Too often when we look back we think of things we wished we had done or things we wished we could change. The end of this summer has been full of these kinds of thoughts for me, and I really don't enjoy having that kind of negativity in my life. I wanted to make a list of all the things I've done this summer, just to remind myself how lucky I am for all the things and people in my life. We should always be grateful for the good things, and try to forget the bad, so having a big old list of happiness to look back might just be what the doctor ordered. If you chose to do the same, let me know, and we can share in each others good memories.
1) Traveled further than I ever have in the rest of my life combined. This summer I got to visit both Austria and Hungary, and they are two very beautiful countries. I highly recommend a trip if you haven't been.
2) Read at least 90% of my TBR shelf. At the start of the summer I had a big pile of books I'd accumulated over the academic year, and I've managed to read most of them over the 3 months I've had off.
3) Posted regularly on here. One of my big goals has been to maintain this blog to the standard I want, and for the most part I've managed this. I now have roughly 20 hits each day (some days a lot more, some a lot less), for which I am very grateful. There will be a couple of changes once term starts, but I'll fill you in on those at the end of the week.
4) Spent time with people I care about. A huge chunk of my summer has been spent with either my family (in the opening months) and latterly my friends. They have been so supportive of me for such a long time, and they really do mean the world to me.
5) Watched the sun rise from both sides. I've stayed up so late that I've seen dawn, as well as woken up before the sun. Both are equally beautiful experiences.
6) Enjoyed a 5 course meal. Whilst in Austria, the hotel we stayed in put on a 5 course meal each night. Though it was far too much to manage each night, I don't think there was a bad dish on the menu!
7) Written. As someone on a creative writing course this might sound silly, but I have done huge chunks of writing this summer. Most obviously on here, but I've also written for myself and in the new academic term I'm getting published in the university newspaper. I'll post a link here when it's online.
8) Dyed my hair. This might be a nothing thing to a lot of people, but my hair is a huge part of who I am. It's one of my most defining features, so changing it in any way has always been a pretty scary prospect for me. This aside, its also not very hardy as far as hair goes, so I've been worried about the amount of damage it might incur were I to dye it. I took the plunge at the start of last month though, and have been loving the results. I don't think I've quite achieved the colour I want yet, but I've had a blast experimenting and learning. I also got to experience two hours of my boss sighing, shaking his head and laughing at my new hair. He doesn't understand why people wear makeup, let alone want to 'paint their hair'.
9) Improved at my job. I work with children and when I first started back in October I'll be the first person to admit I was a little intimidated. Over this summer I've been working 3 shifts a week and have formed a closer relationship with the children and my colleagues. I love where I work, and its nice to feel like I've made progress, even if that feeling is only coming from within myself.
10) Been spoilt. My friends and family have been so incredibly lovely to me over the summer - they have been understanding and kind and giving. I couldn't ask anything more of them. My family have spoilt me by taking me away on holiday and giving my money to buy things I want rather than things I need. My friends took me out to lunch the other day and are always doing little lovely things for me. At the risk of becoming very soppy, I cannot be more grateful for the love they have given me.
If you chose to make this list for yourself and feel comfortable sharing it, please let me know (@VickiMaitland), I'd love to read it.