Thursday, 28 August 2014

Last ever blog post as Miss Samuel!

So... I'm getting married in two days!

This week has been (and will continue to be) absolutely hectic with sorting last minute arrangements for the wedding, packing for our honeymoon and moving the last of my things into our new house. However, all the hard work will be worth it on Saturday afternoon when I become Mrs Davies!

I think it might take me a while to get used to my new name. I wrote all our wedding place cards yesterday and stared at the one labelled 'Bethan Davies' for a good few minutes because I couldn't figure out who she was! This might also be due to extreme tiredness... I definitely haven't had enough sleep this week.

I won't be writing any blog posts for the next few weeks due to being on honeymoon and finishing off the never ending moving process, but I have some great guest posts lined up for you from these lovely people:

Danielle, Underland to Wonderland
Cheryl, Peppermint and Pearls
Liz, Distract Me Now Please
Clare James 

Keep a look out for these guest posts and keep your fingers crossed for sun on Saturday, and I'll catch up with you all at the end of September!

Tuesday, 19 August 2014

Last big meal before the wedding!

I'm sure it won't surprise you to hear that I'm currently in strict 'wedding diet' mode. The big day is less than a fortnight away so I'm spending even more time than usual in the gym and obsessing over eating healthily and cutting out any rubbish from my diet. Boring, but essential for my sanity!

I went out for lunch with my lovely work colleagues yesterday as this is my last week in work before my wedding and honeymoon leave. We decided to go to the Cedar Tree Farm restaurant in Cardiff Bay as we hadn't been there before as a group. You can read my previous blog post on this amazing place here. I fully intended to be healthy and to restrict myself to a very small helping from the carvery, but this just didn't happen. I can't say no to food when it's right in front of me!

I went for the beef option as I haven't tried it before and it looked very lean. So I started well! I then said yes to a yorkshire pudding and stuffing, and things just snowballed from there...

I even went for the 'small plate' option instead of my usual 'standard plate', but it didn't seem to reduce my portion size. I just piled things even higher than usual! My plate mainly consisted of beef, yorkshire pudding, stuffing, roast parsnips, roast potatoes, swede, carrots, red cabbage, some kind of cauliflower cheese concoction and onion gravy. Diet fail! I probably did manage to squeeze in my 5 a day though, on the bright side.

After insisting from the beginning that none of us were having dessert, we eventually decided to share a slice of the Galaxy cheesecake between the 7 of us as it looked so beautifully decadent. We weren't quite prepared for the sheer size of the portion...

We didn't manage to finish the magnificent slice (if you can even call it that) even though there were 7 of us there to tackle it! Yes, most of us are on diets, but that still shows how massive the thing was. It was so good though... the biscuit base was absolutely beautiful and there were two different layers of chocolate mousse which were both mouth-wateringly delicious. I only wish I'd managed to finish the whole thing off, but I did have a tiny bit of a conscience left at this point which strongly insisted that I'd feel guilty later if I ate any more. Put the spoon down! I consoled myself by mentally pencilling in a guilt-free date to return after the honeymoon in order to conquer one of these fantastic desserts. Well, I say 'guilt-free'... I don't think anyone could consume that much sugar/fat/chocolatey goodness without feeling a bit guilty. 

Needless to say, I was too full to eat anything else substantial all day and I worked extra hard in my Spin class after work. 

So I've (hopefully) had my last big meal before the wedding day... I'm glad it was such a good one! 

Thursday, 14 August 2014

Wedding countdown

You might have noticed that my blog updates have become less frequent in the last few weeks. This one word explains everything:


Yes, my wedding is creeping ever closer and I've got a never ending list of things to sort out every night. This means I've had to neglect my blog as it's impossible to fit everything in, but hopefully I'll be able to make up for the lack of posts after we come back from honeymoon and things are a bit more relaxed. 

Anyway, as frantic wedding preparations have been stealing me away from my blog and causing quite a lot of stress this week, I thought I'd write a quick blog post on what I'm looking forward to most about the day. It's important to remember that it's supposed to be an exciting and happy day and that no one else will care about the little details as much as I do! More importantly, no one else will even notice if the little things don't go quite right on the day.

And even more importantly... it's so crucial to try to remember that it's my day (and Neil's)!

1. Getting ready
I'm really looking forward to putting my wedding dress on once my hair and make up have been done and I'm wearing all my lovely jewellery and accessories for the occasion. Obviously I've worn the dress quite a few times now for various fittings, but I can't wait to see what it looks like once everything else has been perfected. I'm so glad I decided to ask someone to do my hair and make up for me rather than doing it all myself as it'll take a lot of the stress away on the actual morning of the wedding. I'm not sure why I even considered doing it myself... I'm not even very good at applying my 'everyday' make up and my hair is constantly in a ponytail! 

2. Walking down the aisle
Although I'm an introvert and the shy part of me is dreading having to stand in front of lots of people on my wedding day, I'm genuinely looking forward to walking down the aisle with my dad and seeing everyone's faces as I come in to the church. There's a strong possibility that I'll cry and spoil all my make up... I well up every time I think about it!  

3. Being driven away in a fancy car 
I don't even know what make or model our wedding car is as I know nothing about cars, but I do know that it's beautiful. We also get champagne on our way to the hotel so I'm excited about this... first drink together as a married couple! This might also be one of our only chances to be alone together and to have a quiet chat all day, so I definitely want to make the most of it. 

4. Having all the people I love in one room
This NEVER happens, so I can't wait to have all my family, my uni friends,school friends, other friends, Neil's family and Neil's friends all in the same room. It'll take me a while to get around everyone but it'll be totally worth it. Surely this is the best thing about every wedding?

5. The food 
I don't think anyone will be surprised to see this item on the list. If you are surprised, you must be very new to my blog. I'm on a strict diet at the moment and will probably practically starve myself the week before the wedding, so naturally I can't wait to be able to eat whatever I want! We've got lots of lovely food planned for guests and I intend to eat more than my fair share.

So these are the five things I'm mostly looking forward to about the big day... does anyone have anything to add that I've forgotten about? Please feel free to give me more things to look forward to!

Thursday, 7 August 2014

Famous tweets!

You probably already know that I'm a massive fan of Twitter. Do you know what I'm an even bigger fan of? Getting tweets from famous people!

I've been tweeted twice by famous people in the last few weeks so I thought I'd share these momentous occasions on my blog so that you can all partake in my excitement. You probably won't be as excited as I was (and still am), but you can humour me and pretend.

So on to momentous occasion number one... I had my second hen night a few weeks ago with my work colleagues. My lengthy obsessions with certain celebrities (mostly Welsh rugby players) are quite legendary so the girls had prepared masks of some of my crushes over the years which they wore during a game of 'Guess Beth's crush'. This game involved Rhian reading out obscure facts to see if I could guess who the facts were about... needless to say, I guessed them all correctly. I'm a mine of information when it comes to certain baby faced individuals! I loved this idea, and I especially loved the Rhys Williams masks as he's probably my favourite celebrity of all time. We decided to get all the Rhys masks together so that we could tweet a photo to Rhys as he's quite prolific on Twitter.

Look at that beautiful face! (His, not mine)

Much to our (my) excitement, he promptly tweeted back telling us we were awesome and asking what the occasion was. When he was told that it was my hen night, he tweeted: 'Please tell her congratulations and I wish her and her husband all the best for the future.' Waaahhh! What a lovely man, and I'm not even biased. Well, maybe a tiny bit. 

The second famous tweet came from David Mitchell of Peep Show fame. I'm reading his hilarious autobiography at the moment and love the fact that he, just like me, looks like he's trying to break back in to his house once he's locked his front door as he's so security conscious. I therefore decided to tweet about this similarity: 'Reading @RealDMitchell's autobiography... I'm not the only person who looks as if I'm trying to break back in once I've locked my front door!' He then replied a few hours later and said 'It's reassuring to hear I'm not alone.' Again, waaaahhhh! I would have thought that David Mitchell gets tweeted quite a lot so it's great that he made the effort to reply. He's now gone up even more in my estimation. 

Has anyone famous ever tweeted you? Did you also get super excited and write a blog post on it...?

Monday, 4 August 2014

5 reasons why I'll always have a paper diary

As much as I love technology and my smartphone, I could never live without my paper diary.

I buy a new diary every June as I'm still in the academic diary cycle, and it's genuinely one of the highlights of my year. As soon as I buy my new diary, I set aside an hour or so to transfer everyone's birthdays from the old diary to the new one, write down any holidays I've got planned, make a note of any upcoming Welsh rugby games and note any annual leave days I've booked. For me, that is an extremely exciting hour of organisation bliss.

So why do I love my paper diary so much?

1. I get to choose a new pretty pattern every year. I usually spend half an hour agonising over which pattern to choose, but it's totally worth it when I get to take a pretty diary like this home with me (after I've paid for it, of course).

2. Calendars on phones/computers are actually a bit too complicated and advanced in some ways when you want to find something quickly as you can choose from day, week or month format. It's never in the right format when I want to find a specific entry, and it's generally easier to flick through a few pages and find the exact day I'm looking for.

3. I love crossing off the days on the calendar at the front of the diary. It makes me excited about things I've got planned for the future... I must stop wishing all my days away.

4. I get such a sense of organised delight when I confirm a date and put it in my diary. I actually get very annoyed if plans get changed or cancelled and I have to edit an entry! I don't even cross out entries any more as it grates on me too much... I just write 'cancelled' neatly by the side of it. I'm well aware that this blog post is making me sound like a crazy person.

5. My diary is perfectly pocket sized so it fits into my many bags and I don't go anywhere without it. I can always whip it out when I need to check if I'm free on a certain date, and I can also use the 'Notes' section at the back to jot down important details, financial transactions and so on while I'm on the go.

I love my paper diary! Does anyone else even still use a paper diary or am I a dinosaur? Let me know!

Friday, 1 August 2014

Monthly cinema round up: July

I know I've said this about nearly every month this year, but where did July go? I only went to see two films last month which is a shockingly low tally for me and is an indication of how busy I am at the moment. I'm actually speed-writing this post in between paying wedding bills and composing wedding emails... it's fair to say that the wedding has taken over my life.

So what films did I manage to fit in last month?

How to Train your Dragon 2
Such a lovely film! I only vaguely remember the first film as I fell asleep for a large proportion of it while watching the DVD. I should add that this was due to extreme tiredness, so no reflection on the film itself. This film is a great stand alone film in its own right so you won't feel as if you've missed out if you haven't seen the first instalment. Lots of funny moments and a few tear jerking moments... you will definitely have a lump in your throat at some point during the film. You will also secretly want a pet dragon.

Dawn of the Planet of the Apes 
AMAZING. Fantastic visual effects, spectacular characterisation (for both the people and the apes) and a captivating plot. Although I love Caesar (the head ape) and his little family, Maurice (the orangutan) is by far my favourite character in this film. I was on the edge of my seat throughout and was genuinely afraid during some scenes as the heightened emotions and grave sense of danger are portrayed so effectively. The tension between human and ape is obviously very apparent as it was in the first film, but I didn't expect the violent injection of tension between the apes themselves. I think I like this sequel even more than the first film, and that's really saying something!

And my favourite film in July was... Dawn of the Planet of the Apes.

Hopefully I'll be able to fit in a few more films this month in between wedding planning/stressing. Check back next month to find out!