Having a boyfriend has changed me..

It’s almost half a year since my last post.. And I have changed immeasurably since then..

I am such a different person to the girl who last updated this blog. I have been through so much, learnt so much about myself and about the world. I feel stronger now than I ever have felt before, and I’m so excited for the adventures that lie ahead of me.

It’s my hope that this post might encourage some of you out there. Two years ago I was held captive by my anxiety and depression. The smallest task took so much effort. I lived in a constant state of fear, stress and exhaustion. I hardly ever saw friends outside of school, it just took too much energy for me. To go a single day without crying was a big achievement. I looked to the future and only saw stress of exams and eventually having to live on my own.

And what has changed? I am now in a happier place than I have ever been. I’ve graduated school, finished my IB. In October I’m travelling to Nepal to do charity work there for six months before heading to Uni. I’ve even begun to reduce my antidepressant meds 🙂 I’ve integrated into a new group of friends, we hang out several times a week..

And, I have a boyfriend. We’ve been together for almost three months now, it’s my first proper relationship. He is such a blessing. A constant support for me (he once sat outside in the middle of the night with me for 2.5hrs whilst I cried and had a panic attack). He is simply amazing. And I feel that I have grown so much as a person since we got together. My self confidence has really improved.

When I think back to the anxious girl I was six months ago, I am so proud of how far I’ve come. I feel strong and more independent. Sure, I have bad days, but they are now few and far between.

So I want to encourage you. Recovery is possible. You just need patience. I know it’s hard. But just keep going, climbing one step at a time, and before you know it, you’ll look back and realise you’ve climbed the whole staircase.

Hope x

 

 

 

 

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2015 in Review: 7 Questions

It’s the last day of 2015! What a crazy year it has been. I’ve compiled a list of questions to help me reflect on this year’s events. I would encourage you to answer these questions for yourself. It can be very healthy to take some time out to reflect now and again.

  1. Describe 2015 in three words: challenging, exciting, developing. This year has pushed me out of my comfort zone, I’ve done things I never thought were possible. Although I’ve been fighting my anxiety and depression, I feel like I’ve really developed as a person and changed my mentality. This year has got me really excited for the future, as I’ve applied to university and for a gap year.
  2. What single achievement are you most proud of? The thing that really stands out for me is my month-long internship in a UK university. I learnt so much about psychology, and became much more independent and confident in myself.
  3. What book or movie affected your life the most? This is a recent one for me. On Christmas day I began reading a book about Bonhöffer, a famous Christian who stood up against the Nazis. I’ve found it so inspiring, and I would really recommend it.
  4. Who or what are you most thankful for? My God has been incredible as always in 2015. Sticking by my side and helping me through in my darkest days. I’m also so grateful for my sister. Although she is unaware of my mental challenges, she is always there to laugh with me and cheer me up 🙂
  5. What healthy habits did you adopt? I might have been a bit lazy with my eating, but I’m pleased that I made a commitment to workout at the gym twice a week, and having been keeping it up since August.
  6. What is the most important lesson you learned? Keep on moving because the sun will rise again. Don’t get too caught up in the worries of today, but take a step back. Break down challenges into bitesize chunks and keep walking forward, one step at a time.
  7. What things did you do for the first time in 2015? I stayed away from my family for a month, went in a limousine, went clubbing, applied to university, became a vegetarian, started blogging, cooked a three-course meal for the family, went to a spa, took part in a Colour Run, made a tie-dye top, saw my brainwaves on a computer screen and caught the bouquet at a wedding.

I can’t believe this year has passed so quickly. I can’t wait for the adventures 2016 will bring!

Hope x

Shattered Glass

As I kneel here among the shattered glass,

Frantically attempting to piece together shards,

I know that even if these falling tears from my eyes,

Blood from my hands and aching from my heart,

Were as strong as glue,

The window would never again look as perfect as yesterday.

Although you took the swing to shatter this glass,

Through which your face I could once see,

I know it is my own fault that I kneel here now,

Sparkling splinters covering me.

.

For all these years I did not know,

That this window’s view,

Looked very different on this side for me,

Than it did for you.

.

Yes I know deep down that my attempts to rebuild,

This connection we had is but futile,

There’s a gap in my heart that your smile once filled,

So I’ll kneel in this glass all the while.

.

I just want you to know of the guilt I feel,

That the joy we once had is now gone,

Yet what connection a life without glass would reveal,

Is something I could never take on.

.

Do not cry my friend, I ask of you,

For it is not from you that I flee,

But how could I ever put my trust in you,

When I cannot put my trust in me?

.

This glass was here for a reason,

It could not be removed, though you’ve tried,

It’s my fortress, my transparent castle,

The protection behind which I hide.

.

Though I may appear strong I am weak,

This smile I wear will not last,

So don’t say I’m the one that you seek,

I’m a wreck. Kneeling in glass.


Hi guys. I wrote this quick poem a few days ago to reflect on a current situation I’m in. People walk around with a pane of glass separating them from the world, from others. This glass is transparent, and so friendships can exist between people through a glass layer. But if someone wants to come closer, it can be really tough, and can lead to pain and damage. Sometimes we need to take a step back and understand why the glass is there in the first place.

Hope x

DIY String Art Gift

Countdown to Christmas: 24

FullSizeRender-9Hi guys, this was meant to go up yesterday. I wanted to share with you the gift I made for my father this Christmas. Hopefully it will inspire you too!

I began with a piece of wood. Now I know very little about wood, try and make sure that the wood you find isn’t too hard, because I found it quite challenging to hammer some of the nails in. I picked up this piece in my local DIY store. I also bought a pack of nails, which are really cheap.

The next step is to decide what pattern you want to go for. I chose a map of Germany, with a heart in the middle. You can print off your pattern, cut it out and draw around it with pencil onto the wood, like I did, or simply draw it free-hand.

I then hammered the nails into place along the border like so: FullSizeRender-10.jpgUsing embroidery thread or string, thread the nails together. You can do this in a simple rotational pattern like me, or a more random web-like design, which also looks cool. As a final touch I used a gold pen to write “Deutschland” along the top.FullSizeRender-9.jpg

And voila! I gave this to my dad for Christmas today and he really likes it.

I’d love to see your version of this nail and string art. Also, let me know how your Christmas is going! I’ll be doing a haul in the coming days, and I also received a Yoga mat for Christmas, so look out for a Yoga routine!

Love,

Hope x

 

 

 

 

Christmas Home Decor & Gift Wrapping!

Countdown to Christmas: 22

IMG_7288.JPGSo it’s safe to say that I’ve been pretty awful at sticking to this one-post-a-day thing, but I’ve been having an internet detox over the past few days, which was great. I really recommend it.

Anyways! I hope you enjoy this selection of home Christmas decorations and gifts. Maybe it will inspire you, and will hopefully put you in a festive mood! 🙂

Let’s start with the present wrapping:FullSizeRender-20.jpg

I love spending time making my gifts look really beautiful. I know it’s kind of sad, but I always save nice wrapping paper and ribbons to reuse!

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For my mum and sister, I have reused some velveted tartan wrapping paper, which is simply gorgeous. I also found the ribbons in my collection. I like to buy gift tags instead of making them, even though they are very simple, because I find that they look so much better. They aren’t over expensive either. FullSizeRender-21

The tree. The central Christmas decoration of the house. We’ve gone for a wine red-silver-wooden theme. I also added some red and white paper stars that I made last year to give a more personalised touch. FullSizeRender-29We picked up these cute wooden decorations at the German Christmas markets a couple of years ago. The Germans do Christmas so nicely I have to say.FullSizeRender-30.jpgWe were given this cute decoration last year. Isn’t it adorable?

FullSizeRender-22My grandma made this lovely arrangement for our fireplace. There is a poinsettia, holly, fir branches, candles, pinecones, ribbons and more. FullSizeRender-23I also decorated our mantelpiece with mini tree figures, candles and a tiny Mary and Joseph ornament.

FullSizeRender-25I love this wooden star in our window. It’s another German decoration!FullSizeRender-26.jpgOur little nativity set is from Indonesia. Little wooden stars and cinnamon sticks add an extra sweet touch 🙂

FullSizeRender-17This large star is from Ikea. It is seriously massive! But looks lovely too.FullSizeRender-24We’ve had this cute porcelain plaque for years, it makes me nostalgic 🙂

FullSizeRender-31I set up three little decorations in Christmassy candle holders, with two paper stars that I made. FullSizeRender-18Mustn’t forget the cards! I think it’s really nice to display them somewhere.

I hope you’re feeling festive now! I wish you all a very very merry Christmas!

Love,

Hope x

 

 

Christmas Nails Inspiration!

Countdown to Christmas: 15

Hi guys, it’s almost Christmas! I don’t know about you, but I’m super excited. I put the tree up yesterday, got my Christmas sweaters and gingerbread lattes.. but something is still missing… Nails!

I hope this collection of ideas inspire you to get creative with some nail art this season!

8e6e04b6a4ada8a26724a31dba9b0e2d1. I just love this edgy Christmas look. Definitely going to give this one a go 🙂

d73efcd0f23233a352e9d96d8206c3ca2. Simple, but so cute! It kind of looks like a candy cane

de46ef2196a5d0208522adb9b852065f3. This is perhaps for the more talented nail artists among us. It looks really effective though. If you’re struggling with this precision, you could always go for some Christmas-sweater nail wraps.

b809754533a7874ef67f057f04d2bc0b4. Little presents, how cute!

d1d05c656378c0fcecb017648fe43fd55. How good does this one look? I wish I could paint my nails with such precision!

2df1a3c3198c98a35d7311c024633cd1d8d57bcfb819c19977a9661a2c704a69e33ed835c7089ddb0b4c651b7b179ce3de605af60d050bc994c8d075249dc6ffI hope you enjoyed this quick inspiration selection. Check out my Pinterest page to see more!

I love you all and wish you a very merry Christmas!

Hope x

Christmas Cookies Recipe

Countdown to Christmas: 14

FullSizeRender-12Guys I’m so sorry, I missed two days :/ hopefully this recipe will make up for it! These cookies are delicious and super easy, you can really go-to-town with the decoration as well 🙂

FullSizeRender-9To make about 30 cookies, you will need:

  • 1 cup butter/margarine
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 3 cups plain flour

 

FullSizeRender-10Let’s get started!

  1. Preheat your oven to 180°C/350°F
  2. Cream butter and sugar together in a bowl
  3. Beat in the egg and vanilla extract. I like to add a handful of flour at this stage to prevent the mixture from curdling
  4. Mix in the flour and baking powder a little at a time until you form a stiff dough!FullSizeRender-11
  5. Roll out the dough and cut some shapes. I made Christmas trees, stars, and snowman (using two circular cutters)
  6. Bake for 6-10 minutes until slightly golden, then cool before decorating
  7. Now comes the best part! You can use whatever decorations you like to make the cookies look extra  special. I piped the shape outlines before filling in the centres a few minutes later to avoid the icing dripping 🙂
  8. Enjoy!FullSizeRender-13.jpg

 

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Hope x


Also, thank you so much much for helping me reach over 1000 hits on this blog! I’m so grateful for all your support, it means a lot to me xxx