Wednesday, 30 November 2016

BLOGMAS ANNOUNCEMENT! ❄️

So tonight's post is a little different. I have decided this year that I am going to Blogmas! I am so excited to write a post everyday of this month/up until Christmas. Officially, it's up until Christmas but I haven't quite decided if I'm just going to go all out and write for the remaining few days.

I'm going to be having a few running themes that will hopefully last.

Monday will continue to be an event and a YouTube video.
Thursday will continue to be Thursday Thoughts.
Friday will be Film Friday with either some sort of review. I will probably throw in a TV series of book.
Sunday will be a weekly recap with a picture from each day and brief description of each day.

The remaining 3 days (Tuesday, Wednesday and Saturday) will be a complete mixture of anything and everything. I'm hoping to do some collabs with some other blogger friends so looks out for a maybe 'Work It Wednesday' series! :)

I can't wait to right them so I hope you are excited to read them! Any suggestions, leave them in the comments below :)

Monday, 28 November 2016

Hobbie Stuart / SECRET SHOW STORIES 🎸

I am so grateful to the girl who gave me her ticket last minute to the Hobbie Stuart concert! I had such an amazing night and I literally can't believe how many people I saw and met!

Click here to watch the concert and my vlog or watch below :)
After a long day at university, I said goodbye to my flatmates for the weekend as they were all going out to different places across the country - Cardiff, Thanksgiving Festivals and Harry Pot-Tour - so I was going to be home alone. I vacuumed, mopped and dusted the flat which always makes me feel so much better and then got ready for the concert. I settled on warmth over style because it was freezing outside and it was definitely a good call to layer up :)
It took me ages to find the venue. I put in the postcode and name 'Under the Bridge' into CityMapper (my lifesaver) and must have walked back on forth up this one stretch of road 5 times. I eventually asked the security guard at Chelsea Football Club and it turns out it was a club in their complex. They have all set up for Christmas and it looks so stunning. It's a very posh location and even though I felt way too casual, I was glad because when I arrived, there was still a huge queue outside which I was in for almost 40 minutes.
Due to the slow security access, I missed the first support act completely and almost all of the second. I nipped to the toilet (very glamourous) and then headed to find my concert spot. I found the perfect spot, at the front of the slightly raised stage. It was perfectly central and I could see everyone's head so it worked out really well. Plus I had a barrier to rest on to my ankle didn't have to be in constant use.

Ebony Day was the last support act and she was incredible. She's so pretty and her voice is beautiful. it's so serene and pure it was just an honour to listen to her.

For some reason my 4G wasn't working so a picture I'd posted a while ago hadn't posted. I ended up connecting to their WiFi and so it went through. Hobbie suddenly tweeted back panicking I was still queuing outside. I felt terrible that I'd made him panic but hopefully he didn't worry too much...
I was expecting him to sing songs from his first EP and they were perfect. Just how I expected. He interspersed some new songs throughout and said he's releasing a new EP in January. Yey! Honeslty I loved those songs. I can't wait until I can hear them again and again and again.
When he did the Justin Bieber cover I was in love but then he switched it up and did it into a medley with 2 other songs. I can't remember them but it was just perfect! Without out that was my favourite performance. 
I was shocked when he said he was going to sing Hallelujah. What an anthem of a song and I never would have put that song and his voice together. It was incredible and I was blown away. I loved that he did some songs with the guitarist and drummer and then others just him and his acoustic guitar.
As the show was coming to an end, Hobbie said that that song was meant to be his last but he was going to sing one for. I think he was thoroughly enjoying himself and didn't want to come down, it was so sweet to see. When that finished - it was Skinny Love if I remember correctly - he was just putting his guitar down when a group of his friends, stood just in front of me, started shouting for one more song. Hobbie quickly looked behind the scenes for a thumbs up and happily obliged. He picked an audience member to give him a song (the first he didn't know) and then, again, just sang it perfectly. With no practice. Talent.
At the end of his set, Hobbie announced he would meet and greet anyone who wanted to meet him. I thought that was so sweet but I was desperate for the toilet so I went and when I came back, the queue wrapped around the entire room and more. I was in for a long wait.

I'd heard Lucy and Lydia laughing during Ebony's set and when I found them, I couldn't take my eyes off them. I really wanted to go up and say hi to them but I felt so bad because they were having so much fun and they were here to enjoy themselves as well.
While I was waiting, I also saw Gabby but she was saying bye to Hobbie and then went into the VIP room and quickly left. As she went in, she almost fell over the roped barrier. Luckily, Hannah and the security guard was there to catch her. I don't think she's had the best day because she was also a little late and I didn't want to be the one to grab her while she was leaving.

Finally I joined the queue because I swear it wasn't getting any smaller. I met a couple of really nice girls. They were from London but met while studying Fashion at Southampton University. They were really nice and then we were joined by a couple of Hobbies friends who'd seemingly got bored of waiting and also apparently felt very awkward watching another of their friends flirting. Ha!

By this point, all of Hobbie's friends - including Lucy and Lydia - had joined the queue which was so funny to me because they were literally queuing to see a close friend. But the securtiy had told them they had to or they had to leave.

The boys were obviously flirting with Sophie and Shardy but they were nice and asking lots of questions. I don't think the girls got it at all which made it all the more entertaining for me...hehe. They were more angry at the fact the boys didn't believe that they were 27 and 28! I can't remember his name (Josh?) but one of them was defintely more keen.

When I finally met Hobbie he was still in good spirits even after probably lose to 500 people I think he said. We took and quick picture, I thanked him and then asked if could record a quick message to the girl who gave me her ticket. He did and I hope she likes it! Thank you Hobs :)
I waited for the girls before I left because I wanted to say a quick goodbye. We were just chatting when Josh (? I'm sorry!) came up and invited us to the after party. I use the term 'us' very loosely here because it was obviously wayyy more orientated towards the girls. I was like no way, that would be so awkward going to Hobbie's house(!) but they were like urm maybe and asking where it was and how they were getting there. Gosh, I couldn't imagine doing something like that. I ended hugging them bye and leaving. Not going to lie, the rest of the journey home, I was kind of regretting it and I'm really interested to hear if they decided to go or not. How exciting!

After leaving, I began the worst journey home ever. It started off by passing lots of pretty Christmas decorations and ended with 5 tubes, a long bus ride and huge rats! Eek... They kept cancelling and diverting and then changing and then my phone was about to die so I decided to jump on a straight bus instead. Nightmare!

Friday, 25 November 2016

My Pandora Bracelet - Charms Story 💍

I've always dreamed of having a Pandora Charm bracelet and as my older sisters got theirs for their 16th birthdays, that's what I had expected too. Instead, I was surprised that my mum got it for my 15th Christmas. It has seriously become one of my most prized possessions and my favourite piece of jewellery. I wear it with almost everything, whether day or evening.

Each charm means some special to me and that's what I've always wanted. I'd always told myself I want a charm a year to represent a specific milestone in that year. I've been very lucky and spoilt that I have received many more than that, but still they all each have their own story and meaning.

So without further ado, this post is going to be the story behind my charms in the order I received them! I also have 2 clips (£25) that I treated myself to. They are very simple in plain silver, just to keep the charms separated because I used to get really annoyed when they threaded themselves.

  1. ALPHABET H CHARM - £30: My first charm that I got with my bracelet was a H, obviously meaning Hannah. 
  2. PEARL PENDANT CHARM - £40: Along with the initial I also received a dangly pearl representing my birth month, birthstone. 
  3. STUDY BOOK CHARM - £30: I work really hard academically and given that I never did SATs or any other exams before, GCSEs were my first major studying period. In the first year, I got this cute pile of books charm for the Y1 results. One side has an owl with a hat and the other says 'STUDY'. 
  4. HEART LOCK & KEY CHARM - £30: For when my sister told me she was pregnant with my niece. Click here to read the story. 
  5. 16TH BIRTHDAY PENDANT CHARM - £35: For my 16th birthday I started the tradition of these dangly numbers.  
  6. CUPCAKE CHARM - £40: A funny thing to symbolise my GCSE Y2 results, right? Next to my high school is an amazing little cafe called Cafe 43 and they do the best cupcakes. After going into school to pick up my results, I went back to my friend, Hannah's house, and we celebrated with a group of friends before my mum picked us up and took us out for lunch at said cafe where we all had a yummy cupcake! You may notice on Instagram I go quite a lot! 
  7. ROYAL CARRIAGE CHARM - £65: My sister, Vicky, has always been an incredible gift giver and as my 16th birthday was just after prom she got this cute carriage that has a gold crown and mini pearl on top. Even though I hate every single picture of prom, I'm glad I have something special to remember the fancy occasion. 
  8. STAR PAVÉ CHARM - £35: My mum has always called me 'her little superstar', especially in regards to my academics, so for my AS Level results she helped me celebrate with this little sparkly star. My friends and family defintely paid attention too because for my next christmas, my sister's got me the matching ring and my friends for my 18th got me matching earrings. I seriously love them! 
  9. AEROPLANE CHARM - £30: I still can't believe I did it but almost 4 years ago now, I took my first solo trip to Tanzania with Gap Medics. I had the most incredible time meeting new people, gaining experience in a Tanzanian hospital and volunteering with a small orphanage nearby the house. Click here for a blog post and here for a video. 
  10. 18TH BIRTHDAY PENDANT CHARM - £35: As I said earlier, the tradition continues with a dangly 18 for my 18th birthday. I just hope my mum remembers the 21 for next year!
  11. CAMERA CHARM - £45: I love photography (if you hadn't noticed) and it's one of both mine and my father's biggest passion. This just reminds me of one of my favourite quotes: "You only regret the photos you don't take."
  12. OPENWORK FLOWER CHARM - £20: My mum's friends bought it for my 18th along with some flowers. Even though real flowers die, these never will. 
  13. BIG BEN CHARM - £40: When I opened my A2 results page 2 long years ago, I was seriously shocked when not only had I got some incredible A-Level results (A*A*AAA) but I'd gotten into my then dream uni, University College London (UCL) to study Medicine. Livinng in London, Big Ben seemed only right to celebrate the achievement. 
  14. OFFICIAL BRITISH TENNIS CHARM - £35: I've always loved tennis and with my grandma's addiction, I'm surprised I haven't been earlier, but for my first live tennis matches at Wimbledon 2015 I got some tennis racquets. Later in the year, I also went to the ATP Open Finals and less than a year later, Wimbledon for the second year. 
  15. EIFFEL TOWER CHARM - £40: My latest addition to my bracelet is the Eiffel Tower. Even though it's the UK's neighbour, I went to France for the first time after boarding the Eurostar and landing in Paris. After being inspired by my sister Catherine's 6 month solo travels, I thought I could defintely manage a few days alone. Yes I went up! Click here for blog list and here for vlog playlist. 
I think my bracelet is getting pretty full now so I'm not sure how many more years I'll be able to fit on. I am really glad that they all mean something and I honestly love it when people ask me about it because it's something that I truly treasure. 

How many of you have a Pandora bracelet?  

P.S. Some of the charms have now unfortunately been discontinued so the links may not match exactly or may no longer be in stock. 

Thursday, 24 November 2016

Coping with Situations for the First Time (Medic Series) 🏥

I recently got a BMA update about to cope with medical situations when you experience them for the first time. I thought it was super important to remember for my own self but also for others in a similar position. Disclaimer some of the content is direct from the BMA Site. I thought I would share some of my experiences too.
1. How is it going to feel?
Your first cadaveric dissection can be an unsettling experience. It is important that you prepare for it in advance, as the way you think about death will go a long way to shaping what kind of a doctor you become.

Here at UCL we still do full body dissection thanks to the gracious people that donate their bodies to medical research. I think the first time I went to the dissection lab, I didn't know what to expect but I just went in very open minded. I thought I would be worried or maybe even overwhelmed but I ended up just digging straight in. I think as long as you remember to treat the body with respect and how you would want to be treated if the situation was reversed, it's an enjoyable experience. At the end of the day, you've got the most incredible learning tool so you should take full advantage of it.

For everyone who doesn't do dissections this will sound really odd but it makes you super hungry! We've decided it because of the formaldehyde smell...

2. Meet the parents
It is a privilege to be at the birth of a baby, but it can also be overwhelming. Students should prepare themselves by ensuring they know what their role will be during the delivery and meeting the parents beforehand.

I've only had an experience with birth so far in Tanzania. It was such an amazing trip with Gap Medics and I got the incredible opportunity to not only witness three live birth but also help deliver a baby. I'm sure it's a totally different experience in the UK but I just remember thanking and congratulating the momma on her strength and beautiful new bundle of joy. I specifically learnt the words in their language because at the end of the day, I was encroaching on their lives and not the other way around.

3. Don't take it personally
Don't take it personally, be candid about what you can and cannot do, and don't lose your temper. Michael Peters has some advice for dealing with angry patients.

I'm never afraid to admit my faults and while I haven't always been good at it, I am getting better. I think it's important to remember that admitting your faults isn't a weakness but I strength as you have the courage to show your vulnerabilities, to be open and to be honest with not only yourself but others too.

4. Finding your feet
Advice for making maiden ward-round presentations bearable: do your homework, treat your patient as an individual and don't whatever else you do attempt to bluff it if you can't answer a question.

Obviously, this has yet to be a part of my experience but I think with the limited OSCE station practice and literal teaching, the emphasis is definitely on be prepared to not know the answer and say you will look it up later, but remember you will usually know more than the patient regardless of if you think you know nothing or not.

5. Like drawing blood from a stone
Michael Peters offers advice to medical students about how to take blood for the first time. Watch experienced colleagues, build a rapport with your patient and don't panic - lots of practice will make perfect.

I can't even begin to explain how nervous I am to take blood but by the end of the school year, I should be a boss! ...hopefully. Whenever I've watched people take blood, I've always seen how they put the patient at ease especially nervous one.

6. Welcome to the Big Pond
When you begin your medical degree you may find that, unlike at school, you are not always top of the class, but just one of many bright, motivated people. Read our advice on dealing with the feelings this may provoke.

This seriously couldn't be more true! I've never thought of myself as intelligent because it was just who I was but when I got my grades at GCSEs, A-Levels and even getting into Medical School, I was so proud of myself. I thought that would be the hardest part but no... I can't even begin to express how many times I feel like the idiot in the class at medical school. Everyone is so smart, clever, incredible at everything and I feel like I'm the only one who's totally confused and behind in everything.

7. Coping with the death of a patient
When a patient dies medical students may experience a range of emotions, including sadness, guilt and anger. It is important to acknowledge such feelings and often helpful to share them with others.

Having spoken to other people in my age group, I was shocked to find that I was one of very few who had actually had a personal experience with death, both personal and independently. I've lost a lot of people close to me and as sad as it is, I know I've gotten through it. I grieved, I dealt and while I'll never forget, the pain does slowly dissipate and fade into a dullness.

I think one of the most eye-opening times for me was when my grandfather, my Pop-Pop, passed away. When I look back, I remember it being such a blur; I remember the little details but then I remember none of it. It's an odd feeling... But a couple of years after the fact, my mum told me how proud she was of me in that moment and the thing that's always stuck with me and makes me continue to strive for greatness in this crazy difficult path I've chosen to take is that she said "That's when I realised what a great doctor you'd make."

I'm not sure what made me first say "I want to be a doctor" but the fact that she told me that makes me unbelievably determined to achieve that. If I can put someone else at ease and stay strong for them while I, myself, am grieving, I know, deep down, despite my worries, I'll be able to do it for others.
___________________________________

Honestly, as scary as some of these sound, I can't wait to experience so many first's in my career. I can't wait to see how I manage, how I deal and how I learn from everything that comes my way. the first time I go on a ward round, the first time I have my on patient, the first time I have a night shift, the first time I have to admit defeat, the first time...everything is a first time once. 

Wednesday, 23 November 2016

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them (Review) 👾

I loved all the Harry Potter films and while I wasn't a massive fan of the books - I thought they went into too much detail - I did read them all, a long time ago! I really wanted the series to be left where it was so when I heard about the Harry Potter and the Cursed Child play I had mixed emotions...albeit I did go on to read the book

When I heard of this new film series franchise, I was shocked but of course, I had to watch it. 
I went in with a totally open mind. I hadn't read any reviews, I hadn't read the book and I hadn't even watched the trailer. Click here if you want to watch the trailer. 
I have to say, I'm pleasantly surprised. In fact, more than that...I really enjoyed it. When the opening credit came on to the theme tune of Harry Potter, I thought it would be very same-y and I was a little upset but then as soon as the film started I really felt that it's a totally new film series and not at all like Harry Potter. With the historical scene setting, all new characters and new plot line, it doesn't feel like a Harry Potter film but I actually like that. You don't need to be up-to-date on the Harry Potter world and you don't miss anything by not being a part of the fanzone. "It plays a homage."
Newt Scamander arrives in New York to pursue his work promoting the care of magical creatures, but finds himself drawn into a conflict between the wizarding world and witch-hunters led by Mary Lou Barebone. Quickly, who looses some of the collection of beasts he has brought with him and so he battles against the odds to find them all while trying to help solve the mystery behind the magical mystery going on in the city.

Pretty early on. I was impressed with the film. I loved how the magic was almost archaic and it had a sentiment about it. The 'muggle' worthy suitcase feature made me laugh. This movies was a perfect easy going, laugh-a-minute comedy. It was so funny! There were some really clever jokes entwined as well as nice little inside jokes between certain characters.
Without a doubt, the acting is supreme. Eddie Redmayne has always amazed me, especially since his portrayal in The Theory of Everything. Somehow he seems to be the perfect person for every character he plays. I also loved Dan Fogler as the No-Maj (muggle for Americans). His naivety and easy going nature was just fascinating to see as well as the connection he found to the wizarding world. Furthermore, I actually loved seeing the little differences between the English and American Wizarding World, from vocabulary, rules, leadership and the school - it's not Hogwarts anymore, but Ilvermorny and the competition between which is the better one is fueled.
I was really impressed by the suitcase world. All the graphics are incredible and truly believable. There was one seen where the creature and the acting movements didn't quite match up but in the grand scheme of things, that can be totally written off. But more so, the beasts each have their own personalities and it's lovely to see the interactions between them and the wizards.
I loved the little flashbacks at the end and while it left more unanswered questions, it did nicely sum the film up in some aspects. 

I honestly can't wait to see the rest of the movies in this supposed 5 part series. I think that we will see some Harry Potter characters, of course with Dumbledore who was only mentioned by name in this film, as well as hopefully some more. It will be interesting to see what they do with the rest of the films because this one, while good, was very much reliant on a group of beasts being let loose and the battle to find them. In fact, there are so many unanswered questions that left the film feeling very unended.

We never actually learnt why Newt Scamander was in America and he never did actually do anything other than loose his beasts, find them again and then fail to help a young wizard.

PS. Trying to find good pictures of the film is almost impossible. it's defintely a tightly kept secret.

Monday, 21 November 2016

ATP World Tour Finals! Day 2 and 3 🎾

This past week I was lucky enough to not only go to the ATP World Finals once but twice. I went on Day 2 of the competition by myself - mainly to see Andy Murray! - and then I went with RUMS Tennis (my university Tennis club) on the following night. Click on the video below or here to see the fun footage :)

What an amazing of week of tennis so celebrate the last week of matches this season! I don't know if you follow me on twitter but I've been loving watching and keeping up to date on all the matches. I am so happy that Andy Murray has ended the year as world number 1, along with his brother for doubles. I had such a blast watching four of the matches live as well. I love living in London!
On Monday 14th, I first saw Kontinen and Peers against Lopez/Lopez and KP won 6-3, 7-6. I have to admit, my favourite part was the umpire saying Kontinen. I think it's like one of the best surnames!

Definitely some of the most eye-catching outfits of the week.
I was really impressed with the graphics used. It's such a different experience being there in person vs watching it on TV. You don't get the same experiences, you miss out on the interactiveness and comes across as much more closed off to the public when in fact, I felt very much a part of it.
The main reason I bought last minute tickets was to see the current world number one and the Great British legend, Andy Murray. I've been lucky enough to go to a lot of tennis matches since moving to London. 2 Wimbledon days and now 3 ATP evening sessions. I've loved every second but I've always hoped to see Andy and I finally have! :)
It was Andy Murray vs Marin Cilic and thankfully Murray won fairly easily winning 6-3, 6-2. I would have liked to see a bit of a closer match but to be honest, I would have been devastated if he'd lost aha.
I feel so bad, I did take a lot more pictures, but a lot of Marin's pictures were blurry, especially the serves so I don't have any shots of him serving. I loved his yellow and blue shorts though.

I thought it was a really nice touch that they interviewed both the loser and the winner of the match and it was really nice to hear from both sides. I was a little shocked at how many people left the arena before and during their speeches.

BYE!
Day 2 and Tuesday meant I was in for a totally unexpected treat! We headed to Wetherspoon's for some 'pre-drnking' although as I don't drink, I actually just went to watch a little bit of the practice sessions in the fan zone. I think it's really ncie that they have made it available to public viewing.
The doubles match was first with Dodig/Melo winning 7-5, 6-4 against Huey/Mirnyi. I hadn't noticed yesterday but they don't do advantages in the dueces which was such a strange concept to me and at first I thought I was crazy and totally missing the points. I'm assuming it's too speed the matched up..?


Once again, I love how bright their outfits are. It makes it so much more entertaining and easier to see. For some reason the singles players seem to insist on wearing dull, dark colours and most choose to wear blue on a blue court...great. I do like that they can wear what they want though and can express themselves. It's totally different from the prestige and tradition of Wimbledon where they HAVE to wear white. Totally not realistic on grass courts: oh the stains!
I do love going to events by myself. It just means you can do what you want, when you want and don't have to organise yourself around others or with them. But, even I'll admit, it's nice to talk to and chat with people during the breaks. We were defintely in for a treat in the singles matches. Ranji has a slight crush on Novak and I always root for the underdog so it was such a fun battle not only on court but between the pair of us too! 
So it was time for the main match of the night. I hate saying that because I feel like I'm brushing off the doubles men who still play fantastically but I'm just not as invested in that championship. It was time for Novak Djokovic vs Milos Raonic.

I loved how uninterested Novak was in the coin toss. While he was busy stretching the coin ended up spinning on it's side for a good 30 seconds before they had to reflip it. Such a funny moment!



Milos is such a powerful player and an incredible server but it's his shots back across the net that really impressed me in person. Literally looking at these pictures makes me wonder...how!?
Eventually Novak won 7-6, 7-6 but I can't even begin to explain how close it was...SO CLOSE! I was amazed. I wasn't expecting much but it was literally the best match I have ever seen live. Without a doubt these guys are two incredibly talented players and it defintely could have gone either way.  
Understandably, Milos as upset and annoyed with himself and he walked off the court before the interviews started. I felt so bad for him but I was pleased with how respectful Novak was and loved how he complimented Milos so much. 
I had a brilliant and loved every second of the last week! I especially loved this past weekends final two days. I can't even say how nervous I was on Saturday afternoon when I thought for a second, Murray might not make it through. So glad he did!

Can't wait for next year!

Ps. Click here for last year's video or watch below.