbing, it can seem as though you're isolating yourself. I know I've felt that way as I haven't come across many people who feel similar to me that are staying in hauls. I'm sure that I'll find people down the line who want to do similar things to me and my flatmates always seem really friendly with me whether or not I go out, it's just going to take some time to settle down and get used to this whole new life.

Upon reflection and after things people have said to me, I do think the feelings of uncertainty and sadness are heightened by recent events as I have spent a lot of time with family over the past few months, especially my mum which I've been with constantly, both supporting each other. So to go from that closeness, to not seeing each other (and this applies to the rest of my family as well), in the flesh for a prolonged period of time, it does feel very difficult and lonely, even if you have other lovely people around you... it just isn't the same. On top of that, I'm the kind of person that keeps things to themselves a lot, particularly when things are challenging so it does mean I have a tendency to distance myself from people, which isn't great in this situation.

All in all, I don't think my experience is the most common of starts at university or if it is, it's not one I really hear much about so I wanted to talk about it as a form of self therapy, a bit of reassurance for anyone feeling similar that maybe haven't found many other people that share the feelings and to be able to reflect on the post in the future and see how things develop. I also filmed a little bit of my moving day so provided there is enough footage, I'll be uploading that vlog next week, so you can subscribe to my channel here to be notified when I upload.

Let me know what you're uni experience is/was like as I'd love to know if anyone has experienced similar situations and has any tips, or would love to hear about other experiences as well. Thank you for reading this post, I hope you enjoyed it. If you did and want to see more from me, you can follow my social media links in the top right hand corner to see when I next upload.

Love, Steph x
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Top Ten: Current Music Favourites

I ended the last blog post stating that I was ready to get back into blogging and ready to start producing regular content again and then proceeded to miss a post on Tuesday. For that, I apologise, I had full intention to get back to two posts a week but did not take into account the manic week that lay ahead full of preparing and packing for university, which wouldn't be a problem apart from the fact that I was also out of pre-written posts. Nevertheless, here are my top ten current music favourites. Unless there is a specific reason for my love of the song, I will list them to avoid repeating myself as a lot of the time, the reasons I enjoy songs are very similar to one another.


  1. Lost Boy by Ruth B- This song is beautiful vocally, lyrically and musically... it's just stunning and I never tire of hearing it.
  2. Rise by Katy Perry
  3. Girls Talk Boys by 5SOS
  4. Treat You Better by Shawn Mendes
  5. Jinx by DNCE- DNCE are killing it at the moment and have some really great tunes but Jinx is my favourite of theirs and has been for a while.
  6. Side by side by Ariana Grande ft. Nicki Minaj- I love how fun and upbeat this song is, it just makes me want to dance along.
  7. Into You by Ariana Grande
  8. Closer by Chainsmokers ft. Halsey
  9. Cold Water by Hobbie Stuart- The original song is brilliant but Hobbie's version is incredible, especially as the version is an a capella version I believe.
  10. Count On Me by Bruno Mars- Definitely not a new song but I've really been enjoying this the past couple of months as it's a really sweet song due to it's tune as well as its lyrics.

There are a number of other songs I've been enjoying recently, both older and newer songs, some of which I featured in my August Favourites post hence why they aren't in this post, so if you want to see the ones mentioned there, you can read the post here. That completes my short but sweet post today, stay tuned for uni related posts and videos in the next couple of weeks, where I'll be uploading as regularly as possible but have no idea what sort of spare time I'm going to have. Thank you for reading this post, if you enjoyed it and want to see more from me, you can follow my social media links in the top right hand corner of my blog to see when I next upload.

Love, Steph x
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Grandma

Boy is this going to be a difficult post to write... I am not the most open of people, yes sometimes I can be open and honest, perhaps a little too much, but when it comes to the more personal, deep, difficult things, I'm a fairly closed book. I've not been very active on my blog or social media recently or have been quite inconsistent with uploads, which I'm sorry about. Today I thought I owed you an explanation for my absence, not as a form of seeking sympathy or attention or anything like that, simply because this blog is where I share my thoughts and experiences through my life and I also feel like I owe people an explanation so you know that I didn't just lose interest in my blog.

The past year or so has been filled with challenging moments and it's fair share of bad news but my family and I have battled through, keeping our spirits high and remaining strong both individually and as a unit. Last Spring my beautiful, courageous grandma went through two operations to remove cancer. Unfortunately cancer returned elsewhere and was incurable. In a relative short space of time, things deteriorated. She managed to enjoy her birthday with all of our family, but the evening didn't go so well and after a fall, she ended up in hospital. Thankfully, my uncle had stopped with her that night so was able to help her and call the ambulance- who knows what would have happened had she been alone. After a couple of weeks in hospital, she made it home a couple of days before results day, which she'd wanted to be there for. Results day was one moment in particular that I wish had gone differently on my part, as I was a bit disappointed with some of my grades and by the time I got to my grandma's flat, the tears had formed in my eyes and had been threatening to spill over for a substantial period of time. Once I walked in the flat, I just broke down and sobbed, not wanting to go in and tell my grandma. After comfort from my mum, I eventually went in to tell her, tears still streaming down my face, which I really wish hadn't been the case, as I hate to think that that was one of the last times she saw my face. Grandma was curious to know why I was upset with my grades and talked to me a bit about them. The last thing she properly said to me was how she was 'always, always proud of her [me]' which really sums my grandma up and is something that will stick with me for the rest of my life, I'm sure. She sadly passed away in the early hours of Sunday morning (21st) with a large portion of her family around her. After a few days really struggling, not really being herself, barely able to talk, all we really wanted was for her suffering to stop. Yes we wanted her with us but none of us wanted her to go on like that and in a weird way, we were glad it happened when it did so that her suffering and pain didn't drag on for days and weeks when she had to fight just to breathe. In that moment, it wasn't her fighting, it was her body and we just willed for the pain to stop and for her to be reunited with my grandad.

It makes me happy to know that the two of them are back together and I know they will go on in our hearts, lives and spirits, but it doesn't make it any easier, knowing you'll never get to visit her. She always welcomed people with open arms, filled their tummies and showered them with love. Going from seeing someone several times a week, at some points, pretty much daily, to never seeing them again, is a lot to take in and will take a lot of time to comprehend. The knowledge that she won't ever see me get my degree or get married or have children, if I do those things, is horrible but I know she'll always experience them with us, just not physically. There are so many moments when I think about popping to see her on my way somewhere or finding something in the shop that she'd been after and every time, it breaks my heart a little more knowing it's no longer relevant or possible.

Death and grief is a part of life that we all have to deal with at some point or another and I know she lived a long, happy life but it doesn't necessarily make things easier. It does consume you. Yes you can go on living your life, but that loss is still there and does effect the way you view things and experiences and only time will heal that.

As I mentioned, I like to keep stuff to myself a lot but my best friend in particular, has been great at offering her support but understanding that I don't really want to talk about things, so instead she's there if I need company and she's been there for me to get away and relax with her for a bit but has also given me space when needed.

So that is why I haven't been as active or consistent, because for a while circumstances have meant I haven't been home a great deal and then when I have been home, I haven't been in the best mindset to come up with original blog and YouTube ideas, to have normal conversations with people online, to sit and film a video or sit and write a blog post. Instead, that time (when not preparing for uni and the other things going on) has been spent with family and trying to do things that make me feel content. Whilst I enjoy writing, I haven't had the energy, motivation or mindset to create blog posts I'm proud of.

Things won't improve overnight, in fact, they'll probably take a while, but for now, I'm ready to get back on the blogging wagon and hopefully start producing regular content to be proud of both here and on my YouTube channel. If I do disappear at times, it's probably a similar reason to those listed above as difficult times can come in waves but for now, I hope you enjoy reading and watching my content. Thank you for bearing with me and for the support.

Love, Steph x
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Boutique Of Molly Review: 'Milan'

You'll probably realise by now how much I love Boutique Of Molly and enjoy reviewing their products for you, hence why I have another BOM review today. The online store recently released a range of handbags and purses which you can view here. Upon their release, I decided to purchase the Milan bag for myself; I can hear my grandma telling me that I have enough bags and don't need another one but sorry grandma, you'd do the same, and I know I have a lot less bags than you do anyway ;).

'Milan' £35 

I think the bag looks a lot more expensive than it was, particularly due to the quilted pattern and the gold design around the twist lock. The black and gold combination makes the bag look effortlessly gorgeous and goes well with any outfit. I also find the quilted design a lovely style as we head into Autumn. 

It has several side pockets both on the interior and exterior of the bag, which allows for plenty of room to separate items within the bag whilst storing plenty for your day. I also love the versatility of the straps as the length can be adjusted to make it sit nicely on your arm, over your shoulder or in your hands. 

It's an ideal size for everyday purposes but due to it's sleek, sophisticated design, would also make a nice evening accessory. I also love the burgundy faux leather on the interior. The faux leather material could quite easily be real leather based on the appearance and scent which both make the bag a lovely product. 

This is my first review of a handbag, or any accessory for that matter so it's kind of short but sweet. Nevertheless, I hope you enjoyed it and found it useful. Hopefully over time, these reviews will improve. I have a what's in my bag video going up tomorrow featuring this bag so you can have a proper nosey inside should you wish to. To see that as it's uploaded, you can subscribe here. BOM also have a similar bag to this, which is slightly smaller and is in a burgundy shade, which I highly recommend checking out or alternatively, they have a few other, gorgeous bags on the site that you may prefer, as well as a purse.

Thank you for reading this post, I hope you enjoyed it. If you want to see more from me, you can follow my social media links in the top right hand corner to see when I next upload. 

Love, Steph x
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Exploring London

If you missed yesterdays post, you can give it a read here to see what I got up to in the first half of the week, but as I previously mentioned; it was a very full on week. All nice things but still full on. After returning from the spa trip, I had to unpack and repack for two days/one night in London the following morning.

Getting the train down to London wasn't too much hassle and we arrived before lunch, ready to enjoy the trip. We started in Nandos (how cultured!) and had a lovely meal; it was actually my first trip to Nandos so I'd definitely consider going back. After enjoying the meal, we decided to walk to our hotel in Hyde Park (Grand Park Hotel) but my brother thought it was a good idea to take us on a diversion towards the center so that we could see some sites on the way... we did not end up seeing any noteworthy sites but did add 2 miles to our journey before progressing at all. What should have been 2.9 miles was 4.9 miles (with mini suitcases/bags!). Nevertheless, we reached the hotel, just about in one piece, which was lovely. It was a little far out from things but the hotel itself was very pleasant. Once we'd wound down a bit with a drink and a change of clothes. We got a taxi to Piccadilly Circus where 'Comedy About A Bank Robbery' was and then walked to Leicester Square whilst deciding where to eat. We found a nice Italian to sit outside and eat at, who did lovely pasta dishes, I had my trusty Arrabbiata (spicy tomato dish), which is one of my favourite meals. Once finished, the group split and three went to 'A Comedy About A Bank Robbery' who all seemed to really enjoy it, and mum and I went to see 'Mamma Mia' in Covent Garden. Prior to going, I hadn't been particularly excited to see it as I didn't think I was that bothered about the theatre, but it was amazing! It made me giggle and was just generally a very jolly performance that can't help but put a smile on your face. The actors performed wonderfully- singing, dancing, acting... the lot. It's definitely made me want to see a couple more shows. To finish the evening, we met back in TGIFridays for a drink. If you're over 18 and have a TGIFridays near you, I highly recommend going and trying the 'Honey Kist' cocktail. It's very sweet so it's good as an alternative to a pudding but as sweet as it sounds, it isn't overpoweringly sweet and one glass isn't too sickly. It's made of Jack Daniels Honey, Baileys, White Cacao, Ice Cream and Toffee Popcorn. I believe it's still available although not all seem to have it on the menu as it's part of new Jack Daniels range where three have been introduced but I believe only one will stay depending on which sells best. Even my mum, who doesn't have that much of a sweet tooth, loved it so much when I tried it the first time that in London she ordered one herself too.
The following day three of us popped to Primark on Oxford Street to pick up a four wheel suitcase as after the antics the day before, I didn't want to lug my other one around all day and we'd thought that the hotel would have been closer. Unfortunately, we were low on time as we had to get back to meet the other two and check out, so I didn't browse the store but would love to go back, even if just for the huge Primark! We picked up some breakfast in Pret a Manger (another first for me and one I definitely want to go back to!) and got the bus back to the hotel. As it was on a hop-on-hop-off bus, it took a while to get back to the hotel, especially as we'd waited ages for it to get there (we were going on the smaller, less popular route) so we were late for check out and had a rush of a morning (although luckily the hotel were fine about it). Eventually we got back and got our stuff ready for the afternoon. After grabbing some lunch in Garfunkels (I had another Arrabbiata, told you I love it) we pretty much stayed on the bus for the rest of the afternoon- the traffic was particularly bad that day so it took a long time to get anywhere) however we saw some great sights and learnt a lot from the bus tour guide (I want to say his name was Kenny but I think I'm wrong), who made the trip interesting and amusing. Once we got to the Tower of London, we hopped off and got a boat back up the river Thames to West Minster. The guide on the boat was lovely as well and made the trip very entertaining as well as interesting. At this point, we pretty much got the bus to the train station and then the train home. Although we didn't fit everything in that we wanted to do, we made the most of the time we had there and had a lovely trip.

London was a fun trip and left me with a much more pleasant experience than last time as although it was busy, it was nothing compared to the first time I visited London. I had some lovely company and did some great things so it really felt like a little holiday.

Thank you for reading this post, I hope you enjoyed hearing about my recent trips. Have you been anywhere nice recently? If you enjoyed this post and want to see more from me, you can follow my social media links in the top right hand corner of the blog to see when I next upload.

Love, Steph x
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A Busy Week: Skegness & Sheffield

Recently, I had one of my busiest weeks of the year, doing a whole bunch of nice things, some of which I want to share with you. On Friday 26th, my mum, brother and I headed to a town near Skegness to stay with my auntie and uncle for the night. We arrived mid afternoon and almost immediately headed to the beach with the dogs, the gorgeous sunshine shining down on us. The beach was fairly quiet and for the most part we didn't see many people at all in the section we spent most of our time. I am not a big fan of the beach normally as I hate when sand sticks to you for weeks afterwards and the sea itself is kind of terrifying... not being able to see what's beneath you. However, I did venture in a little more than normal (still not far by anyone's standards) and enjoyed the feeling of the water lapping around my feet. My dog is not normally one for water... until this year she wouldn't put her paw anywhere near it, but she seemed to really enjoy leaping and splashing through the waves, even swimming when it got too deep for her. Sitting out and enjoying a BBQ in the lovely sunshine made a nice end to the day and all of this was topped off by the beautiful, clear sky full of stars that allowed you to see so much more than a lot of the built up areas permit. All of these things contributed to the happy, relaxing time I had there and it genuinely gave me a few hours of calm and joy that I hadn't properly felt for a while.
Monday morning (29th), I took off to Sheffield with my best friend for a day at the spa and a night in a hotel. After opting for bags in case we couldn't check in, we soon regretted not having a mini suitcase to wheel around when we walked through the city centre, arms weighed down by a big, heavy bag. Fortunately, the room was ready early so when we got there, we could dump our bags and pop across to Caffe Nero for lunch. Once returning, we went down to the spa for a relaxing afternoon. The pool itself was much bigger than I expected and although it wasn't really a 'swimming' pool, we did get a few lengths in and then just enjoyed floating around the water. The blue lights in the ceiling and calming music, made the whole atmosphere ideal for a relax. Between swimming sessions, we spent some time in the various rooms including, the rock sauna, the steam room, the aroma grotto (fragrance steam room), the ice igloo and the experience showers, all of which made the experience lovely, despite the fact that steam makes breathing a lot more challenging! We then spent a few hours getting ready in a relaxed manner before dinner. As we'd booked a package including dinner and a treatment, our meal was off the set menu, which included a couple of options for each course.
Galette
When both George and I saw the menu, we were both worried about what the food would be like as none of it was what we would typically order however, it was really tasty! I had Mixed Vegetable Soup, followed by a Tomato and Feta Galette and finished with a Baked Alaska. Prior to this, I had never even heard of a Galette but it was really delicious and something I would definitely consider ordering again or even making myself at home. The following morning, we had booked to have our nails done as our chosen treatment and both the treatment room and service were lovely. My nails lasted as long as they said they would, more or less chip free (3 days). However the thing that really stole the show was the breakfast buffet! You could help yourself to various items including a range of fruit and yoghurt options, cereal, pastries, toast and English Breakfast ingredients. Alternatively (or in addition), you could order the likes of porridge, eggs benedicts and omelettes. Sticking to the buffet, I loved the options and made several trips back for watermelon and other fruit, as well as for the mushrooms which were some of the nicest mushrooms I've had. All in all, the trip was lovely and relaxing and the Mercure St Paul's Hotel itself was an amazing place. It was located right near everything you could want in Sheffield, the hotel room and general building was of a high standard; very clean, spacious and well designed, staff were friendly, the spa had plenty to offer and the food was delicious. If you find yourself needing or wanting a hotel in Sheffield, I highly recommend this one!

I didn't expect myself to ramble quite as much as I have in this post so I've decided to split it into two parts. To read about my trip to London, you can pop back tomorrow! I hope you've enjoyed hearing about my week, let me know what you got up to. If you liked this post and want to see more from me, you can follow my social media links in the top right hand corner of the blog to see when I next upload.

Love Steph x
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Worries About Uni: Collab With Severina

The run up to starting uni can be a whole mix of emotions from excitement to fear, relief to stress and a whole host in between. More often that not, it's a mix of them all, be that all at once or each taking their turn. Whilst I'm excited to start the next chapter of my life and have been for a while, there are also several things I'm slightly less sure about. Severina and I decided to share with you our anxieties and nerves about uni so that anyone also heading off to uni might be comforted by the fact they aren't alone, people who have been through it might remember the feelings and we, ourselves, can look back on it in a few months and maybe give you an update on how those things actually ended up happening to reflect ourselves and show anyone heading to uni soon that (hopefully), these worries are nothing to be too concerned about. We have also given advice to each other and anyone else experiencing these thoughts as we have different perspectives and different worries to one another, although some do slightly overlap. Once you've had a read through this post, don't forget to check out Severina's post here to see what she is worried about and the advice I gave her. (Plus, check out her blog and give her a follow anyway because she's so lovely and I love her blog!) After that long introduction, let us begin...

My Worries

Freshers week: Whilst a lot of people look forward to Freshers week and have high expectations of the event, I don't share those feelings; I'm more looking forward to starting the course and 'proper' uni the week after. (Although I am looking forward to the freebies!) One reason for this is because I'm not a big fan of clubbing or anything along those lines, as discussed in this post. Crowds, loud music and heavy drinking aren't really my thing, I'm more of a smaller, quieter night out with dinner and cocktails, kind of person, which from stories and advertising, freshers doesn't seem to contain a lot of. Surrounding this dislike, it makes me worry that forming friendships in that first week will be more difficult or that I'll feel more alone should I end up in a flat full of party goers. I'm sure I won't be the only one with those preferences, it's just a case of where to find them, which may not happen in the first week. I then don't want pay to go somewhere I'm going to be uncomfortable but don't want to isolate myself from the go- it's a tricky balancing act but I think the last thing I should do is be someone I'm not, for the sake of pleasing other people. As I've been told before, anything goes in uni, so all being well this worry won't be a concern for long once I actually get there.
Severina’s Advice: Everyone feels anxious about Fresher’s week as nobody knows anyone, however it’s important to remember everyone’s in the same boat as you are. Don’t worry about not being a party person as there will also be others at uni who don’t like partying so you’ll be able to make friends with them.  Also, during Freshers week universities tend to hold all kinds of events so if you’re not the partying type then I’m sure there’ll be an event for you, plus that gives you the opportunity to meet people.

Being surrounded by mess! I'm fortunate enough to have an ensuite room so the only real concern is the kitchen... I like to have a clean area and whilst I know the kitchen will not be a clean area 90% of the time unless I am EXTREMELY lucky, I would really like to have a few people in my flat, who like me, like to just get on and sort their own stuff out so it's not a messy pile up in and around the sink. As I don't like to be in that environment, I would be more inclined to just suck it up and tidy it every so often but I don't want to give myself the role of a cleaner so that people think they can get away with it, but nagging flatmates to wash up is probably not the best start to a friendship or even living arrangement.
Severina’s Advice: With people sharing a kitchen it should be everyone’s responsibility to look after it and makes sure it’s clean, in some cases universities can charge you if it’s left really untidy. If you're concerned about other people being messy then make sure that everyone cleans up after themselves (it just has to be a friendly reminder). When it comes to stuff like washing up dishes and not wanting to be the person that washes up all the time, then maybe come up with a rota with your flatmates. That way it’s fair and it’s not left to one person all the time. However if your flatmates are still really messy and its making you uncomfortable then you should have a quiet word with your accommodation officers. After all you’re living and paying for your accommodation (which isn’t cheap) and you have the right to live in a clean environment.

Disappearing food: I am hoping to get my hands on a mini fridge (my accommodation allows them but many don't, so check before you buy) so that I can keep my fruit and stuff that I definitely don't want stealing, in my room, away from anyone who might fancy a nibble. I'm sure at some point (many points) some of my food will go disappearing into someone else's mouth but at least the main items will be safe for me to eat as and when I want them.
Severina’s Advice: When you first start university, universities recommend bringing sticky labels to stick onto your food until you get to know your flatmates (and vice versa!), that prevents your food from being eaten. If someone does eat your food, try not to get too annoyed as we all make mistakes and some people do it without realising what they’re doing. However, if the problem persists then politely tell the person who is eating your food that you don’t appreciate them taking your food without your permission, after all you’re the one paying for it!

Making friends: The one you've all heard before! This one is not my biggest concern at the moment, simply because I've been told so many times that it isn't anything to worry about, everyone's in the same boat, yada yada... but obviously moving away from everyone and everything you know is scary and so the prospect of having to meet all new people is daunting and kind of terrifying. Odds are, somewhere in the uni are a bunch of people you'd get on really well with, it's just finding them.
Severina’s Advice: Steph’s quite right with everything she says here and this is one of the most common university worries! You just have to find people who you share common interests with and try to make friends with people on your course. The best advice I received was if people aren’t willing to treat you right then they aren’t worth it, and it’s not your fault that they choose to treat you like that. Another KEY piece of advice when making friends, ALWAYS be yourself! You should NEVER have to change yourself to fit in with others, if you do, they aren’t worth it, plus you’ll find people who love you for who you are.

Not having family in the room across the hall: For almost 19 years, I've lived with the same people... my mum, dad and brother and not being able to see them everyday will be a very weird and difficult experience. Whilst I'm excited to move out and try things for myself, I'll miss having my them there for a chat or a cuddle whenever. Knowing they're an hour away and not just on the next floor will take some serious getting used to and I'm sure we'll just have to make up for lost time in the weekend and holiday visits! Linked to this, is a worry for them back home, my mum in particular as we spend a lot of time together and without me there, the house will probably be rather lonely- my brothers out 90% of the time and my dad works in the week, whereas mum works less hours. It can't be easy losing two people (in different ways) that you spend a lot of time with; I don't want her to feel alone at home. She'll just have to make plenty of trips in my direction! (I added this one after Severina added her advice which is why she didn't respond to this in her advice section).
Severina’s Advice: Obviously moving away from family is always going to be difficult but it’s also important to remember that it's part of growing up and becoming independent. If you're not too far away, then it’s easy to pop back and visit when you’re not busy at university. With today's technology, it's really easy to keep in touch with your family; you can call, text, Skype etc.

Doing everything myself: Having so much responsibility will probably come as a bit of a shock, and whilst individual tasks might not be too tricky, having to keep on top of them all won't exactly be a walk in the park!
Severina’s Advice: Again, learning to become an independent takes some time and getting used to but it’s also part of growing up. If you’re worried about keeping on top of tasks then get a planner. That way you can organise and prioritise what tasks need to be done. Also, don’t be afraid to ask for help if you need it. Not many of us are experts at cooking, washing and cleaning when we come to university. If you're struggling with something (e.g washing) maybe ask one of your flatmates to help you. If you’re really struggling then ask your family to help.

There are a few more things I could have mentioned but they were the main ones. Let me know if you have or had similar worries about heading off to uni. Make sure you go over to Severina's blog and check out her post on the topic. I enjoyed creating a post with her, especially something like this where we are both experiencing the same thing but have different perspectives and worries about it. It's hopefully given us both some reassurance as well some readers in a similar position.

Thank you for reading this post, I hope you enjoyed it. If you want to see more posts from me, you can follow my social media links in the top right hand corner to see when I next upload.

Love, Steph x
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NYX Liquid Suede Review

This product is amazing, NYX lip products are amazing, NYX is amazing! After a long wait for my local Boots store to stock NYX, I have finally got my wish and couldn't be happier about it (actually, I could if they had the body shimmer in Platinum in stock when I went, but I'll let that one slide). After purchasing the NYX Liquid Suede, in the shade Kitten Heels to go with my red Boutique Of Molly dress, I knew I had to share my thoughts on the product asap!
I am familiar with the formula of the Soft Matte Lip Creams and love everything about those so I wasn't sure whether to go for one of them in a red shade or try the liquid suede range, but as the shade Kitten Heels seemed like the best colour pay off and match for my dress, I figured I'd give it a go, and I'm so thankful that I did. The image above shows the lip product on before the party compared to after... sorry about the snapchat filters, I didn't take them for the blog post as didn't plan to do that until later, but they've come in handy so hopefully you can still see the product well. I would have to give this product a 10/10 and here's why...
  • At £6.50 a pop, you can't go far wrong and the amazingness that is this product, means it's a blummin' good deal- you wouldn't believe it's by a drugstore brand.
  • It lasts SOOOO well and for a long time!- I wore mine to a party last night and didn't have to top it up once (it probably could have done with a quick top up round the edges towards the end of the night but nothing you can't get away with). It lasted five hours, four drinks and three courses without budging and it wasn't until the third drink that any lip product transferred to the glass at all... my clear lip balm marks more than that!
  • It's easy to apply and would probably be even easier had I used a lip liner but I personally, don't think you need one with this product!
  • It doesn't bleed around the edges.
  • When it does start to come off, it just starts to disappear at the edges rather than crumbling or pealing away so it would be easy to top up or just as fine to leave if you don't have that much longer left to wear it.
  • Superb colour pay off even with just one coat.
  • The shade Kitten Heels is gorgeous... a perfect statement red!
  • Did not feel drying on the lips, in fact, it had a softer feel than a lot of lip products, particularly matte ones.
  • At the end of the night, I thought I was going to have to fight to get it off my lips given how well it stayed on all evening but nope, it came off with a quick wipe of the lips.
There is nothing bad I can say about this product or about any NYX product I've tried so far. I highly recommend giving their products a go if you haven't already, especially their lip stuff. If you're interested in getting your hands on the NYX liquid suede lipsticks and you're from the UK, you can find them here. Thank you for reading this post, if you havenany NYX recommendations, let me know as I'd love for my NYX collection to grow. If you want to see more posts from me, you can follow my social media links in the top right hand corner, to see when I next upload. 

Love, Steph x
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