35 Before 35 ~ The Results

Another year has passed, and we find ourselves here, with me bemoaning the fact that a) I haven’t ticked off many of my birthday goals, and b) I haven’t got around to blogging about most of the ones I did tick off.

My excuse this year is that I was on a roll just before my birthday with some posts about the ones I did tick off, and then disaster struck. I fell over whilst rollerskating and fractured my wrist on the day before my birthday, and typing is not the easiest thing in the world right now. But I’m perservering, in the hopes of getting this post written, and a new list up before too much time elapses!

Firstly, a roundup of the ones I completed but didn’t blog about…


I dyed my hair! Well, kinda. I wanted to try something like a pastel colour, or maybe go grey, but it didn’t happen. But I did a sort of dip dye on the ends of my hair with a Bleach London kit, and I really like the results! So I’m calling it a win.

I managed to photograph 50 Blue Plaques. It was always a bit problematic as to how I was going to write a whole blog post about all 50 without it being the dullest thing in the world, so I’ll just say here that I did it with a few days to spare, and I’m going to continue on my Blue Plaque quest!


I’m so annoyed that I didn’t get around to blogging about the Warner Bros. Studio Tour – it happened in May for goodness’ sake! I may still write a post about it (I probably won’t), but suffice to say, I went and had a fabulous time (again).

I also saved up for and bought my camera. I saved five pound notes for months, but ended up putting a hefty chunk towards it straight out of my pocket, because I wanted it before I went on holiday.

Theatre Pins


I made pin displays, inspired by something I’d seen on Instagram – I bought some cork place mats, spray painted them, and then cut them into cloud shapes. They aren’t hanging up like I wanted them to be, but it’s still a win.

The theatre trip was already in the offing when I made the list, and I ended up going to see Half a Sixpence with my best friends. Very good it was too!20214429_331006903993994_8025098950367248384_n

Finally, another one that I’m really annoyed that I didn’t get to blog about; I visited Gold Hill in Shaftesbury, Dorset. Known to many as the Hovis Hill, from the old television advert, it’s where my Granddad was born, so I’ve wanted to go for years. It was just as special as I expected it to be.

Glasses IMG_1554

Then there are the two (!) that I managed to blog about; I got new glasses, and I threw a Gilmore Girls party.

I tried to compile a top 50 songs list – I started it on New Year’s Eve, and never finished it. I failed miserably at reading more diversely, I think of all the books I’ve read this year, only two have been written by people of colour, and I can’t find any other diversity amongst them at all. That’s seriously shocking, and something I need to address.

I started listening to an album a week, but didn’t get very far with it. It’s a series I want to continue with, but I won’t be adding it to my next list. I managed a further six films on the Film4 Musicals list, but was still short of of 40 films, at 27.

So my final tally was a meagre nine out of 35. Not a great result, but the joy is as much in making the list and trying to tick them off as it is in actually achieving them!


35 Before 35 ~ Get new glasses

Every year I make a list of things I’d like to achieve before my next birthday, and every year I fail to tick off at least 75% of them. I’m notoriously rubbish at them, but I just like making the lists, and giving it a go. And then it gets to a week before my birthday, and I realise that I have ticked some things off, but completely forgotten to blog about them.

So here we are again; my birthday is on Sunday and I’m blogging frantically! One thing that I put on the list as a way to try and motivate me to actually do, was to get new glasses. I’ve needed to get my eyes tested for ages, but have put it off again and again, before finally heading along to Boots in March.

Once I had a new prescription, I started looking for new glasses. I never buy from opticians anymore, because their glasses are just too darn expensive. So I always take a look at a variety of online glasses retailers, to see if anything takes my fancy.


I ended up buying from a company called Glasseslit, because I spotted these particular glasses in a sponsored Instagram post (Instagram, you know what you’re doing). Glasseslit are based in Asia, and offer some really competitive prices. My glasses took a long time to come, but this was due to my prescription, and I have to say, the customer service has been second to none. They answer queries really quickly, and have been really helpful.

I LOVE these glasses. They are big and obnoxious, but I just feel like they suit me, and I think they are most excellent. I recently worked at a big work event, processing people coming through the doors, and I got quite a few comments about my glasses (all positive of course – would anyone be mean enough to say anything nasty?).

I’m already in the market for another pair of glasses, simply because I like to have a lot of choice, but I think I’ll be hard pressed to find another pair that I like as much as these.

In case you’re interested, the frames that I chose are called Ansel, but they appear to no longer be available to purchase. However, the Josie frames are very similar, though slightly different colours, and are a bargainous $9.90.

7. Get new glasses


35 Before 35 ~ Throw a Gilmore Girls party


Remember back in November, when the Gilmore Girls revival was released on Netflix, and the world went Stars Hollow-mad? That would have been a great time to write a post about the Gilmore Girls party that I threw, when it was especially relevant. Cut to nine months later, when everyone is totally over it, especially given just how disappointing 75% of the revival was, and here I am, writing my post.

Hey, I never said that I was a good blogger.

I put this item on my list last year for the simple reason that I was so excited about the new episodes, and I knew I’d be watching them with my friends, and I thought it was the perfect opportunity to throw the type of party I have seen on Pinterest.

In the end, of course, it didn’t really turn out that way. The decorations weren’t Pinterest-worthy, and the new episodes were disappointing. I still managed to have a lovely time, however, because I got to spend time with my best friends, and we ate lots of food (we decided to cook a Thanksgiving dinner, except that just ended up being a roast dinner), and we got to go back to Stars Hollow.


As you should be able to tell from the photo, we dressed up – V was Paris, Anna was Rory, I was Luke, and Hannah was Sookie. Actually, V didn’t dress up as Paris, she didn’t really dress up at all, but we just decided that she could be Paris. My other friend Jen bought a chow dog toy and sort of came as Michel, but doesn’t really like having her photo taken, so we used Paw-Paw in the photo in her place!


Hannah went all out, ordering a smock and having Sookie’s name embroidered onto it! She did almost all of the cooking as well, so it was only right that she looked the part


I wish that my house didn’t look as messy as it does in this photo, but I had to share it simply because I love that there is a sign on the wall that says ‘No Cell Phones’ (lovingly created by me), and these three losers are sat on their phones!


Hand on heart, at this distance, I am mostly pretending that the revival episodes didn’t happen. The best bit, by far, was the scene in which Lorelai calls Emily and finally mourns Richard’s death properly. Everything else was something between don’t-really-care and I-can’t-believe-they-did-that. Some things* are just better left un-revived.

And Pinterest-worthy or not, I had a lovely time with my friends at my Gilmore Girls party!

*most things

12. Throw a Gilmore Girls party

Album of the Week 003 ~ Love and Hate by Michael Kiwanuka


Album : Love & Hate by Michael Kiwanuka

Release Date : July 2016

Singles : Black Man in a White World, Love & Hate, One More Night

My Favourite Tracks : Black Man in a White World, Cold Little Heart, The Final Frame

Album Notes
This album has popped up on so many ‘Best of 2016’ lists that I thought it was about time I had a listen. I know he is critically revered, but aside from the odd song on the radio, he isn’t someone I’ve listened to an awful lot.

This is a great album, as everyone is saying. Even for someone like me, who just listens to music but doesn’t necessarily understand it all that well, I can hear just how great this album is. The first track, lasting ten minutes, and going for five minutes before we even get any vocals from Kiwanuka, is stunning, and sets the tone for the rest of the album.

This is exactly the type of album that I started this challenge for, to push myself out of my comfort zone slightly, and listen to things that I wouldn’t usually reach for on Spotify.