Wednesday, 30 September 2015

DIY Autumn Drinks

 
Hi guys! So you may have already guessed by the title - this post is another recipe to add to my collection. I had so much fun making this DIY Autumn post, and I truly feel like its helped me get my blogging mojo back, which I felt myself losing last week. Anyway, these drinks are super delicious, and I know you probably just want me to get on with it, so here are the recipes!

Recipe 1: Cinnamon Roll White Hot Chocolate 
I'd never made a white hot chocolate before this, so I'm really proud of how it turned out and can't wait for you guys to experience this cinnamon-y goodness. It literally tastes like a hot cinnamon roll.
 
 
Ingredients (To make one mug):
1 cup of milk - I filled up the mug about 3/4 of the way up with milk to measure out the amount I wanted.
8 chunks of white chocolate
1 cinnamon stick
1/2 tbsp brown sugar
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
Whipped cream
Caramel sauce
 
 
1. Pour the milk into a pan and set it to simmer on the hob. Add the cinnamon stick, and when the milk is hot, take it off the hob and cover with a lid. Leave for 8 minutes and then take out the stick.
 
2. Put the pan back on the hob after the time (about medium to low heat) and stir in the brown sugar and cinnamon. After about a minute add the vanilla extract and then the chocolate, stirring until all the chocolate has melted into the mixture.
 
3. Take the pan off the hob and pour into a mug. Fill the mug the rest of the way up with whip cream and drizzle with caramel sauce. I topped my masterpiece with some adorable autumn leaf shaped sprinkles that I found in TKMaxx, and an extra square of milkybar.
 
4. Voila! Pop in a straw and enjoy.
 
 
Recipe 2: Caramel Apple Cider Float
This one reminds me of Halloween! Also, sorry for the mad decoration - I went overboard and now it looks like Halloween exploded on it.
 

Ingredients:
Ginger ale
Apple juice
Vanilla ice cream
Caramel syrup/sauce

1. Fill a glass 1/4 of the way up with apple juice, and then fill it up to 3/4 full with ginger ale. Add a teaspoon of caramel and stir it all up for a good minute until the caramel has disappeared.

2. Add a scoop of ice cream to the drink, filling the glass all the way up (the ice cream starts to melt into the fizz of the ginger ale, producing a 'float' effect).

3. Drizzle sauce on top and add decoration - I put pumpkin shaped sprinkles and orange edible glitter on top and accidentally added wayyyy too much. Tasted good though!

 
If you try either of these then please do share your feedback, I'd love to know what you thought! This type of post is one of my favourites to make, and you may have gathered that I love trying out new drinks (view my smoothie recipe here, and my iced mocha recipe here.)
 
What's your favourite Autumn/Fall drink?
Stay beautiful!
Emily xoxo
 
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Sunday, 27 September 2015

All About Them Charms


Hola bloggersphere!
Todays post is all about my Pandora bracelet, a gift I was given years ago by my parents, which my friends and family have added to over the time I've had it. It seems like every man and his dog have a Pandora bracelet, but I love how you can make it personal, and I like to think everyone's charms have their own story to tell.
 
 
Hedgehog - This was the first charm I ever received (from my parents), to remember the years I spent volunteering at a local animal shelter which specialised in, you guessed it, hedgehogs.
 
Turtle and Frog - These were given to me by various friends, purely picked because of my love for animals. Plus, how CUTE are these?!
 
Snowman - My Christmas charm, which is so lovely and special around the colder seasons. I think I got this from my parents on a rare year when England got some snow!
 
 
Flower Patterned Charm - Possibly one of the prettiest Pandora charms I've seen, and definitely one of my favourites on my bracelet.
 
Heart - My Aunty and Uncle gave this to me way back when, and I love the simplicity of the design.
 
Tropicana Charm - My boyfriend surprised me with this charm a few weeks ago and I couldn't be more in love with it, its so lovely! Who knew boys could pick out pretty things?
 
 
Musical Note - My parents got me this one after hearing me play my guitar upstairs in my bedroom for hours on end, day after day, for months and months. Even though I don't play quite as much anymore, this charm reminds me of the summer I didn't put my favourite instrument down.
 
Teacup - My friend Hannah got me this one, partly because we love tea parties, and partly to represent Taylor (Swift), our shared love who used to host backstage T-Parties after every concert.
 
Baseball - To represent my trip to America, when me and my family embarked on a giant road trip, beginning in LA and ending in Las Vegas, stopping at many places (including San Francisco and Yosemite) on the way. This happens to be the only charm that I've ever bought myself.
 
Bible - I got given this when I was confirmed a few years back, and I love this one so much. I don't think I've ever discussed religion on my blog, but it feels nice knowing that I have my faith with me at all times in the form of this cute little charm.
 
I do own a couple more charms, but those are ones I don't really wear at all!
Do you have a charm bracelet? If you do, what's your favourite charm?
Emily xoxo

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Wednesday, 23 September 2015

13 Reasons to Be Excited About Autumn


Guys. *Excited squeals* I can feel in it my bones (and also my toes, which are getting colder and colder by the minute) - we're about to receive a shedload of Autumny goodness and I couldn't be more happy to chill out by the fire and soak it all in. My favourite season is upon us, and I'm about to tell you just why I am so damn excited.

1. Dark lip colours
Oh deary me what a fun time of year this is for make up. No mid summer panics about foundation gradually sliding off your skin (although lets face it, when does it ever get hot enough to do that in England) and a ton of new berry and copper tones to add to your collection. My favourites for this time of year, lipwise, are 'Black Cherry' by Revlon or 'Wine' by Jack Wills.

2. Fairy lights and room d├ęcor
Lads, its time to get super cosy. At the moment I have a lantern on one side of my bed, this gorgeous light up E from RocketandRye on the other side, and fairy lights strung up above my headboard. I'm telling you, doing fairy lights halfway isn't doing them at all. Lighting up your room after a long day and chilling in your own little wonderland is one of life's small graces - never underestimate how a £4 string of fairy lights from IKEA can change your life.

3. Going to sleep with the sound of rain hitting the roof
Tucked up nice and warm under the covers, cuddling your kitty, with that absolutely lovely sound of rain-on-roof. Could anything be nicer than that? Oh rain, I do love you (when you aren't frizzing up my hair on the way to college).

4. Hot Chocolates
Oh my goodness the peppermint type from Starbucks makes my heart sing. I've always loved making my own however, and settling down with a good book. In the cupboard and fridge downstairs I have my all time favourite hot chocolate tools: Cadbury's cocoa, Gingerbread syrup, whipped cream and that delightful Starbucks caramel drizzle sauce. All of the calories, all of the fun.

5. My docs
This is the first Autumn that my violet Doc Martens have seen, and I swear that I can hear them squealing with joy at the thought of crunching through leaves. I've wanted a pair of these boots for years, and now that I finally own them, I plan on getting my wear out of them.

6. The countdown begins
You bet your cotton socks I'm a Christmas lover. And when I say that, I mean I've had a playlist since the first of September and have already bought a couple of gifts. Nothing excites me more than the festive joy at this time of year, and I wait all year to start baking batches of gingerbread stars whilst belting out Mariah Carey at the top of my lungs. I must stop talking about Christmas now, or I'll almost start crying with happiness like I did to Harry yesterday whilst describing my Christmas day routine.

7. All of the OOTDS
Beanies, jumper dresses, primark cosy tights. This is the season of solid OOTDs, where everyone can layer up so much that you could practically be wearing every brand available on ASOS all at once. I hate being cold almost as much as I hate being too hot, so I take it as my personal quest to find the warmest outfits possible.

8. The autumnal hand sanitizers
This may sound weird, but have you ever smelt the Bath&Body Works seasonal hand sanitizers? Give me all of them, please, thankyou kindly. My personal favourites are 'Autumn days', which kind of captures that crisp, sunny scent when you walk out of the house on an October Tuesday, or 'Iced Gingerbread', which just smells like something I would very much like to eat (are you sensing a theme with the Gingerbread here?)

9. Reading
I'm ALWAYS a bookworm, and it isn't dependant on the season, but for some reason I just enjoy it most in the colder months, with poolside reading in a close second. I like to get all my college work done pretty early in the evening, so I can relax and read a book by the fire, and lose myself in the characters. I'm reading 'My True Love Gave to Me' at the moment, which contains 12 short stories from the very best young adult authors. Nothing like a Christmas themed book to aid the countdown.

10. Wiping the cobwebs from the classic board games
Well, I don't particularly get excited about wiping cobwebs (spiders be gone), but the timeless favourites like Cluedo and Monopoly cause me to clench my fists with excitement. My family and friends are constantly dragged to the dining room table in the Winter to play a couple of rounds of Banagrams whilst we all sip from our signature mugs, and I find myself glancing around the table often, wondering how on Earth I got blessed with such lovely humans.

11. Hot Water Bottles
YES YES YES. Give me all of your warmth, you fuzzy pockets of portable sunshine. Getting into bed with a hot water bottle is one of life's simplest pleasures, and one that I enjoy very much.

12. Long Baths
I say this, but if I stay in longer than 15 minutes I am almost sure to spontaneously combust. Baths are the quickest way for me to relax, and I love to pop in a bath salt or oil to spice it up and feel the extra benefit. I haven't had a Lush bath bomb in aaaages, but I think I might head on in and pick up a few to take my bathing experience to the next level - sorry, that definitely sounded weird.

13. Walks in the Dark
I love it when the days lose light at like 5pm, and you can take a chilly walk on the beach with the moon making cute reflections on the water. Those are the kind of nights that make you appreciate living by the sea.

Writing this post has made me 100000000 times more excited for the fast approaching season, and I can't wait to share more Autumnal/Winter posts with you! What is your favourite thing about Autumn?
Stay beautiful!
Emily xo
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Sunday, 20 September 2015

I Wish I May, I Wish I Might

 
As of late I've been obsessing more and more over high end beauty and new make up looks - I've been experimenting with make up WAY more than I usually do. Since I'm sort of broke at the moment (just booked a trip to Amsterdam, holla for a dollar - well actually, a LOT more than a dollar) I don't have the funds to buy new clothes for OOTDs, so I'm embarking down the 'beauty' side of my brain to create a few different posts for you guys.  I've created a list of the make up products that I'm coveting at the moment - hope this gives you inspiration for your own wishlist!
 
Too Faced Pink Leopard Bronzer
How freaking pretty is this?! It's like a work of art! Two of my favourite things are bronzer and a lil splash of leopard print, so this item is perfect for me. Oh guys I literally want it so much, I'm getting all giddy just typing about it. Too Faced is a brand that I've never delved into before, but I've heard great things and I cannot resist beautiful packaging. I've had a love affair with Nars Laguna Bronzer since April, but it might be time to dive into new waters.
 
MAC Lipstick in 'Sin'
So I'm a typical blogger, obsessed with MAC lipsticks, sue me. I adore these products, and will gladly spend my £15.50 every single time. I currently own 'Spirit' and 'Mehr', which I've worn to death and am still not tired of. I've decided to purchase a bolder shade next, and Sin is a gorgeous dark brown/maroon that I know will tie in amazingly with autumnal outfits.
 
Benefit 'Watt's Up' Highlighter
Do you know how close I came to buying this gem at Duty Free? Answer: Extremely close. Like, in my hand at the till kind of close. Sadly, I wussed out last minute and am suffering severely from (non) buyers remorse. I love the look of this highlighter and have lusted over the metallic packaging for what feels like absolutely yonks. I need this in my life - simple as.
 
Urban Decay Smoky Palette
The Naked1 palette is my best friend for night's out, and I always try and create a smoky eye effect with the colours in the palette. Wait, I hear you say. Emily, hold right on up. You did know about the Naked palette specially equipped for smoky eyes didn't you? I did folks, I did (anyone who didn't must live under a rock) - and sadly I don't have it in my mitts yet. All in good time.
 
Too Faced 'Better Than Sex' Mascara
*Inwardly cringes at the name because I'm sickeningly British* This is a cult product I feel almost everyone has tried - bar me. I've even heard Taylor Swift uses it, and if any of you know me in the slightest, then you know that that means I have to try it out as well. The tube is pink, the brush looks divine...this is 100% on my Christmas list (never too early).
 
Zoeva Luxury Brush Set in 'Rose Gold'
I've never spent much money on brushes before, but since I'm practically beginning my path to adulthood I feel now is the right time to make a change. I've wanted this set of brushes for a looong time, pretty much just because of the cute case, the rose gold detailing and the fact that every man and his dog raves about them. If you want the end product to look good, you have to dedicate time to the tools.
 
Yep, there it is, my cute lil make up wishlist!
What are you wishing for?
Emily xoxo
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Wednesday, 16 September 2015

Cheerz!

Hey guys!
So I did actually have tomorrow's post all sorted out, but last minute I decided I wasn't happy with it (the life of a perfectionist is majorly irritating). The other day I got a package that I was really happy with, so I decided to review the brand and recommend it to you guys. In my #NWmeet goody bag I received a code to purchase a free 'Cheerz' box - which is essentially a cute box that contains 30 polaroids of your choice, with the option to caption each photo and make it personal. You can view the Cheerz website here.

 
I've tried a few polaroid companies before, but this one is by far my new favourite. Most sites send you huge, squareish polaroids, whereas these that you receive in the Cheer box are just a tiny bit larger than the instax mini size, perfect for pinning in your bedroom.
 
 
 
 
 

I think this box would make such a lovely gift for someone, as you could import photos from their instagram or facebook account and surprise them with a physical copy of some of their favourite photos! I personally will definitely use this company again, and I have my eye on a kit that you can order, complete with string and mini pegs to create a pinterest-y polaroid wall.
 
 
All in all, I would definitely give this brand a 10/10. It's one of my favourite freebies from the goodie bag, and so unexpected - please head over to the site and have a good mooch, I promise you won't regret it! I miss the days when all our photos were in physical copy, and in an age of selfies and digital images, its so nice to hold your memories in your hand again. I've got a scrapbook lying around that I'm going to fill with these polaroids, I'm so excited to start the project!
 
Have you ever used a polaroid printing service?
Emily xoxo


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Sunday, 13 September 2015

New Jewels From Clo Clo London// Collaboration*

Hey guys!
I am SO excited to write this blog post, since the other day I received a cute package through my letterbox, from Clo Clo London Jewellery (visit their site here.) Clo Clo is a fashion jewellery boutique based in London, offering high quality products to worldwide customers.

 
 
The necklace I picked to review is called Chesika, and is currently sold out, but there are so many beautiful necklaces that there's no need to worry about choice. The necklaces are all reasonably priced but don't hold back on quality, and the necklace is lightweight enough to not be a burden. I love the autumnal colours in Chesika, and recently bought a mustard coloured sweater that I know is going to match the necklace perfectly.
 
 
 
I want to put a disclaimer in this post to mention that I would never ever give a positive review about a company/brand that I didn't think deserved my support and positive feedback. My blog is so important to me, and I want my readers to respect it and know that all opinions are completely my own.
 
I'm extremely happy that my first (EVER omigod) collaboration is with Clo Clo, and I can't wait to order more pieces to jazz up my fall wardrobe. I would also like to mention how accurate the delivery service is, I was told my necklace would arrive in 5-7 working days and it was delivered on the morning of the 5th day. 
 
A million thankyous to Clo Clo for this opportunity, I am seriously loving the bling you sent me! I wore it out today and already have received compliments from friends, so its a winner all round.
 
Stay beautiful!
Emily xoxo 

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Wednesday, 9 September 2015

Urban Outfitters Retro Shirt

Any reader that's been with me for a while will know that my biggest weakness is Urban Outfitters. If I didn't have to be practical and boring I would spend every penny of my wages in there, but alas, I can only buy a few things every now and again. In spring I bought a TON of clothes, leading to an unfortunate buying ban that lasted the entire Summer. I recently broke the ban and bought a Cooperative Contrast Tile Ringer Top, which you can view on the UO website here. It's perfect for Sixth Form comfort, and I know I'll be getting my wear out of this one!


 
Also, you may notice (or you might not, am I being extremely self absorbed here?) that I got glasses! This pair is from Micheal Kors and at the moment I wear them about 50% of the time. Until the other week I never realised that anything was wrong with my eyesight - I thought no one else could read signs, or see the board at college without having to strain. It's weird to get used to my face with them, but hey ho, without them I'd be much worse off!
 

 
In this outfit I wore the shirt with my black high waisted skinnies from New Look, and my hunter green Converse. The pattern on the shirt kind of reminds me of Fila, the retro sports brand, would you agree?
 
What shop can you not stay out of?
(Also, please tell me if you want a separate post all about the glasses!)
Emily xoxo

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Monday, 7 September 2015

#NWmeet Goodies

Hey guys!
So today is the (as promised) #NWmeet goody bag post, with photos and brand names of everything I was so grateful to receive at the event. This is also an extra post for this week *drum roll*. I'm so pleased with all the freebies, especially since I know that everything will go to good use because I have a Mum and a Sister who are anxiously waiting to see what I gift them. I'm pretty sure my Dad has his eye on a couple of bits as well!

 
Normally you'd save the best until last, but I couldn't wait to showcase my new RocketAndRye Carnival Letter Light, in the shape of an E (obviously, since my name is Emily). I absolutely love it and have placed it on my bedside table alongside an autumnal candle. I was pleasantly surprised to find that it is battery powered, so there's no faffing about with wires! I've already had a close friend ask about this and where they can find it, so its clearly a popular item!
In the Raffle I won this set of 5 Smith & Cult nail polishes, in gorgeous shades. My sister recently started a little nail business, so I've given these to her for an exchange of a discount on nail treatments. (Apparently, I've been told by Rachel, my next two treatments are free!) I think I might ask her to do a guest review of these on my blog, if she's willing!
 
 
Each blogger got to choose a Girls On Film tee, which are so pretty and comfy - I chose mine in B&W, but there were also black and grey, and pink and white designs. It's baggy, which is how I like my t shirts, so this is perfect!
 


 

Lush kindly left us some samples after their demonstration, which was so lovely, and I'm so impressed that Katy and Sam got this amazing company on board with the event. I got samples of:
  • Mask of Magnaminty
  • Ultrabland
  • 9 to 5 cleanser
  • Imperialis
 
So, firstly in the main goody bag we got some nail and make up bits. One of the gifts I was most excited about was the Tarte 'Lights, Camera, Flashes' mascara which I've heard a lot of good things about. I'm hoping to try out and review this mascara for you all. I got another Smith&Cult nail polish, which I'm keeping for myself (my good sister deeds only run so far!) There were two pink lipsticks from Kiss Cosmetics and W7, a Flexible Color nail set from Orly, another coral nail polish from Morgan Taylor, and some Halloween Nail Stickers from HoobyNoo World.
 
 
I was really happy to see that a Crabtree&Evelyn handcream had been included, since its one of my Mums favourite brands - and this one smelt so nice! There was also a Phil Smith dry shampoo, an ARK face mask, an Alphah serum, a Napura shampoo sample, and a Gardeners Hand Healer hand cream.
 
 
Now for some random bits and bobs. We got a cute pencil and bag designed specifically for the meet - such a great addition to the experience! Some Caroline Gardner notebooks were included, which is perfect for bloggers! As well as those things I got a Tangle Angel mini keychain hairbrush, some Urban Beauty nail files, and a Rose &Grey pineapple shaped candle (SO ADORABLE).
 
 
Wow, I am getting weary now! In this section I got a sample of Hope&Glory coffee, a BeeGood cleanser, some Manuka Doctor samples, a Jones&Jones pocket mirror, a sample of WeAreTea peppermint tea, a cute soap sample (I struggled to find a link here, I'm so sorry!) and some Indian incense.
 
 
Lastly there were small samples from brands such as Egyptian Magic, Oribe, and LoveHoney!
 
Told you there were a lot of goodies! *heart eyes emoji*
I'm so grateful for every treat that a brand provided, and I know it will all go to good use. Which of the goodies is your favourite?
Thanks again Katy and Sam for organising a fab event,
Emily xoxo

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Sunday, 6 September 2015

My #NWmeet Experience!

 

Warning: This post is pretty darn photo heavy.
Let me start by saying that today has been one of best days I can remember for so many reasons, and one that I won't ever forget. Today I attended the #NWmeet blogger meet up, hosted by Katy and Sam, to raise money for The Recovery Bag Project. I never imagined last year, when I set up my blog as an escape from all of life's anxieties, that I would get the opportunity to go to an event sponsored by such great brands and meet so many amazing people. More than that, I could never have imagined being brave enough to embark on such an adventure alone, since I spend my days battling shy-ness.

The event was held in 'The Secret Warehouse' in Bank Hall, which was a beautiful venue, seemingly in the middle of nowhere. It remained a secret right up until the very last minute, since we were given a set of instructions to lead us there, and a password (Cactus) to get inside the building. On the outside, it looked like a random brick building - inside, it was a bloggers Wonderland. There was a gorgeous rooftop garden set up (perfect for a polaroid!) and a studio style venue room where the main meet up took place. When we first arrived we were given a W7 lipstick and made our mark on 'The Kissing Wall', which was such an original idea!


Katy and Sam arranged so many little activities for us to take part in, like guessing how many midget gems were in a jar to win a JonesandJones designer dress. We were also given a number on the way in (mine was 13) and entered a draw to win a cute piece of Disney Couture jewellery. There was a snack table FILLED with yummy goodies, such an Blk Water (such a strange concept!), Just Bee infused water, Propercorn, Green&Blacks chocolate, a bar from the Primal Pantry and an amazing little cupcake from The Cake Days - I hope I haven't forgotten any brands there!

 
 
 
There was a huge mirror, which made for some fun photo opportunities, and loads of props to aid us in taking some pretty funny photos. I met some amazing bloggers at the event, but I spent a good proportion of it talking to Lottie, Sarah and Sam, who were all event-newbies just like me. I was worried about being the only new one there, so it was lovely to meet girls in the exact same position as me. I've linked their blogs, so check them out!
 

 
 

 
We had a demonstration from Lush, which was exciting as it is a brand that I LOVE, and even received some samples! This Material Culture came in and showed us some of their beautiful jewellery - I'm particularly in love with the wire bracelets, so pretty. We received amazing goody bags (including one from Lush), a t shirt, and a personalised gift that I'm still in shock about! I'm going to do a separate blog post involving all of those fun goodies, so you'll have to check back tomorrow to see what I got!
 

 
All in all I had a fabulous day that I know I'll remember forever! I was SUPER anxious about going, especially considering that my blog isn't huge or well known, but I was shown yet again how kind and welcoming the blogging community is.
The biggest thankyous and hugs to Katy and Sam for organising a great event, I have no idea how you do it all but I'm forever grateful that you did!
Keep checking back for my goody bag post!
 
Have you ever been to a meet-up?
Stay beautiful!
Emily xoxo

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Wednesday, 2 September 2015

Back to College


Eugh. I can't believe I'm actually writing this post. Summer has flown by, and somehow I've arrived at the point where I have to return to college. I'm equal parts excited and deflated, because I've always been the girl that gets excited about a new pack of pens and spiral bound notebook. On the other hand, although I love learning, the forced nature of teaching and the modern teaching methods (I've literally had to do a relay race in one of my classes before) burden me and make me wish for a few more summer days doing nothing but Netflix.

The point of this post was to talk about the next academic year. I recently got my AS results, and even though they were satisfactory, I know I'm capable of more and that I let myself down slightly in the past year. I've always been a keen student, but I took my eye off the ball and focused on less important things. For that reason I'm planning to minimise distraction from my schoolwork, as this second year of sixth form is without a doubt my most challenging and important year of education so far. I still want to blog as much as possible, in fact I'm excited about my blog in a way I never have been before. More and more people are reading, and I'm attending my first blogger event in literally THREE days. I'm planning on updating the design of my blog, and I've written my first collaboration post with a brand that I love.

I don't want asmalldistraction to suffer in any way as a result of my schoolwork, I want it to continue to flourish. From now on, during term time I'm going to post on a Wednesday and a Sunday every week, with a surprise extra post or two dotted here and there. I've planned my posts all the way through to the end of September so there should be no trouble sticking to the plan, and I only hope that this year, with my determination and organisation, goes a little more down the right path. Hopefully this time next year I'll be preparing to go to my first choice uni, but nothing good comes without hard work!

Are you heading back to school?
Emily xoxo
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