Archive of ‘35 Before 35’ category

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.

Album of the Week 002 ~ A Very Kacey Christmas by Kacey Musgraves


Album : A Very Kacey Christmas by Kacey Musgraves

Release Date : October 2016

My Favourite Tracks : Present Without a Bow, Ribbons and Bows, I Want a Hippopotamus for Christmas

Album Notes

A Very Kacey Christmas is actually the album that gave me the idea for doing this album a week blog post – I saw that she was releasing it and I saved it for the last week in November to listen to it!

It’s an excellent addition to the plethora of Christmas albums that have come before it. From the seasonal standards like Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas, Let It Snow and Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer, to the original songs written by Kacey herself. These are some of my favourites on the album – I love the classics but the new songs are great. Present Without a Bow features Leon Bridges, a gospel and soul singer whose voice is just a delight (I’ll be exploring his albums throughout the year, I’m sure). A Willie Nice Christmas is a fun track featuring Willie Nelson, while Christmas Makes Me Cry is a more melancholy look at the festive season. I Want a Hippopotamus for Christmas is the earworm from the album, and it’s a lot of fun!

Kacey Musgraves is a country singer, but to me, this isn’t a country Christmas album per se. It seems to be just be a collection of songs that Kacey loves, along with those she has written for the album. It’s helping to get me in the festive spirit, and I know that some of these tracks will be upgraded to my regular Christmas playlist for many years to come.

35 Before 35 Part III


{Part I} {Part II} {Part III}

26. Read more diverse authors
I very rarely include anything quite so vague on my birthday list – this is the kind of thing that can usually be found on my New Year’s in-lieu-of-resolutions list. But I didn’t want to put ‘Read xx amounts of books by people of colour’, because it didn’t feel right. Instead, in an attempt to diversity my reading, I’m going to try and seek out, in the first place, non-white authors, and I’ll have to judge at the end of the year if I can tick it off. (I know, by the way, that diversity doesn’t just apply to skin colour, but I think that this is the area in which my reading is most in need of a shake-up.)

27. Read ten novels on which films are based
This has been on a list before, but funnily enough, I didn’t tick it off (the sheer number of things over the years that I haven’t ticked off is astonishing). I’m going for it again, and I am hoping to include some books which have big screen adaptations on their way.

28. Start writing my novel
This has been on just about every list since I started making them, but of course, it doesn’t happen because I’m the laziest person you could ever wish to know. For my birthday I received a workbook that promises to help me, so with the seed of the idea that I have for a story, I’m hoping to give it a go very soon!

29. Visit ten bookshops
Another one that has been on the list before, and I made a good start on it, but didn’t tick it off. Bookshops are my happy place, so it’s no chore to visit them and blog about them.

30. Visit Westminster Abbey
I’ve never been to Westminster Abbey, despite my dad working there from time to time. I’m going to do it this year, I promise!

31. Visit Bognor Regis
I have a very good friend who lives in Bognor, and has done for some time, and yet I still haven’t been to see her. Time for a visit to the seaside.

32. Go to five book events
I love book events, big or small, so whether it’s a local library talk about a book, or a big book launch, I’m hoping to fit in at least five over the next twelve months.

33. Film a second a day
I tried this last year, and got as far as blogging about December and January, and filming February and uploading it but never blogging about it. They are amongst my favourite things to watch, a real snapshot into my world, and I wish I had kept up with it. So I’m adding it to this year’s list again, in the hope that I can keep up with it.

34. Visit Gold Hill
I have rather a lot of ‘Go to…’ items on this year’s list, but this is a last-minute one that changed locations three times before I settled! Gold Hill is in Shaftesbury, which is in Dorset, and it’s most famous as the ‘Hovis Hill’ (from the advert), but it’s also where my granddad was born, and despite this amazing familial connection, I’ve never been (unlike most of the rest of my family). So I’m determined to head there this year, even if it’s for a fleeting visit.

35. Complete a cross-stitch 
This has been on my list before, and I’ve ticked it off before, but I want to do it again. I love cross stitching, I just need to be realistic about my ambitions – I tend to think too big and then never find the time to complete them!

So that’s my full list – there are rather a lot of repeats from previous years, but thinking of 35 things is really, really hard! I say it every year, but I’m really hoping that this year I’ll get through a few more. We will see; I’ll keep you updated!


35 Before 35 ~ Part II


On with the list!

{Part I} {Part II} {Part III}

14. Knit a piece of clothing
As I actually achieved my knitting goal last year, I thought it was time to step it up slightly, and actually try and make something I can wear. I’m thinking a cardigan or a jumper, rather than a scarf or a hat!

15. Watch ten films from 1982
This was on last year’s list, but although I made a list of films that I could watch, I didn’t actually get around to watching any of them. I want them to be films that I haven’t seen before, which adds another level of difficulty, but I’m definitely going to tick this one off this year!

16. Read ten non-fiction books
Another one from last year that didn’t happen, but I have done it in a previous birthday list, and I know it’s entirely possible. I am always seeing non-fiction books that I want to read, but rarely get around to them.

17. Visit the Warner Bros. Studio Tour
I’ve been to the studio tour before, but that was before my friend Hannah had watched the series, and so now I want to go back with her! There’s also a lot of stuff that wasn’t there when I went the first time, so it will be a new experience for me as well.

18. Save up for and buy a camera
I pretty much use my phone exclusively for photos, and while that’s fine for snapshots, I would like a nice camera as well. My dad has one that he lends me from time to time, but I want one for my own. It probably won’t be a big old DSLR, but I want something better than a point and click. This will take some saving, which is fine, as I love saving up for something I really want.

19. Make some pin displays
My latest obsession is enamel pins; I follow so many designers on Instagram and I end up buying them with a couple of clicks – I probably need to stop doing that. But for the ones I do have, and the future ones I will inevitably buy, I need somewhere better to store them, as they are currently just in a little box on my dressing table. I have ideas, so I’ll hopefully be implementing them very soon.

20. Go to the theatre
Another slight cheat on this one, as I have tentative plans for a theatre trip in the next few months. Ideally, I would like to be heading off to the Palace Theatre to see the Cursed Child, but that probably isn’t going to happen.

21. Make a photo display
Last year I put ‘Make my bedroom walls pretty’ on my list, and ticked it off, just about. Now I want to arrange my photos in some sort of display on my wall that looks good, though I’m not sure exactly what I want to do. I’m hitting up Pinterest for ideas!

22. Have a day out in ‘Hidden’ London
I was scouring lists of things to do in London, and it occurred to me that I don’t explore ‘hidden’ London very often – there are loads of things on different lists that are super cool, and completely ignored by me. So I’m going to take a day and just look around some slightly different areas of the city.

23. Visit Bettys in York
This is one that I’m probably not going to achieve – I know that’s a defeatist attitude right at the outset, but I’ve put it on because I really want to do it, without thinking that I actually will. Bloggers are always going to Bettys, and it looks so nice and quaint and blogger-ish that I want to go. If I’m in the area, I’m heading straight there.

24. Crochet a granny square
‘Learn to crochet’ pops up again and again on my lists, so this time I’m going for a very achievable aim – just to crochet one granny square.

25. Have watched 40 of the Film4 Top 50 Musicals list
So far, I’ve watched 22 of this list, so watching another 18 shouldn’t be too difficult. Normally, what happens is that I leave this goal until the end of October, and then have to watch all 18 inside two weeks. I’m going to try not to do that this time, and with subscriptions to rather a lot of film services, I’m hoping to get this ticked off soon!

I haven’t managed to divide this list very equally – I have just ten more goals to reveal, so Part III will be up tomorrow!


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