Have I reached any 2017 goals yet?

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Yesterday was my first full day in uni since six weeks ago, it was so good to be back and knowing I am getting that step closer to my goal. I feel motivated to achieve my goal and this week so far has been productive. A break is always so important in order to help motivate though- I always find a cup of tea rewarding or even a bath. This week I am rewarding myself with a spa day and I cannot wait. So at the beginning of January I did a post with all my goals for 2017, Admittedly I haven’t reached most of them yet but there is still time. Here are some I have started to tackle…

1.  Be more organised and mindful- Well so far I have been sticking at this, I now prep meals to take to university with me not only is it the healthier option but it’s saved me money. I write in my diary every night to reflect on my day and even if I have had a bad day I still reflect on it- not every day is going to be good.

2. Get more healthy and fit- I have been going to the gym four times a week and trying to eat a lot healthier so far it is going well. That of course is apart from the weekend just gone due to my boyfriend  treating me to a lush Wagamamas that I couldn’t refuse. I have been going swimming and reducing my carb intake so hopefully I’ll reach my goal by graduation.

3.Improve my photography and editing skills- Unfortunately this is one of the goals I have not started but it is still a goal I am yet to do. From next week my aim is to start practicing.

4.Make time for myself- I think I am doing quite well at this, lately I have been unwinding and allowing myself to relax and watch a bit of TV in bed. I have also been pampering myself and just giving myself that bit more time to relax. This week I want to order a new book so I can have some me time when reading.

5. Complete my adventures- Obviously these will take all year but they are in the pipeline. Next week I am booking my flights to Thailand and planning the trip. I am working hard to get my degree so hopefully in July that will pay off.

Have you tackled any of your 2017 goals yet? Do you have any tips to help me with mine? 

 

My Top Tips for party planning

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So at the moment I am in the middle of arranging my dads 40th birthday party whilst tackling my last semester at uni, nevertheless party planning is one of the hobbies that I just love doing so I thought why not? Not long ago I arranged my mum and dads wedding and also my 21st birthday so I’m slowly but surely getting better at finding the bargains! Here are a few of my tips…

Venue

At first my dad was very keen on having the venue where he got married which was quite pricey! For me a 40th is a special occasion but not quite as special as a wedding, plus he’d been there and done that venue. I always think the more local a venue is the more people will come because they don’t have to arrange transport and more importantly neither do you. After a bit of persuasion and actually telling my dad how much he’d save which was (£500) we agreed on a local venue and the cost was £50 and a £50 deposit- which allowed us more money to spend on the decorations.

Decorations  

I think you can make any room look pretty as long as you have the right colours and decorations. I am yet to choose a theme and decorations for my dads birthday but for mine I chose white and gold. My inspiration all came from pinterest there was so many things I loved on there and it isn’t hard to get carried away. However the majority of my decorations were actually ones I made myself or purchased from The Works and B&M bargains. I was able to get all my decorations for approximately £40 and the place looked lovely. I will be sure to check pinterest out for all future events.

Food

I made the mistake at my party of doing a buffet and a sweet trolley and a lot of food was wasted. After all majority of people go to a party to drink and dance (unless of course you are like me and sit in a corner stuffing your face with all the free food). Personally doing a few nibbley bits is perfect. My dad has his mind set on a hog roast  and after shopping around I have finally found and booked one. To be fair he was expecting to pay £600 for one but to me it was far too pricey! I found one for £475.00 catering for 70 people and they serve it all for you. So if my maths is right it saves my dad £125 just by taking that extra bit of time and shopping around. The go to hog roast for sure is Spitting Pig.

Music 

Learning from mistakes this time I have not spent £150 on a DJ for the party. My dads type of friends tend to prefer bands so my aim to get a band in for two hours has worked in my favour. You usually find that bands won’t be costly if they are trying to get their name out there or enjoy doing a gig! I was really lucky and managed to get the band for a really low price so it left me with a £100 spare on the music budget. With the remainder of the money I thought it would be useful to try and get a DJ in for the parts where the band had a break and to maybe start off and while DJs can be expensive I found one for £50 still saving me £50. Often people just assume they need a DJ at the party but it can always give a nice effect to have a singer or a band in to suit your preferences and more often than not it will save you money.

Guest list

It is so so so important to do a guest list not only so you don’t jam pack the venue but to save money on the food. By doing a guest list and creating an event it gives you time to find out who is definitely coming and you can rule out who is not so you how many to cater for. More often than not you would have forgotten someone and a guest list helps you tick people off and it will hopefully trigger when you are reading through who you have forgotten.

 

The most important tip is shop around! Do you have any party planning tips?

The day in the life of a Carer.

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When I’m home from university my job role is a carer. Many people think the job is easy, as a matter of fact I would probably say it is harder than any studying I have ever done. The workload is tiring, mentally and physically draining yet extremely rewarding. I wanted to write this post to explain what a day in the life of a carer consists of and that is not actually an easy way out.

6:30am

I am exhausted from not working a 12-hour-day the day before, but I put on a smile and wake my first client of the day up with a smile and cheery voice. The call is half an hour long, in that time I have got to shower them, make their breakfast, make their bed, give them their medication and of course complete the paperwork. They can take a while to get up and this can sometimes delay the other calls but patience is a virtue. I always give my client the opportunity to choose what they would like to wear for the day even though they are receiving help from us it is always important to allow them to remain independent and let them to make their own decisions. It’s 7:00am I now dash to my next half an hour call maybe five minutes late and being that five minutes late makes a whole difference to someones mood. Even though it is not my fault I am late I will accept the blame and try and do that little bit more to cheer them up, sometimes it can be offering them a shave.

11am

I have got approximately 10 clients up now gave them all a shower or wash applied all the correct creams in the correct places and give out all their medication ensuring i’ve signed for it all. It is now time for me to clean someones house for an hour or to do their shopping. And to think doing someones shopping is one of the easy tasks it is not. I have a list with a certain amount of money and you have the responsibility to get all the correct brands of what they want whether you think they could get a cheaper deal it does not matter. If they don’t have the product it is preparing to get the blame when I return. I put all the shopping away in the correct places and fill out a cash transaction sheet. Most are always grateful and that is very rewarding that I have done that bit extra to help them.

12:00pm

Time to make everybody’s lunch now even though I am extremely hungry myself I will have to wait. Indecisive springs to mind, Would you like soup or a sandwich? No. Ok so what would you like? I don’t know he or she replies. After going through a numerous of lunch options we finally come up with a lunch they fancy. That could be a homemade salad or poached eggs with tomatoes bacon and mushrooms. Whatever they fancy I will do and then rush to my next call to ensure they get their full half an hour and go through the same questions as the previous call. But still, once they are settled enjoying their lunch it gives me some kind of pleasure knowing they are having what they fancied.

14:00

It is now finally time for my lunch and a break. I sit with my cup of coffee and lunch writing out my timesheet for my next set of calls ensuring I know all the key safes and addresses. Sometimes there might be a new person so I have to text my supervisor for the address and routine.

15:30

My shift starts at 4:00pm, often it takes around  twenty minutes to get there so I set off around 15:30. Usually the shift starts with assisting people to the toilets or re-positiong people using the slide sheet. It is then driving to peoples houses making their tea or peeling their veg ready and boiling their potatoes. Prepping their suppers and washing their dishes so that they can relax for the rest of the night.

19:00

I have made around nine different meals now. It’s now time for me to assist people into their nightwear and to bed. I’m not warm enough someone says. Ok I reply returning with a hot water bottle and tucking them in before leaving and locking their door. I have now assisted a numerous amount into nightwear and to bed, it’s finally my last call of the day. On this particular night, I have plans after work to meet my friends. Are you ok sir? I ask the gentleman that has fallen on the floor and his leg is trapped under a chair. An ambulance is on the way. Two hours later after comforting the man and ensuring he was ok and talking to him to cheer him up the ambulance finally arrives. It is now 22:30 I was supposed to be out at 21:00 but to me that did not matter as long as this man was safe and ok. I helped get his belongings together and a bag for hospital with all his medication. I had contacted his family and locked up his house.

midnight 

I finished work hours ago, why am I still thinking about it? Is that man ok? I wonder how he is feeling in hospital? They are just a few questions that cross my mind. I am back up at 6:00am to start the day again. It could be a completely different day it may run smoothly or I could be ringing more ambulances. You just never know what your day is going to be like. But at the end of the day you always know you have helped somebody and made their day better and that is what makes the job worth it.

 

With all the work load, the cooking, cleaning, medicating, supporting people… It is always rewarding to see someone smile at least once a day.

ITV Wales

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I spent a week covering the World GB rally taking part in a range of activities. The week involved teaching a presenting work shop to children aged 5-11 and providing useful presenting tips to them and giving relevant feedback.

On a day to day basis I was taking pictures and filming shots of the cars and interviewing the rally drivers alongside Rob Shelley from ITV wales.

I helped film and edit a preview clip for the six o clock Welsh news. On the start date of the rally I helped set up and position the camera and filmed the as-live of Rob Shelley and the rally which was live on the Welsh news.

 

Fabulous Magazine at The Sun

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In November 2016 I did a week placement at The Sun. I researched and prepared interview questions for celebrities such as Busted and Cheryl Cole.  I transcribed interviews and wrote features following the style guide. Participating in the showbiz side to the magazine was a key duty of my placement. I reviewed Kong: Skull Island film trailer and it was published for The Sun. Having my work published on the website is something I am proud of.

You can read my review by clicking this link.

My 2017 Goals

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Nine days late might be a bit late to start the whole new year new me thing but I’ve had these goals in mind and already started a few. I want 2017 to be a special year for me so here are a few personal goals I want to achieve this year!

Be more organised and mindful

For Christmas I received the book: ‘How To Be Mindful’- Anna Barnes and ‘The Book Of YOU’-  Jamie Oliver. I suppose when most people hear Jamie Olivers name they associate with healthy foods.. well this book isn’t just based on healthy eating it’s all kind of tips to increase your happiness and health.  The mindful book by Anna Barnes has lot’s of inspirational quotes that (for me) really work. I have already started taking tips from the books. So far this year I have de-cluttered my bedroom and give bag fulls of clothes to charity, instantly I felt better and more cosy in my room. Reflecting is very important to me, I have always kept a diary but not kept up to date with it this year i’d like to start reflecting every day so that it creates a book full of memories.

Get more healthy and fit

This is a bit cliche but it’s one of my main goals this year. Since starting university in 2014 I gained a lot of weight, slowly but surely it has been coming off but this year I want to achieve my goal. Firstly I want to plan my week of food and prep it all ready to save me grabbing a KFC on the way home from university. My slow cooker is a god send I get really excited knowing I have something good in there ready for when I get home. I must must must try and go to the gym more! I have not yet been to the gym in 2017 but I will (I promise.) I’ve been on some walks I took a hike up a mountain and the feeling you get when you reach the top and take a breath with all the views is so rewarding. I felt so refreshed after the walk so that is definitely something I need to do more of this year. Bike rides and tennis are on my list of getting fit this year so let’s see…

Improve my photography and editing skills 

At the moment on this blog my photographs are quite poor this year I want to invest in a new cannon camera along with a photography course and learn all about it. I can use Photoshop to a certain extent but i’d love to be able to have a mess round and improve my editing skills. I think getting a good eye catching image attract more. Not only for my blog do I want to improve but for all my adventures I have planned.

Make time for myself

I’m one of them who is always busy if i’m not in university i’ll be doing my role as a care assistant. I have now invested in some lovely skin products and bath products. Every night now I go to bed that bit earlier and give myself time to relax cleanse and tone. My goal is to set myself two nights a week where I forget about everything and have a hot bath and take time after it to pamper myself- do my nails, treat my hair and skin. the nights I have chosen for my relaxing nights are Thursday and Sunday– this being because I think a Thursday prepares you for the weekend you might be doing something nice so it’s important to feel nice. Sunday is meant to be a day of relaxing and it prepares you for the week ahead. Even if it is just an hour a night I want to make sure I pamper myself so I feel fresh and better about myself.

Complete my adventures

I’ve saved the best until last if you have read my last blog post you would have seen 2017 is an important year for me. This year is the year I graduate so I want to give my absolute all in my last part of my university course so it allows me to get the best grade I can get. I’m the first one to go to university in my family so I really want to make them proud. After I have graduated I’m hoping to go to visit Thailand for four weeks and travel to explore the different islands. In December I am planning to hopefully go to New York for a couple of days to get that Christmas feel. Of course to achieve these goals I have got to achieve my main goal and that is to get a job in Journalism or PR and to do something I love. This year I want to try my best to use my degree and find a job to suit me- I’ve got everything crossed!

Has anybody started to achieve their goals yet? Do you have any tips for me?

Autistic Society brings Christmas to autism- December 2016

A charity in Manchester that focuses only on autism planned a range of activities to suit the needs of those on the autism spectrum. Charity organiser Paul Nugent told me all about the events and the planning that goes into it. I produced this piece for our University newspaper because it was topical and recent. It also told a story about autism.

You can read my piece by clicking this link: 
http://quaysnews.net/index.php/2016/12/16/autistic-society-greater-manchester-area/

Do you have any tips of making things more fun for those on the autism spectrum?

Figures identify the main cause of loneliness is becoming a ‘young mum’

The British Red Cross and Co-op released figures that identify the main cause of loneliness is becoming a new mum at a young age. I interviewed a mother who recently had a baby and feels isolated. I wrote a feature describing her feelings from what she told. I produced this is an online piece for a news day during university. It was news but I also wanted to make people aware that there is support and encourage them not to suffer in silence.

You can read my piece by clicking this link:

You can also watch my TV package on it below:

One of the main triggers of loneliness is becoming a new mum- December 2016

The British Red Cross and Co-op revealed figures that identify becoming a new mum at a young age is one of the main causes of loneliness. I researched this matter and found a low percentage actually receive support for their post-natal depression. After finding out that many young mums suffer in silence I wanted to speak to a new mum who finds it difficult. I was able to get shots of her and her routine with her baby. I also interviewed a mental-health author who shared an expert opinion. I produced this piece of work for a news day in university. The reason I chose to do this was because it was recent news and I also wanted to make people aware that there is support.

You can watch below:

I also done and online and print piece. If you fancy a read please click this link.