What do I want from 2018? – Good question!

First things first let me wish all of you a very Happy New Year! I hope you managed to bring in the new year the way in style the way you wanted to and with whoever you wanted to! Now January has hit down many people have been asking me what my resolutions are for this year, what do I want to do differently in 2018 from 2017? And the answer truthfully is that I’m not making any resolutions this year! (I know, crazy)

For waaaaay too many years I have tried to set myself some resolutions and found myself having not thought about them again after the end of January so this year no more resolutions. I get it for some people setting a resolution or two works for them and I am by no means playing this down! Just not something that I have found works for me anymore! Instead I want to focus on the stuff I want from this year!


May sound like a stupidly obvious one but most of all I want to spend this year happy! Too often have I let little things get me down that really in hindsight shouldn’t have been things I let get me down! This term in uni is probably going to be one of the most stressful times I ever face so here’s to maintaining a positive mindset and staying happy!

Good Health

Now before you all think I’m jumping on the gym-going bandwagon…nope that’s not the case. That’s something I’m going to consider later on in the year when I find the time to be able to go again (not for weight loss either more for physical fitness – I’m quite content with the my body the way it is). When I talk about good health I mean general well being. I’d like 2018 to bring good general wellbeing both physically and mentally.


Both in working and personal life! This year I’ll be finishing up at university and graduating (scary) and moving on into the big wide world as a fully fledged adult! (at least in part haha) In terms of personal life success it kinda links back to the idea of being happy, I find life at least feels more successful if you are feeling good about it!

Now I could write a list as long as my arm probably about the things that I’d like from this year but I think these are my most important! 2017 was a great year and these things are just enhancing on last year, by no means changing it! It’s been lovely to see other people’s ideas about what they’re wanting to do (differently or otherwise) this year! What are your plans or resolutions for 2018? Let me know!

Hannah x (1)


And just like that.

First of all an apology… (feel like I’m repeating myself from the previous post) but time has just run away from me since going back to uni in September and it’s been this idea that has inspired me to come and write this post. As most people in the world will know we’ve just had Christmas Day (25th December) and whilst having a chat with my dad on boxing day, we we’re saying how mad it is that there’s so much time and build up towards this one day and then it’s almost like you blink and it’s been and gone for another year. The same thought has crossed my mind quite a few times these past few months with my time at university coming to a swift end (I only have a few months left – not okay.)

Time just seems to be getting faster and faster the older I get (I know I’m not old old yet but it’s something you start to notice). I find myself saying more and more often ‘I can’t believe we’re in December already’ or ‘As if another year has passed’. It’s in times like these when you have these moments (and particularly around new year) that it makes you reflect, on where you are in life, what’s just happened and potentially what your future has in store for you. I genuinely find it hard to believe sometimes that I’m coming to the end of my time at university. I remember going through all the application process like it was yesterday and it’s a little scary to think 4 years have nearly passed but in the same breath I’m so excited for what my next chapter in life will hold (will update you guys in a future post)!

Truthfully I don’t know if there was a clear aim or reason for me writing this but it was just something that has been on my mind and this is what this place is for, for me to come and share my thoughts! Do you find time seems to run away from you? That there never seems to be enough hours in the day to get things done? Leave any comments below and stay tuned for my next post!

Hannah x (1)

I promise I’ve not disappeared…

Hey everyone, just wanted to send a quick post out so you guys know I’m still around 🙂 It’s been a mad few months here, I’ve returned back to the U.K. permanently (for now) and managed to get my job back working with The Body Shop so I’ve been kept super busy! In the process of organising all my photos from my travels with all the information of where I stayed along with any recommendations I have and also other blog post material so keep your eyes peeled!

Hannah x (1)

Stay strong our kid…

In light of the awful news the world woke up to on Tuesday morning this week and being a mancunian myself I have felt like I wanted to dedicate a post to all those affected by what has happened. It has truly struck the hearts of so many people worldwide like all the other atrocities like this one that have occurred worldwide throughout the years. It really saddens me to think we live on such a beautiful planet but an incredibly ugly world. (I must stress this poem has not been written by me but it seemed very fitting).

A grey Tuesday morning ‘neath Lancastrian skies, we wake once again to wipe tears from our eyes. Forced to wear robes of weakness and pity, as cowards attack the very heart of our city.

Like always, we’ll comfort and hold one another, a Mancunian family of sisters and brothers. For a time our strut is reduced to a stagger, but make no mistake we’ll rekindle our swagger.

We’ll learn how to live with another deep scar, and if you think you can beat us you don’t know who we are.

We’re Collyhurst, Ancoats, Moston and Sale, we’re Oldham and Bury, Ashton, Rochdale.

We’re Pankhurst and Turing, the Gallagher brothers, we’re Morrissey, Marr and a million others.

We’re a City of workers, a City of shirkers, a City of tracksuits and bibles and burkas.

Vegetarian, Rastafarian, Atheist, Jew, 100% red, 100% blue.

We’re each of us different but never alone, in this Cosmopolitopia we all get to call ‘home’.

So come at us again, and again if you must, time after time we’ll rise from the dust.

You’ll never prevail – not against us, This is Manchester, Our Manchester, and the bees still buzz.



Study Abroad? Be prepared for one hell of an emotional rollercoaster ride!

This past few weeks (and whole time living abroad) I feel like I have gone through just about every emotion physically possible and I had no idea why. I’ve gone from being really happy, to feeling lonely/homesick, to anxious, to getting annoyed at the slightest thing too and let me tell you it is tiring work being a human! I stumbled across these posts a few weeks ago (Practising self-care whilst studying abroad by Jael Vaquero and I can’t believe it’s over! by Rory Moore) and they have both really resinated with me and consequently inspired me to talk about the emotional rollercoaster that is a year abroad.

Stage 1: University Application – idea of a YA is cool at this point

I’m going to cast your mind way back when you are at the application process for university. You are thinking about studying a language as a part of your degree (awesome) and you notice that your university offers a compulsory year abroad programme, (how cool is that?!) Where do I sign up for the chance to go an live life like an étrangère in France? Eating croissants and/or pain au chocolat every morning for breakfast, drinking wine with all your meals and eating baguettes until you physically can’t bare bread anymore, dream. It seems so far away at this point and doesn’t cause alarm.

Stage 2: Wait…it’s just around the corner!

So this stage kinda started to kick in for me around the time that your university will be organising those days for you where you get bombarded with information and you find it difficult to be able to process it all at once. Oh sh*t. It’s here. We actually need to put plans in place now for this and decide what it is we want to do for the duration of our year abroad (sounds simple enough?). For me I wanted to be a part of the British Council Language Assistants Scheme and work in a school of some kind teaching English, but this position required an application process (you can read a little more about this in my post A day in the life of a language assistant). I remember just worrying and panicking about getting the position (like any other job that you really want) and also hoping for the region I wanted to be placed in (Montpellier). No matter how much my teachers tried to reassure me I’d get the position, it didn’t help haha! This time in general is a bit of a stressful time gathering all necessary info you need and starting to try and find somewhere to live but you will get through it!

Stage 3: Excitement – so ready to live la vie française

Okay so now you’ve heard back from your corresponding agencies (university, British Council or work placement) and you now know where you are going to be living the following year! Sense of relief washes over you that you are not just going to be left wandering aimlessly somewhere in *insert country of choice here*. For me I didn’t get my first choice of region but I was placed in the Académie of Nice to work! I was buzzing! Live on the French Riviera for a year? YES PLEASE! Sun, sea and sand was going to be my new Hakuna Matata 🙂 You now are looking forward to going and you begin to feel impatient to get there as the countdown begins!

Stage 4: Sheer panic/nervousness

This happened about a week or so before I left for France. I just had a complete meltdown about the whole thing. Leaving my friends and family, leaving Manchester (the city I’ve always known) and going into the unknown. I wasn’t able to feel totally comfortable with everything because I had never experienced this before, it was this fear of the unknown that got me most I think. It was the first time I had moved out of home too, double whammy for me (nice one Han). Again this stage will pass, don’t panic.

Stage 5: You find out your language isn’t as good as you thought.

So this stage you can more or less expect during your first few weeks in your new home. I personally just remember feeling really excited and happy one day then totally overwhelmed the next by having to do the slightest thing like go to the supermarket. When I got here I didn’t have a guaranteed flat because I wanted to actually see the properties before handing any money over or signing any contract, so that was first thing on my ‘To Do’ list. Thanks to le bon coin I sorted myself out with a cute little studio flat right in the centre of the old town in Hyères (and so returns some of the confidence that makes me feel like I can actually make it through this year sane and in one piece). There are other options out there for you to find some accommodation – you can always try to find Facebook groups in and around your area for either Erasmus students or other language assistants and then try and roomie up together, or even get in contact with your school early and ask for previous assistants details to see if they can help you out with any accommodation recommendations!

Stage 6: Travel bug sets in

I remember this kinda setting in for me after a few weeks of being in France, you have had a bit of time to get accustomed to your surroundings and you feel a little more comfortable living life in a foreign country. You now want to put everywhere onto your bucket list of places to have ticked off by the end of this year. One of the things I’ve loved most about living in France is how reasonable some flight prices have been to get around Europe! Sadly the same can’t be said for some train prices within France but yes this stage will happen to you and it’s great when it does.

Stage 7: Homesickness

Throughout this whole year I wouldn’t say I have suffered with terrible homesickness but it has appeared a couple of times. The main time it got to me was around Halloween/Bonfire Night as this is arguably one of my absolute favourite times at home back in the UK and I also feel like homesickness hit the British assistants out here more than the American assistants because for us Brits home is a lot closer to France than the USA and consequently relatively easy to reach! It won’t put a complete downer on your whole year abroad just know that it’s normal to feel this, but fear not, it won’t last forever 😉

Stage 8: Appreciation of your new life/culture

Yep believe it or not I have actually appreciated my new culture and life in France (albeit some of the time aside from transport strikes and the smoking like chimneys). The little things that make life seem so different to mine at home in the UK are what makes this country what it is; boulangeries open early in the morning for you to get your freshly baked croissants and pain au chocolats before you go to work, having an alfresco meal, even sitting outside a little café having a coffee. All these little things are the things that we would look at and think “That’s very French” haha, but you learn to love them and consequently appreciate the different culture that you are now a part of.

Stage 9: Wait a minute…where has all that time gone?

Before you know it it’s time to start saying your goodbyes to people and wrapping up your new life you started not too long ago. I feel like I’m getting to this point now where I have started to say goodbye to other assistants and my time as a language assistant has come to end, sadly. I’m really gutted that it has finished, it literally only feels like yesterday that I was packing all my life up back home to head out here and now soon enough I’ll be packing it all back up again to head back to Manchester. Luckily I have decided to take some time for me and stay in France until the end of June 🙂 I’m going to be doing some more travelling around France and I will most definitely be ‘profitez-ing – bien’ of all the sunshine here (and working on a killer tan haha)

For anyone who has done a year abroad do all these feelings sound a little familar? Let me know if you have experienced them in the comments.

Stay tuned for my travel updates of all the places I’ve managed to see in France during these past few weeks 🙂 (it’s just taking me a little while to get through it all haha but fear not the info is on its way)

Hannah x (1)




A week at home never hurt nobody!

Don’t worry I’m still here! Haha!

First things first I just wanna say sorry I’ve been a bit quiet recently! Seems like forever since I wrote my last post on here but I’ve been working on a few different posts that aren’t quite finished yet (fear not they are on their way) and I’ve also been super busy recently. My time as a language assistant has been coming to an end here in France so my goodbyes have started and amongst that I decided to have a last minute week trip back home over the Easter holidays so a lot of my time was taken trying to see everyone whilst I was back! But here are some of my highlights from my time at home:


So for those of you guys out there like me who watch RHOC (The Real Housewives of Cheshire), you might recognise this lovely lady – Tanya Bardsley 😀 She’s my absolute favourite on the show and I noticed whilst I was home she was opening up her own little boutique shop in Wilmslow. Me being a crazy fan like I am went down to meet her haha 🙂 (info for her boutique store can be found here:

AND it was my beautiful friend Rhiannon’s twenty-first birthday celebrations in Leeds over the Easter weekend and as you can see we had a great time 😀

I felt like this week at home was well needed for me, gave me a chance to switch off from French for a week (which was a welcome break haha!) and just to enjoy spending time with my family and friends. It felt good to be back on Mancunian soil 😉 I’m getting back into the swing of things with little thoughts from hannah and I’m looking forward to sharing my new posts with you all! Stay tuned!

Hannah x (1)


If all else fails…make a list!

What a life motto to go by eh? I know this personally works for me when it comes to mountains of work that I need to get through and I just don’t know where to start haha! Phoebe Henderson took list making to a whole new level in another new book I’ve discovered and since you guys and girls seemed to enjoy my last book post I thought I’d write another one!

As much as I enjoyed the thriller/crime novels by Katerina Diamond (you can catch my thoughts on these in my post What a ‘Diamiond’!) they are quite heavy reads in terms of them being quite graphic and dealing with lots of death haha! So something a little bit more upbeat came in the form of Joanna Bolouri’s The List: A year of adventures in bed.


Now for those don’t know (apologies to those who do know) I would normally pick up a non-fiction over a fiction book and I have to say (like most other woman out there) I love a good romance novel. (Sometimes the cheesier the better!) This book ticks all of those boxes for me. I found it through recommendation by a friend and it has been a lovely find!

To give you a quick idea about the storyline (without spoiling it) take a look at the description below:

Phoebe Henderson may be single but she sure doesn’t feel fabulous. It’s been a year since she found her boyfriend Alex in bed with another woman, and multiple cases of wine and extensive relationship analysis with best friend Lucy have done nothing to help. Faced with a new year but no new love, Phoebe concocts a different kind of resolution.

The List: ten things she’s always wanted to do in bed but has never had the chance (or the courage!) to try. A bucket list for between the sheets. One year of pleasure, no strings attached. Simple, right?

Factor in meddlesome colleagues, friends with benefits, getting frisky al fresco and maybe, possibly, true love and Phoebe’s got her work cut out for her.

Classic tale for all those single ladies out there (and taken ones too!) I personally thought this book was brilliant – I read it in 3 days. I could not for the life of me put it down haha. It’s a great feel good rom-com in book form and I reckon this would make a great film in the future! It’s a good read to have a laugh and it’s full of some rather interesting scenarios. For those in need of an easy-read then look no further, this needs to be your next book choice!

★★★★★ – from me!

Hannah x (1)