Lifestyle · Manchester · Music

Finishing First Year of University 2.0

Okay so I might not have exactly passed yet – I received 34% on an exam I took before summer so that’s getting sorted in a couple months – but my first year of university is almost (not officially) over!

It has been a weird old year in Manchester and spellbindingly diverse in comparison to last year.  Innocent me taking on the world in the heart of Manchester with some acquaintances that would come to me when they fancied a night out (and vice versa) or wanted to lend some money (not so vice versa). Surprisingly, none of these people cast a shadow over my life anymore.

I also believed I was embarking on an odyssey where student life was concerned – safe to say I dropped out of my Music Journalism degree at the British and Irish Institute of Modern Music as soon as I realised this was a no-go area.  Best decision of my life to change courses to attend The University of Salford? I reckon so.

The 2016/17 academic year has firstly made me question the girl I was becoming.  I realised at The Warehouse Project in October 2016 that I needed to quit the life I had led for the past year.  Did I really want to go stand in a sweaty room of eighteen-year-olds, bouncing around to the ridiculously horrendous David Rodigan, pretending I was having a good time?  Did I really want to be downing double vodka oranges every other night in G-A-Y and stumbling home at 6 am? It just wasn’t me anymore and that was a really scary realisation.  I was the party girl and all of a sudden POOF.  Vanished. Weird, huh?

This idea that I was evolving was totally cemented in when I visited my best friend Kate Shepherd at York St. John’s University, and we attended at University of York student night at Fibbers… Never, ever again am I stepping foot in Fibbers. Give me a chilled night in Manchester’s Jimmy’s or Cane and Grain any day of the week. EVEN Soup Kitchen on a Saturday night!

I have sadly come to terms that I just do not like the partying student lifestyle anymore.  That might make me beige by your book but for me, it is probably my greatest epiphany of this academic year.

So once I stopped wishing DJ EZ was at South Nightclub every weekend I did not really replace this musical desire with anything.  The Libertines said “If  you’ve lost your faith in love and music oh the end won’t be long”.  And honestly music was lost on me.  I did not care.  I did not see a live band from November-May and I genuinely just was not interested.  I had given up hopes of writing about music and I was seriously at a loss.  What changed?  I decided I needed a hobby other than the gym, knew I was good at writing so started again.  Seriously as simple as that… I just did not want to run on a treadmill anymore.

In December I started writing for Gigslutz.co.uk again after taking a year hiatus to experiment with other things.  IE. Not do anything and was wasting away in my bedroom.  I gained the position of News Assistant and was then sent to Liverpool Sound City and Isle Of Wight Festival to become a roving festival reporter for the weekend.  As soon as I stepped through the gates of Sound City I knew this was what I was missing.  The hunger for live music, to discover the next-big-thing, to interview none other than Metronomy frontman, Joseph Mount – this is the gal I was.  I just lost her for a couple years.  Shout out to the Gigslutz team for allowing me back into your world so kindly – Mari Lane, Steve Aston, Becky Rogers and Melissa Svenson (who does a pretty cool podcast which can be listened to here https://soundcloud.com/modernstrife), you absolute angels.

So I rediscovered my passion in life, I ditched the nights out blah blah that is all well and dandy Ella but what did you achieve this year? Power over my own life.  I learnt to say “no” when I did not want a beer (I went to Funkademia at Mint Lounge and was buying rounds of lemonade and water for me and one of my favourite chefs at work AND was home by 2 am, sober.  It was a proud moment.)  I learnt to say “fuck it” when an opportunity I was desperate for popped up.   I learnt that my life was mine and the people that filled it was the people of my choice.  I learnt that I am twenty years old – I have plenty of time in my life to mess up one night and spend the next day lying in bed eating cold pizza from the night before, but right now, at twenty, all I want to do is make an impact in the music industry.

This year at university has taught me to be determined and I will get there, eventually.  I now know not to give up. Cliche? Cheesy?  Embarrassed?  All three, yes probably.

I have also managed to take my blog a hell of a lot more seriously this year.  I am not posting as much as I would like (hello life, nice to see you throwing things at me as always) but it has taken a serious turn in the upward direction. We celebrated our third Cigarette Sounds birthday in April of this year and we are definitely preparing for the milestone of the fourth.  There is no slowing down with this baby, we are speeding up in every single way possible.  Hopefully, soon I shall be able to settle down into a nice lil’ routine of blogging a few times a week, rather than a couple times a month… Here is to hoping. I do need  graphic designer to make Cigarette Sounds a bit more personal so if you are free, give me a holler.

Speaking of blogs, one of my gal pals from work, who also happens to be a sick manager too (Em definitely paid me to say that) Emily Brooks, started a blog this year after she was toying with the idea for so long.  It is a good little start-up, you should check it out at small-thoughts.com

Kate’s sister, Laura Shepherd, also started a blog earlier this year called My Northern Rose Blog which I heavily enjoy reading. It is extremely aesthetically pleasing and very satisfying, I lav it a lot, check it out here – www.mynorthernroseblog.com.

 

I do of course realise that I haven’t ACTUALLY talked about university throughout this entire piece and this is because honestly, this year is first year this year is the year you make mistakes and learn basics and NEXT year is the academic year which counts.  So eyes peeled for when I start to take education seriously… 

Shout out to all the girls in the industry who are killing it.  This time next year, I hope to be as close to my goals as you are.

ES X

Music

Repetitive Rhythms: Songs of the Week (19-25 June 2017)

Blackwaters – Down

The Luka State – 30 Minute Break
* This song is actually from 2014 (late to The Luka State-party) but since I discovered them at Isle Of Wight Festival 2017 this track has been on R E P E A T

The Horrors – Machine

Taylor Swift – Better Than Revenge

*Taylor Swift putting her entire discography back on Spotify is probably my worst/best nightmare, ever.  Now, go in the corner and think about what you did to me, Spotify.

Liam Gallagher – Wall of Glass

Touts – Political People

*Since I went to Liverpool Sound City I have been o-b-s-e-s-s-e-d with these three lads.  Phil Taggert’s one-to-watch, Touts have got it seriously going on.  If you’re Manchester-based, they’re performing at Gorilla with Proletariat on July 7. Get on this tickets now.

BETSY – Little White Lies

*A concoction of Clare Maguire and Cher hurt nobody, did it?  BETSY still remains one of my favourite rising females in the pop world, and ‘Little White Lies’ seriously does not disappoint.

The Pale White – Turn It Around
* Any band with a decent setup, raucous tunes AND from my hometown of Newcastle-Upon-Tyne gets a green tick against them where I’m concerned. I am utterly in awe of these lads, and you should be too.

Wolf Alice – Yuk Foo

RAY BLK – Doing Me
*Girl making me feel good for eating bagels in lounge pants and binge-watching past Smiths concerts instead of going out in the world and specialising in making friends… That is what I tell myself anyways

Manchester · Music

Live: Liam Gallagher @ The O2 Ritz, Manchester 2017

“This is another new one, sorry about that” Liam Gallagher, Ex-Beady Eye frontman and Ex-Oasis star sniggers to the crowd of the O2 Ritz in Manchester.  He shrugs his shoulders in his Pretty Green mac, wipes the sweat from his forehead and launches into a solo song of his.  The crowd do not appreciate Gallagher’s new music as much as the old, but if you bought a ticket to hear ‘Wonderwall’ and ‘Champagne Supernova’ then you should’ve done yourself a favour and quit while you were ahead.  He isn’t resurrecting Oasis; he’s paving the way on his own.

Gallagher’s first solo-outing showcased his voice in its prime.  Gone is the wheezing, the rasping and general flat tone.  Replacing poor is flawless.  Chugging water on stage, you can see the concentration spread across Gallagher’s face and hear the rejuvenated voice echoing from his lungs.  Heavy, rich and blossoming – this is the second coming, as The Stone Roses said.

Opening with Oasis classics ‘Rock N Roll Star’ followed by ‘Morning Glory’, Gallagher gently slides into his comfort zone, before blasting out his first ever solo single – ‘Wall Of Glass’. “I don’t mean to be unkind/but I’ll see what’s in your mind” Gallagher sings perfectly in tune.  With no fault, LG looks at ease on stage as he peers out into the crowd.

Whoops, and hollers followed by nodding heads and raised arms greet ‘Wall Of Glass’.  Ties are cut from both of Gallagher’s former bands as the song nears its death-defying end and we begin to doubt ourselves and our idea of Oasis.  Because really, hasn’t Liam Gallagher always been a solo artist in his own right?  He’s always been the star of the show; we just haven’t needed to notice until now.

His new songs pack punches and show that he’s working with a top production and songwriting teams.  It doesn’t matter that LG might not be writing the tunes, his direction, his voice and his stage presence is what matter.

Ending on a high, Gallagher brings out Bonehead from the guestlist balcony area to play the guitar for him like the old days.  The lights go dim and the crowd hound for more.  Gallagher knows how to play the crowd, feed them what they want and then leave them hanging on for more.  He swaggers back on stage with pure courage and commitment before launching into an acoustic version of ‘Live Forever’.  Acoustic because, apart from a shaker, the only sound resonating from the stage is Gallagher’s voice.  It is simply breathtaking: a moving spectacle.

Although a girl shouts “play ‘Wonderwall’”, but honestly, we don’t want him to.  As a collective crowd, we’ve realised that Liam Gallagher will always be Oasis and will always play Oasis – but he’s Liam Gallagher, solo artist.  Tonight has cemented the future.

Ella Scott
@ellalascott

Lifestyle · Travel

A stylish stay with Ibis: Liverpool

If you know me then you know I’m all about last minute plans, usually because I always leave things to the very possible last second to organise. So, on Sunday morning when I realised I needed somewhere to live temporarily post-Liverpool Sound City, I quickly jumped on the internet and luckily discovered a twin room in the beautiful Ibis Styles Hotel on Dale Street, Liverpool.  If like me, you’re one for simple quirkiness and aren’t afraid of swapping a traditional English breakfast for granola, brie and more croissants than you could shake a stick at – then look no further!


The Ibis Styles Hotel is located in the commercial district of Liverpool, near the courts and roughly a ten-minute walk to infamous Albert Dock and Beatles Story.  Branded as ‘the hotel that sings’, every room is ‘musically themed’, meaning it has the essence of The Beatles plastered all over it.  Whether it’s from the subtle psychedelic carpets, spiralling song lyrics or simply a pop of colour splattered across the room – the music of the legendary band is seriously alive in this hotel.

Walking into the hotel is different.  You are greeted by a colourful chill-out area and a bar.  It is 2 pm and there is no bartender… Where is the front desk?  The Styles hotel has decided to drop the formalities, the pay-at-the-desk and the awkward reception check-out conversation.  This is the internet era and when booking your hotel, an automatic check-in is applied (if you want of course.)  You just need to find a lovely staff member who swipes your paying card for security reasons, gives you your room key and sends you on your way.

The lifts are card-automated – so if you’re not staying at the hotel you’re not using the lift to get up to the rooms.  This idea allows you to feel fully secured and extremely safe, especially when you are staying at the hotel alone like I was.


I was designated Room 501, and it was so refreshingly lovely!  The room in all consisted of two extremely soft twin beds, with unbleached sheets; a desk area for working if you are on business or have some rambling thoughts you need to write down; a wall mounted TV; a wardrobe filled with complimentary coffee, tea and a hairdryer; a gorgeously clean bathroom fitted with two towels and shampoo/body wash and two MASSIVE mirrors, perfect for selfies.


Adorning the bathroom door was a swirl of the word ‘road’ in various different languages such as Spanish and German, as well as along the back wall next to the beds in a wavy fashion.  See pictures for a clearer understanding.

The room was immaculately clean, safe, tidy and friendly.  The greyscale theme with a pop of pink and blue carpeting was seriously inviting as well as extremely calming.  There were no garish colours nor was there anything causing an eye-sore.  I loved the room so much that I rank it highly as one of the best rooms I’ve stayed in for a   l o n g time.


On my way into the hotel after the festival, I was kindly reminded that breakfast was being served from six am until half 11, due to it being a bank holiday weekend. HELLO LIE IN.  At about half nine I made my way downstairs to the bar area, where a continental feast was put on.


In kooky glass, jugs were every juice option under the sun: apple, pineapple, orange and cranberry just to name a few, shots of what looked like tomato juice? (I was far too scared to try) and alongside these the largest bowl of bananas I’ve ever seen.  Moving across there was rows of soft granola and natural greek yoghurt in v. cute jars, a selection of vegetables (cucumbers and tomatoes sliced two ways), ham and pastrami and the largest cheeseboard in the world.


I am trying slowly and surely to be dairy free, but in situations like this, where there are thirty slices of soft, creamy brie piled high on a wooden board – it would be rude to say no, right?  I died and went to cheese heaven.  Future Ella, please don’t be disappointed in me.

A selection of slices of bread and a basket of croissants was also on offer.  I lost count of how many croissants I managed to dunk into my three (!!) lattes and scoff into my mouth.  As the saying goes, when in Liverpool…Right?


After I had doubled my weight in the food I edged my way back up to my hotel room, packed up my belongings and headed downstairs for check out.  Simple and effective, I again found one of the staff members and handed her my room key.  A couple hours later I received a confirmation text saying I had been successfully checked out. I liked this very much as it felt as if I was personally being thanked by the company for staying.  So here I am, returning that thanks.

Fast service, friendly and affordable for a hotel of such fantastic description – if you ever need somewhere to stay in Liverpool I would highly recommend the Ibis Styles Hotel on Dale Street.  I’m now itching to get travelling and find out what the rest of the Ibis Styles Hotels are like across Europe?  Please give me recommendations for any that you’ve stayed in!

See you soon, world,

Ella Scott
@ellalascott

Music

Liverpool Sound City 2017

In brutal honesty, before now, there has not been anything about a festival that isn’t set in a field that would appeal to me.  Why would I want to sit and eat cheesy chips and gravy on hard gravel?  Why would I want to be able to walk from a centre of town to a festival in ten minutes flat? Isn’t that the point of a live music celebration – emerging yourself into the unknown whirlwind and trap yourself in a bubble of euphoria, nowhere near civilisation? Think again, Liverpool Sound City is going to rejuvenate and regenerate your festival ideas.

What I’ve learnt from my time at Sound City is that you don’t need the grass, you don’t need the ‘traditional festival atmosphere’ (IE. The mud dripping from your face or the guy next to your tent having a wee on your said tent… Fun, right?) and you especially don’t need something as dull as a mainstream chart-topper headlining the main stage (Indie 2012 will do instead).  Give me culture. Give me something that is going to go down in the history of my mind.  Sound City, you’re seriously my saving grace.

Here are my Top 5 attributes from this year’s edition of the fest:

 

5.  T H E   T O I L E T S   H A D   T O I L E T   R O L L 

This one isn’t a joke and yeah, you did read it right – every time I had to nip to the loo (this was quite often as I was downing pints of Peroni as if it were apple juice) every toilet would be immaculate and topped up with three toilet rolls. THREE. I’m used to the portable toilets of T in The Park and seriously if you know, then you know.  In my book, it’s all part and parcel of the festival experience, but it was lush for once to not worry about getting poo smeared up my leg. Yummy.

 

4.  W A L K   T H I S   W A Y

Sounds weird doesn’t it, that being able to walk from one side of a festival in under 3 minutes has made it on my best attributes of Sound City.  But, there’s nothing worse than having to speedily hurry through a swarm of bodies, pelting themselves at you, while you attempt to fish out your favourite band in the smallest tent on site.  Inevitably, by travelling you’ve essentially missed the crucial song you wanted to hear: ultimate fail.  Give up now.

This year’s Sound City site was so compact however, that you could casually stroll from Tim Peaks’ Diner over to the main stage and loop around to the Pirate Stage in essentially five minutes flat.  There are of course serious cons to a small site though, The Golden Age TV’s set on The Cavern Club stage was totally washed out due to Generation taking over The Baltic tent, but it also has some serious time-saving-band-seeing perks, too.

3.  S T U D E N T S   T A K E   O V E R   T H E   C A V E R N   C L U B   S T A G E

Sound City (for the most part) celebrates new and diverse music coming from Liverpool and surrounding areas.  The Cavern Club stage at this year’s event had some of the freshest / youngest bands and artists who are studying towards a degree at Edge Hill University, Leeds College of Music and the British Institution of Modern Music (BIMM).  The latter, BIMM is where I studied towards a Music Journalism degree, last year.  My time at BIMM will always hold sickly sweet memories for me and I will always champion anybody who has risen from the ashes and nabbed their place in the limelight.

One of the BIMM bands I managed to catch this weekend were Crimsons.  Almost Nick Cave-esq where their dark sound is concerned and a look that was rivalled by no other – Crimsons are simply sublime and it’s refreshing that something so poignant has come from BIMM.

This should’ve just been a point dedicated to Crimsons really… Next time.

2.  P E R S E V E R A N C E   O F   S O U N D   C I T I Z E N S

Let’s not lie; on the Saturday of Liverpool Sound City 2017, the weather was atrocious.   The sky was spitting during The Kills, eventually escalating into torrential rain throughout the entirety of Metronomy’s headline set.  Fickle Friends’ performance was shrouded by a cloak of swarming gravel/sand and you couldn’t squeeze any more people into Peaches’ tent due of the brewing stormy night ahead… Also, Peaches is Peaches, so it was never going to be empty, was it?

However, it’s seriously refreshing that even at an inner-city festival, where you can hop on a free shuttle bus to take you back to your cosy hotel room, that the punters of Sound City persevered and would not let a lil’ bit of chilly rain ruin their night.  Granted, Metronomy’s crowd was partly sparse but those hundreds of people who danced in the moonlight – good on ya’, you did us all proud!

1.  M U S I C   M A K E S   T H E   P E O P L E   C O M E   T O G E T H E R

Sound City is a music festival.  There isn’t much alternative, like at Isle Of Wight of Latitude festivals, where you can wander down to a river and see a ballet, or hop into a world of queer comedy.  Sound City is purely for the music and the people of the North West who love music.  This is what makes the festival so good.  Across the weekend, some breathtaking bands played: both archaic and fresh-faced artists took to the stage to produce phenomenal performances.

Below, I’ve compiled some of the top bands I have seen personally over the weekend so you can dive into some golden oldies and maybe discover your new favourite band like I have during the span of Sound City.

 

So, that was my roundup of the 2017 edition of Liverpool Sound City.  Did you go yourself?  If so, what did you think of it?  And if you didn’t, you better be getting a ticket for next year’s events!

Ella Scott
@ellalascott

 

Food · Manchester

Fancy a Brooklyn Brewery Beer?

 

 

If somebody says to you “give up your night to drink free Brooklyn Brewery beer” you might be a bit sceptical.  You’ve had the standard Brooklyn lagar in a can or a glass bottle, and the dark larger may not have tantalised your taste buds.

I am exactly the same.

If that is the case for you too, then do not wipe Brooklyn Brewery off of your taste pallet just yet.  Whether it is for: sitting down with your mates for a beverage or ten, having that ‘one last drink’ as you throw yourself face-first into a ham and pineapple pizza (pineapple DOES go on pizza for the record) at an after party or just need that something to help you unwind after a stressful day of doing nothing – Brooklyn Brewery has the answers.

At the end of April 2017, employees of Yard & Coop were luckily invited to an intimate tasting session with Brooklyn Brewery representative, Chris Moore.  At the meeting Moore delved into the rich history of Brooklyn Brewery, explaining that the company’s founder had escaped death several times in various countries before the venture was even a thought and that when the New York Mafia come knocking you seriously have to show them who is the boss.

Alongside swerving through the archaic foundations of Brooklyn, Moore had brought us a selection of the brewery’s finest delights to sample.

Now, imagine: a variety of bar tenders, the front of house staff and managers on their day off, swarming around a table filled with sweet treats and alcoholic elixir’s we have never tasted before.  Win, win – a recipe made in heaven.  Alcoholic beverages are one of our main passions in life.  We are not working in a Northern Quarter bar and eatery for any old reason, you know.  We like to drink.

One of the first beers Moore pulled from his box of tricks is well-known and celebrated Brooklyn Lager’.  With a surprisingly fresh bitterness hugged by a floral and dry taste, the Lager is the Brooklyn Brewery signature.  You can find it throughout bars across the country and, if you do not spot anything you know on a menu – sure enough hiding in there somewhere will always be Brooklyn Lager.  A safe bet for a craft beer.

The Brooklyn Lager won’t appeal to everybody, however.  With its distinct taste and dark colour, it carries the same motto as Marmite – you are either going to love it like the feeling of having a full fridge at Christmas or hate it like your housemate using up your milk.  So if that is the case, then Brooklyn is not for you, right?

WRONG.  Oh, so wrong.

 Moore pulled a variety of bottled beers and cans out of his bag including:

  • Brooklyn Scorcher IPA
  • Brooklyn Brown Ale (my favourite of all the beverages)
  • Brooklyn American Ale
  • Brooklyn Sorachi Ace
  • Brooklyn East India Pale Ale

If you are an avid New World Trading Co. fan (IE. The Botanist, The Oast House, MCR Smugglers Cove, LIV) then you would have seen the Brooklyn East India Pale Ale stacked high on its ventures shelves.  The only Brooklyn Brewery offerings that was brought to the event in a can, the pale ale packed a serious punch – it is unbelievably juicy, thirst-quenching and ripe, but it is not for the faint hearted!

An all-rounder which would be perfect for those after-the-night-out drinks (as I previously mentioned) is the Brooklyn American Ale.  Unlike most heavy ales which you have to nurse your body to be in the mood for, this 4.5% ale is completely different.  Light-tasting, gentle and easy-going with crisp tones: the Brooklyn American Ale is perfectly paired with any food flavour, and makes drinking to drink fun.  You do not have to get drunk to have fun drinking (I definitely need to remember this mantra…)

 

The main attraction, for me however, came surprisingly in the form of the Brooklyn Brown Ale.  Now, I am a Geordie girl.  And other than that MTV show what are Geordies famous for?  Newcastle Brown Ale.  What does not taste nice?  Newcastle Brown Ale.  What has changed my complete perspective on brown ale (maybe) forever?  Brooklyn Brown Ale.

Nicknamed ‘the roasty’, this Brooklyn offering incorporates its British heritage with an American twist.  Brown ale that boasts six malts caressing layers of sweet toasted caramel, bitter cocoa and strong coffee – all blended together to create this rich and enticing beer.  The sheer volume of substance in the ale warms the pit of your stomach, changing your idea that Brown Ale is not just something you have to snidely avoid, even if it is on offer in a night club’s fridge.  42nd Street in Manchester, I’m looking at you.

Riveting, inviting and seriously tasty: if I can urge you to do anything this month, it is try to nab yourself a taste of Brooklyn.  Do not play it safe – go big.  If the American Ale sounds your thing then take the plunge or if you want something a little bit different to nag your mates about buying, go for the East India Pale Ale.

Whatever your tipple, make it Brooklyn Brewery.

Ella Scott
@ellalascott

Lifestyle

New Year’s Resolutions: 5 Months Later

Remember those pesky New Year’s Resolutions you made on January 1 which you PROMISED you would stick to this year?  ‘This year will be different, this is the year I accomplish blankety blank blank blank’.  Remember? Me neither, however, I put mine in writing for the world to see… Bad move, Ella – now you gotta’ look at what you promised yourself and comment on your progress….

 

  • Stop being sad about losing mates

Welcome to 2017, the year I genuinely entered with friends I could count on one of my hands.  Fast forward five months and I have seriously planted some firm roots in some real good rays of sunshine.  No more negativity is coursing through my veins about not having many mates to go out and enjoy the sun with, go drinking with, cry on their shoulders when I have failed an assignment with.

I’ve grown closer (if that’s even possible) to my day-one-until-forever best friends, made some serious gal and guy pals for whom I will hold close to my heart for a considerably long time and have also rekindled friendships with some of those who fell out of my life in the last couple of years, too.  I’m still bad at keeping on top of messaging people and staying in contact but I’m working on it.

I no longer feel awful about losing my friends… Why should I when I have picked up some extraordinary faces while cleansing the air of those who I no longer fit in with?  Life is about being happy, it isn’t about getting upset over spillage.

 

  • Start going out sober

Where once I was a double gin, lime and lemonade with a side of jagerbomb girl… I’ve turned into one of those ‘prossecco girls’.  “You know the type, loud as a motorbike but wouldn’t bust a grape in a fruit fight”…. Right, Jay-Z?

I still love a pint or seven.  I still love going out, I now love chatting nonsense to my best mates, sipping on something bubbly, and I still enjoy getting hammered and eating cheesy chips and gravy at 4am.  I’m not very good at going out sober because when the elixir of fun hits my lips it’s a WHOLE new level.  I just love it. However, if I don’t want a drink, I’m learning that I do not have to say yes to the strongest substance possible.

I went to Crazy Pedro’s in the NQ the other night and drank Hooch Hoola. Honestly, if you haven’t tried this sweet alcoholic beverage then you are missing out  B I G  style.  I was still having alcohol, I was still drinking, I was still joining in… But I wasn’t downing vodka or sloshing tequila slammers and I didn’t feel like I was drinking to get drunk.  A serious rarity.

I went to York to see my best friend in the world a couple weeks ago and essentially had a sober night out in Fibbers.  (Those of you who know the York nightlife will feel outraged that I and Kate went to Fibbers on 3 cans of beer each at 12 pm.) And earlier last week, my work do ended up with me having all the fun in the world on 2 pints of Paulaner.

None of these nights out have been 100% sober, but I’m working on it.  Every step is one in the right direction.  I still have seven months to master the idea of a ‘sober night out’.

 

  • Experience live music once a week

Fail.  Complete fail.  I haven’t seen a band or an artist live this year.  Slap on the wrist, Ella.

However, I do have real plans to attend Liverpool Sound City, report on Isle Of Wight Festival for Gigslutz and am seriously debating whether to splurge on a Reading & Leeds Festival day ticket just to see my boys, Kasabian.  Watch this space.  But for now, FAIL.

Note: I just found this song on Youtube from the My Little Pony series and my god, this is my new jam.

 

  • Gimmie a little sparkle!

You can see from my Amie Skincare post, that the first part of my ‘self-love and self-care’ 2017 New Year’s Resolution has been successful.  They say don’t fix something that isn’t broken (my skin is currently amazing) but I want to add the likes of toner, eye cream and a heavier moisturiser into my routine.  If you have ANY recommendations please, please send them my way!

I’m eating way healthier (with a lot of pizza-and-chocolate-bar shaped bumps along the way) I’ve lost weight, I’ve stopped drinking as much, I’m treating myself (TREAT YO’ SELF) to things rather than food and basically, I couldn’t be happier!

YAY ME, YAY ME, YAY ME!

  • If you want it, get it

After I wrote my A Minor Depressive Episode blog post, I went out and bought a truckload of things that I just NEEDED.  A Burts Bees conditioner, toilet wipes, coffee and hair mousse are just some of the things I went out and spent my hard-earned dolla’ on.  They’re not the most exciting things ever but I bloody needed them and I was so thankful to myself, too.  You need to love yourself.

The idea of ‘nothing is getting half-arsed in 2017’ is a big one.  I’m still drowning at university (will I ever not be?), I’m still not reading enough and I’m still not putting 100% into everything I do.  But Jesus, I’m really trying!

Something which is a serious want of mine is a body and a bloody fantastic body at that.  At the moment I’ve got an alright body.  I have good boobs, and nice hair, and a good waist.  However, I also have chunky thighs, cellulite on the back of said-chunky thighs and hips which I frankly just hate.  SO ELLA, get yo’ ass to the gym.

There are parts that I love about myself, and parts that I despise, and ‘not half-assing anything in 2017’ applies to the idea that I have to love every part and every inch of my body.  Not just loving my boobies and then hating my bum.  All of it, you hear me?  You need to know you’re the bee’s knees, Ella, go do some squats and feel GOOD.

 

 

  • Stick in at University

Yeah… I’m just going to leave this one here.  I have exams which I am going to prepare for with the best of my ability and come September I am really going to nail the second year.

She says now….

 

So as a recap: I’m doing awful on the live music and university front but other than that, I’m working really hard to be as good as gold.  Well on my way to saying “2017? Bitch, I did that so well”.   How are your New Years Resolutions going?  We’re only five months in, a lot can happen in the rest!

 

E x