26 December 2017

A Year in Review

I can't believe 2017 has already come to an end. It has honestly been one of the best and most bizarre years of my life so far.

It didn't begin so well - on the 1st of January I was in the airport trying my best to hide my tears as I went through customs. I was leaving my parents, friends, animals, my home in France once again, not knowing what I was going to do in the future. Growing up in another country has it's perks of course, but I honestly find myself in tears every single time I visit, knowing very well I'll soon be leaving it all again.

Looking back at the start of the year, I feel like I didn't do anything very memorable until Spring. I was still very much worrying about my future, and when I think back on it, all I can see is a blur of office work and horrid commutes. I was working part-time, still under a cloud of worry about what I was to do next.
On the blogging spectrum, things were looking up: we were gifted a new camera lens by our parents for Christmas, which lead to some exciting new fashion content on our little blog. We were finally moving forward with our photography, and we had a lot of fun experimenting with it.

& so the Winter months passed quietly, and we came into Spring. Trees and flowers were about to bloom again, and sure enough, my life was about to get more interesting.

In March, I began to really appreciate the situation I was in: I was able to spend more time with my family and friends based in the UK. I had the freedom of London 30 minutes from my doorstep, and I was offered a full-time position at work. That moment ultimately shaped the rest of my year, as the 5 months that followed were spent planning a trip of a lifetime to New Zealand. My 22nd Birthday was also coming up, and that in itself felt quite significant.

A couple of days before our 22nd, we ventured into London once more to shoot some outfit pictures. I fell more deeply in love with every single visit. With it's History, Culture, hidden little treasures. There is so much to see and experience, and I hope I never get bored of it.
My confidence grew immensely during my time here: inspired by the art scene and the huge quantity of street style inspo, I began to see my style change ever so slightly.
The 'Something Different' post from March is one of my favourites, as it reflects this new found confidence London inspired in me.

This post was closely followed by another favourite, also one of the TTW's most popular posts: Blogging with a full-time job. I found this post quite therapeutic to write as it really made me think about my current situation, and what I could achieve moving forward.

Things started to speed up quite dramatically as we crossed into April.
I'd had enough of not making the most of my week-ends and evenings, it was time to actually plan stuff and make the most of being here. Looking back now I don't know how I managed to contain all of my excitement.
At the beginning of the month, we went on a week-end City Break to Prague with our dear friend Eloïse. It was my first time visiting another European Country which wasn't the UK or France, and it was my first time going travelling with a close friend. Needless to say we all had a pretty darn good-time - I smile every time I think back on it.

Prague in 35mm film - Part III

Only several days after our return, Summer & I headed off to the Old Vic theatre in London to see Rosencrantz & Guildenstern are Dead. It remains to this day one of the best plays I've seen, with wonderful performances and laugh-out-loud moments which left the entire audience in fits. We made sure to see as many plays as we could after that.
The best moment of the evening though was of course meeting a childhood hero, Daniel Radcliffe. A kind, patient, and humble man who took the time to meet everyone after his performance. Big smiles all round.

I thoroughly enjoy writing reviews, I did a Film & Theater degree after all! This play made me realise just how much I had access to within the Performing Arts realm of London. Despite some seats being super expensive, you can find a lot for only £10-£15, even more if you don't mind restricted seating.

This play definitely inspired us to go and see more performances, which in turn lead to more theater reviews here on TTW.

REVIEW: Rosencrantz & Guildenstern are Dead by Tom Stoppard

Several cinema outings and outfit shootings later, we came into May - and we were blessed with some pretty decent weather! We really made an effort to venture into London to create content, and we discovered some cool new places in the process.

One of my favourite posts from this sunny month was in collaboration with the lovely ladies from the Fashion Karussell - we all spoke about our favourite Spring trends, and I shot my pictures in the courtyard of the wonderful Victoria & Albert Museum.

Not only did we post some pretty good fashion content that month, we also worked really hard on our film/tv show reviews. We reviewed RiverdaleSupernatural, & Guardians of the Galaxy 2. Looking back, I'm now more excited than ever to dive deeper into the world of pop-culture next year!

In June, the Fashion Karussell collaborated again, this time the focus was on statement tees. I was really proud of the whole post, from the writing (which was based mainly on my passion for Feminism) and the pictures, which were shot in one of my favourite locations in London, just minutes away from the British Museum.

At this point, we had booked alot of travel related stuff for our backpacking trip. The adventure was fast approaching, and we were overwhelmed with both fear and excitement. We knew where we wanted to go and what we wanted to do: all was left was to finalise the itinerary. It makes my heart thump just thinking about it!

We packed so much into the month of July, I'm actually surprised looking back at how much we posted! It was a month full of film reviews for TTW. We found ourselves at the Cinema quite a lot, and not once were we let down. Cinema had a truly exceptional summer, and I'm very happy we put so much effort into our reviews: Wonder Woman, Spider-Man, Dunkirk and Baby Driver. I may have even let out a shriek of excitement when Edgar Wright liked my Insta post and faved my tweet regarding my review. I mean we all want our work to be acknowledged by our favourite directors, right?!

*we do not own the above image*

Not only did we see a lot of Cinema in July, we also made a quick trip to Trafalgar Studios to see Evanna Lynch perform in Disco Pigs, a play by Enda Walsh. We were lucky enough to speak with her briefly at the end of the performance, and she was so kind - leaving me a little overwhelmed!

All of the performances in the films and theatre plays we saw only built upon our love for all things Performing Arts related, and this month really did give us alot of amazing escapism.

August came quickly after, and with it a large number of 35mm film posts. This was an exciting month for us as we were heading home for the first time in nearly 4 months for a 10 day break, and we also had the opportunity to try out a wide angle lens on our beloved Canon A1 film camera.

The Natural History Museum in 35mm film

Finally, September. The month we were to set off and explore the world.
We set off for Canada exactly 1 year to the day we arrived back to the motherland, on the 16th of September 2017. The 2 months that followed were full of pure adventure. Just thinking about the sheer amount of things I got to experience whilst I was away has me bursting with excitement once more.

One of the first posts we shared from this trip featured the Capilano Suspension Bridge and Capilano River park.

September, October and November were all so special. We kept working on the blog whilst we were travelling, continuing to post every 2-3 days.
Every single post I shared during that time is special to me for one reason or another, but I do especially like the pictures we shot in Picton, NZ -featured in my post the social travelling adventures of the introverted non-drinker.

...And, the picture which sums it all up, really - pulled from our Hiking in Picton post.

It's hard to write a paragraph for each of the autumn months, as there are so many wonderful memories I could share. I genuinely can't believe it all happened. This adventure had such a massive impact on my life, and to try and summarize it all for this post would be to cheapen it with unworthy words.

The highlight of this trip would have to be the Lord of the Rings location tours we booked in New Zealand. Those of you who follow me on Insta had the opportunity to see me utterly losing-my-sh*t in my Instastories.

We did the Glenorchy tour which departed from Queenstown, and another tour which departed from Christchurch. The Edoras tour was the most memorable, as I achieved a life-long goal of standing where Eowyn stood.

The end of November approached, like a storm you see coming in the distance. We knew it would be tough but wow I didn't expect for the weeks following our return to be such a struggle.

The end of November and beginning of December have been a blur. The period of re-adjustment following the trip, the deep regret of not staying longer, the difficulty of dragging myself out of bed before 10am every morning - these past few weeks have been challenging in a different way!

There have been great moments, don't get me wrong. I finally got to see family and friends again, and I'm living back in the comfort of my family home for a short while. I can focus on my personal projects in peace, and take the time to think about what's next. For now though, it's time to enjoy the Festive period with my favourite people. Oh, and of course discover little moments from our Adventure as we get our film rolls developed!

All in all, not a bad year, if somewhat a little bit unstable. I met some amazing new people, had great moments with my loved ones, and have so, so many wonderful new memories. I'm so grateful for what this year has brought me.

Holly x


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