January to May is probably my least favourite time of year – I’ve never really been a fan of Spring. The fun of Christmas has been and gone and left us in the depths of winter, it’s the most intense and difficult period within education (luckily I have no exams this year, but the amount of coursework I’ll be doing makes up for it) and summer waits far ahead, teasing us because there’s nothing else to really look forward to. The answer? Retail therapy, of course.
The prospect of a new year is always a bit daunting for me – there seems a lot of pressure to make the moment perfect, which is something I don’t believe in anyway, and then expectations to make the whole year amazing. I’m an optimistic person, but inevitably there will be ups and downs to face throughout those twelve months and so it’s unrealistic to assume it will be ‘perfect’.
Traditions are a major part of my Christmas, and most of them I’ve stuck to religiously each year. I have always gone to pick out the best real tree (I’m a firm believer that artificial trees just aren’t the same) with my Dad, and insisted we all wear Santa hats while decorating. Usually after about ten minutes I would become chief decorator as my Mum, Dad and brother would drift off and do their own thing – but being the OCD way I am this secretly pleased me and I’d happily take over while listening to our one and only Christmas CD.
One of the things I love most about being at university somewhere far from home is the visits from friends and showing them round a city I can call my own. I’m lucky to have friends in other universities too so I can escape for a nice little city break every now and then.
Party season is officially upon us as the month of sparkles, surprises and Santa has arrived. The countdown for Christmas has begun (whether the Scrooges out there like it or not) and I’m super excited to finish this term of uni, get my last minute shopping done and spend the rest of December drinking too much prosecco, eating too much buffet food and catching up with friends and family. Winter clothes are either snuggly warm or shimmery and glam and I’ve picked out my best finds of both to get through chilly days and fancy nights in the run up to the best day of the year.
I am the worst person for saving money. EVER. Ask anyone close to me and they’ll confirm that my best intentions of putting money aside are unintentionally but inevitably swayed by McDonalds, trips to the pub, last minute nights out and, of course, a good old shopping spree. I’ve tried so many tactics that I’ve lost count (I even have a wish jar which are seemingly impossible to get into without breaking, but I’ve mastered the art of tempting any loose change out with a pair of tweezers…) and the little spur of the moment things always win me over before I can reach the end goal.
Now the depths of autumn have set in, it’s time to get serious about winter style (and Christmas preparations). For me, once Halloween and bonfire night are over, the countdown has officially begun and the magic of shopping, decorating and traditions hang in the air. The dark nights signify cosy, festive evenings and as long as I’m wrapped up warm I love walking home to my flat past the sparkly shops with that cold, November feel getting me all excited! I’ve already willingly let Bublé back into my life to sooth me from uni stress with Christmas cheer, started scouting presents for friends and family and written my list to Santa – here’s a peek at what’s on it…