Last year, I wrote a post where I reviewed my year, what I had achieved and what I had done throughout 2017. It’s one of my favourite posts I’ve ever written, and I thought I would do the same again this year. I also thought it would be pretty cool to see how my life has changed in comparison to last year too! I know I said last year that 2017 was big for me… but my gosh, 2018 has been even bigger.

January 2018

Eric and I celebrated 3 years together, doing what we do best… eating a buffet!

My Ulcerative Colitis was still flaring, and I was still steroid dependent, meaning every time the hospital tried to reduce my steroid dosage, my bowels flared right back up.

We had so much snow it actually felt like a proper Winter here in the UK!

February 2018

I experienced my first ever Cat Café, got bit by a cat, and bled all over, typical!

I qualified in Gel Polish application for manicures.

Eric and I had a proper date day in Durham, went sightseeing, and of course, ate a lot of food.

March 2018

I went on my first girls holiday to Magaluf for my friend’s hen party. It was SO much fun, despite being poorly.

April 2018

Eric and I went on our, what seems to be, an annual trip to the Lake District. This time we went to the South of the Lakes. We explored Kendal, Windermere, South Lakes Safari Zoo and The Lakes Aquarium.

I celebrated my 25th birthday with friends and family. We did an escape room, had a good meal, and a night out!

May 2018

A heatwave started here in the UK and we had the nicest Summer ever. I enjoyed beach trips, barbeques, long hikes, waterfalls and picnics. It really was the happiest Summer for me.

My blog turned 1 year old and I was on a blogger panel talking about writing blogs and making vlogs.

I went to see Thirty Seconds to Mars with my brother and it was so bloody incredible I cried.

June 2018

My consultant decided since my Colitis wasn’t improving, I needed to be moved onto a harsher medication which suppresses my immune system, called Azathioprine. But I needed to have vaccines before I started to make sure I’m as safe as possible.

Eric and I went to see Ed Sheeran and it was such a beautiful experience.

I managed to go the 10k walk for Crohn’s & Colitis UK instead of the 5k I did last year and we raised £175.


July 2018

My new medication was making me feel sick and nauseous every day, but my flare had reduced, so I kept pushing through.

Eric and I took part in Newcastle Pride, and I felt so proud to be part of the LGBT community and in a place where we’re far more accepting and understanding of different people.

My friend got married and I was a bridesmaid for the first time as an adult. It was such a gorgeous day.

August 2018

We celebrated Eric’s 27th Birthday with our closest friends.

Eric got a new job with a better wage and better prospects for his future. He’s now a Digital Content Executive.

September 2018

My body final went into REMISSION! Meaning I no longer have inflammation and ulceration in my colon, and I am symptom-free thanks to my medication. I’ll have to be on Azathioprine for life and be immunosuppressed, but it’s so worth it.

After a lot of research, planning and preparation… I started my own business as a Makeup Artist & Beautician!

October 2018

We celebrated our friend’s wedding where Eric was a groomsman. It was a stunning day.

I was lucky enough to celebrate my FAVOURITE holiday of all twice…. Halloween!

November 2018

Eric and I enjoyed Bonfire Night at the Whitley Bay Fireworks Display again.

My Seasonal Affective Disorder hit me hard after such a good summer, and my depression was making day to day life hard. I started a Behaviour Activation Course with Cognitive Behavioural Therapy.

I started making big changes in my life after realising some people aren’t friends, toxic relationships still exist, and that I need to start putting myself first more often.

December 2018

My business is making a profit for the first time since starting it!

It was a hard month with family issues, but we got through it and came out the other side happier.
I decided to put more effort into my YouTube channel and did Vlogmas.

I enjoyed so many festive activities like Beamish, Christmas Markets, Afternoon Tea, the Pantomime and Ice Skating.

I saw in the New Year with friends, feeling hopeful that 2019 will be my year the thrive. 

Living with Depression.

Some of you might have noticed I haven't been blogging as much as I used to. It's partly because I'm spending a lot of my energy on general life and when it comes to doing things I enjoy and my hobbies, I have no energy left. Some of it is down to struggling with depression, which I've been attending therapy for. Last night, when my brain was spiralling as I was trying to fall asleep, this idea came to me and I wanted to write it while it was fresh in my mind. So, here I am, at 2am, telling you how depression feels for me, in the hopes that more people can understand it.

Trigger Warning - if you struggle with depression, self-harm, or suicide, this may be triggering. 

My depression comes and goes. Sometimes I feel normal, and like I can do my normal day to day stuff. But, sometimes I feel so low, that I almost call in sick at life, not just work.

I start with

Thinking about how life isn't going as I planned.
I'm not achieving as much as I'd hope.
Comparing my achievements to others around me, or on social media.
Feeling sad and upset most days.
Feeling tearful or crying most days.
Little things make me more upset because I'm already feeling sad.

When I start to feel sad like this, my mind spirals even more. It doesn't help that I also have anxiety and I'm a chronic worrier so that makes things even worse for me. My brain almost goes into overdrive, and I start to notice little things that then become HUGE things, and overexaggerated by my mind.

I then

Can't sleep at night and struggle with insomnia.
Can't get up on a morning because I'm physically and mentally exhausted.
Little things like washing and moving become huge hurdles to get over.
So, I end up doing nothing and get bored.
I feel lonely because I don't get out as much.
I feel like I have no friends because I haven't spoken to humans in so long (just my dogs).

So, because I'm bored and lonely. It means my mind has more time to play with my emotions. Of course, this means things get even worse for me. I start to be self-critical because depression makes you blame yourself for everything. It must be me? There must be something wrong with me, right?

I feel isolated.
I feel alone.
I feel miserable.
I feel hopeless.
I feel unlikeable.
I feel depressed.

Once you get so low, it's hard to get back up. Every little thing you do feels like so much effort that it's easier to just... not do it? It's easier to avoid the depressed feelings than it is to get out of bed.

I've been attending a Behaviour Activation course with Cognitive Behavioural Therapy for over a month now. I can see where I spiral and I'm working hard to replace my behaviours that encourage my depression to fester with more positive ones that will reinforce more helpful behaviours. It's still hard. It's still a struggle to deal with day to day.

All while this is happening, no one notices. No one sees my struggle unless I tell them, because online I post happy, positive photos. If people ask how I am, I say "I'm fine" and crack out a smile. I'm writing this mainly as a form of therapy for myself, to get all my emotions out. But, also to show people that it doesn't matter how happy or together you look, you never know what someone is struggling with behind closed doors. More people struggle with poor mental health than you realise.

If you resonate with this post, or know someone who does - here's some helplines. Please, reach out.

Samaritans: 116 123
Mind: 0300 123 3393
CALM: 0800 585858 (for men)
Childline: 0800 1111 (for under 19s)
The Silver Line: 0800 4708090 (for the elderly)

If you are in a crisis and you are in danger call 999.

Fenty Pro Filt'r Foundation Review

Wow, can you believe it’s November already?! After my Halloweek makeup blogs, I took a short break from blogging; But I’m back today with a review of the Fenty Pro Filt’r Foundation, since we all love a good old review!

Fenty is a brand created by Rihanna, and it’s aimed for all skin types and tones as she felt not all women were included for other makeup brands. Because of this, the range of shades for the Fenty Pro Filt’r Foundation is astounding. There are a whopping 40 shades from very fair to much darker tones that other brands simply don’t offer.

I’ve been trialling this foundation for a little over a month, and no word of a lie, I loved it so much I even decided to add it to my professional makeup kit for weddings. This foundation is amazing.
I tend to use the shade 160 but can also get away with 140, or even 180 if I have a little fake tan on. I’m usually one of the lightest shades in most other foundations but there are 6 shades lighter than what I am, and that is just brilliant.

I find it applies better with a damp makeup sponge (I use Real Techniques), and what I like the most is the finish. It blends very nicely and is a good medium coverage. It’s also buildable, so when I want a heavier, more full coverage look, I can add a second layer if I want to.

Fenty claim the foundation is a demi-matte, but I personally find it a bit dewier that a demi-matte, but not completely. I find it a little hard to explain! I have quite oily skin, so it’s certainly not matte, but I quite like it. It makes it look and feel more natural and breathable.

I’ve also used it on different skin types for work now, and it seems to suit both oily skin and dry skin. I wouldn’t recommend it if you have severe dry skin conditions, like Eczema or very flaky skin as it may cling… but for regular dry skin, it still worked really well.

It’s long lasting, and I’ve found it’s lasted on my oily skin for a good 10-15 hours. Which is perfect if you’re going out for the day or attending occasions and events. It doesn't separate, or accentuate my pores like other foundations have done in the past. 

The foundation costs £26 in the UK and I’ve found the best place to buy it is from Harvey’s online. The downside is that it’s harder to get a hold of in the UK, which means you can’t pop to your local department store to have the colour matched. If you’re deciding between 2 different colours, I’d recommend going for the lighter one as it does slightly oxidise after application.

It’s slightly cheaper than other high-end foundations, and for the price, I’d certainly say it’s worth it. I’ve really enjoyed using it, and this post isn’t sponsored (I wish!), I just genuinely loved this foundation.

To top it all off, if you didn’t think it could get any better, Fenty’s foundation is cruelty-free and vegan-friendly. I mean, how can a foundation be this perfect. I’m so glad I tried it, I’ll probably be using it for a very long time now!