Currently, I Am… | #10

Hi, friends! Ah, I’ve missed you. It’s been almost a whole month since I’ve shown my face on my lovely little blog, but it’s definitely been well deserved. The first few weeks of 2017 were filled with coursework and university deadlines, so The Rose Quartz had to take a bit of a backseat. Don’t worry though, I thought about you every day!

After that, I had a few days of beautiful nothingness and relaxation with Matthew, before me, him, his brother and his girlfriend went off for a 4-day bender to Butlins for the Giants of Rock festival. That, I tell you, was flipping fantastic and I’ll be talking a lot more about that the next time I’m around! We saw some incredible bands and some really impressive musicians – it was mind blowing, really. As well as enjoying lots of music, the nearby beach was just beautiful. We spent a lot of time walking around and taking pictures – you know what I’m like.

Butlins Minehead

My “Currently, I Am” series is always a great post for when I return from a pretty long break. I haven’t posted one of these since November, just after Trump managed to find his way into an incredible, ridiculous position of power. Coincidentally, this one comes just after his inauguration and the reinforcement that his new found power is taking America down a horribly familiar, slippery slope.

Anyway, let’s not talk politics. Let’s have a bit of a catch up!

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Currently, I am feeling

…oh, well, a lot of different feelings actually. I’m gunna quickly take you through them, otherwise this could go on for a very long time. I’m feeling excited and nervous about my wedding day – I get married in November and there’s a lot of exciting plans to be made! I’m feeling anxious, unprepared and lost with regards to my future career prospects – I’m graduating in the summer, with no passion for my degree or field of work in any way. I’m feeling tired, because sleep is alluding me – that’s probably because of all these FEELS.

Dan Feels Gif

Currently, I am watching

…Daredevil S2. We recently finished Jessica Jones too, which was unbelievable. Kilgrave is one of my all time favourite villains! He’s easily Marvel’s best on-screen baddie. His ability to manipulate people, simply by talking to them, is a really clever way of avoiding “not-another-fight-scene”. Daredevil is also picking up. The first season started off incredibly dull, picking up towards the end. The second season started a little slow too actually, but it quickly sorted itself out and now me and Matthew are both really enjoying it.

Since my last catch up post, Westworld finished too. That was one of the best bits of television I’ve ever seen. Highly, highly recommend.

Currently, I am reading

…The Great Gatsby. Can you believe I’ve never read it? I also recently read Tim Burton’s The Melancholy Death of Oyster Boy and Other Stories which was a super interesting and super quick read. It’s worth it though. The title story was one of the longer short stories/poems in the collection and it actually made me feel pretty sad. Poor, Oyster Boy.

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How have you been? What have you been up to recently?

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You can read my previous post here.

Photographs are my own. © Morgan Mills

Freedom!

“It’s Friday, Friday. Gotta get down on Friday!”

Although that’s the cheesiest, and possibly the worst, song of all time, it super describes my feeling right now. It’s Friday! Not only is it the start to a weekend (which is always a bonus on it’s own), it’s the start to my two week break from work. I’m not going on holiday, but it’s going to be an amazing couple of weeks. I almost ran home I was so excited.

In the first week, Matthew is graduating and then turns 22 a few days afterwards. That’s definitely going to be a busy week. He doesn’t seem particularly fussed about his graduation but I’m super excited. I’m so proud, I just can’t wait to see him in his robes (or “dress”, as Matt said). On his birthday, we’re going to the beach. Fingers crossed for some nice weather, please! Our plan is to get a bus up to Bridlington, mooch around the beach, play in the amusements and have chips and beer in this fantastic pub that overlooks the sea.

Bridlington Beach Yorkshire 2015

Summer, 2015. We took the bus to Bridlington and went on a Pirate Ship!

In my second week off work, me and Matt will be redeeming a weekly bus pass we have that gives us unlimited travel around Yorkshire on Yorkshire buses. We’ll be visiting countryside, castles and villages galore. Maybe even some pubs and I wouldn’t say no to a cheeky hike if we happened upon one. I’ve planned for some fantastic places and I’m sure there will be a lot of lovely “My Day in Photos” posts coming up in the near future (don’t tell me you’re not looking forward to them!). Last year, me and Matt did this whole bus-hopping thing around Yorkshire for the first time and it was possibly the best week we’ve ever had together. I love travelling around England, even though I’m a newbie – me and Matt are hoping to move to Canada in a couple of years, but leaving the English countryside behind is a tough one. I’ll miss it!

There’s definitely going to be time for a lot of blogging, gaming and reading which is always a great thing too. My Goodreads to-read list is growing at an alarming rate and my Xbox One has been whispering at me in my sleep, so… I think it’s about time I cracked down on all my forgotten hobbies.

I’ll see you around!

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Do you have any plans for the summer?

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You can read my previous post here.

-Morgan

Photographs are my own. © Morgan Mills.

If I Could Do Anything

The list of things I’d like to achieve in life is quickly growing.

I’m at that tipping point between young adult and proper adult, where my life is pretty much completely put together but also kind of not. My future isn’t solidly figured out: I still have the chance to do something amazing and unconventional or I could easily stick to my comfort zone and sail through life without unnecessary obstacles. After graduation, all of my dreams and goals in life could dwindle away into fairytales that I think of longingly in the bath with a glass of wine when I’m 30. Obviously, like everyone else, I don’t want that.

Flowers on the Beach

Honestly, I have too many dreams. Is that a thing? I know it’s pretty unrealistic for me to achieve everything I want in life, but I’d like to hope that the future doesn’t stomp on all of my life goals. That would be nice.

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So, if money, time and realism was no object, here’s what I’d like to achieve during my lifetime:

Animal Sanctuaries:

That’s plural, yep.

Initially, I’d love to open my first sanctuary for rescued farm animals – for example, those that have nowhere else to go but the slaughter house, unwanted pet pigs from owners who thought they were teacup sized, skeletal horses left tied up at the roadside and featherless, abused caged hens. I’d happily spend my time and money looking after all of them myself, but running it as a charity with volunteers and staff would be ideal.

A sanctuary for stray cats and dogs is also something I’d love to set up in the future. I can’t stand the thought of those precious little angels out in the cold and rain. Somewhere safe, somewhere warm and a little food to eat is all they need, and I’d love to provide that!

Professional Photographer:

My ultimate career goal right here… Photography is such a huge passion of mine, as you probably already know, but I can’t ever see me having the time in the future to seriously pursue it. At this point in life, I don’t even care about the money. The entire process is something that makes me swell with happiness. I just love it.

If I could choose, though, candid wedding/pet/on-location event photography would be something I’d love to do. I feel as if that would leave me time to enjoy nature and landscape photography as much as I do nowadays anyway, providing prints of my work to those who enjoy it.

My heart is melting. That’s the dream.

Etsy Boss:

This is something I’ve been contemplating for a couple of years now. I’m sure I’ll get around it eventually. I like to think it’s a win-win situation – I’ll always be a crafty and creative person, and I’ll always be creating new things so why not see if someone else out there wants one?

I’m determined, passionate, creative and organised – I’d like to think I have all of the skills needed to provide cute goods for others. Honestly, this seems like one of the more achievable dreams if I put my heart into it.

Travel the World:

“If I could do anything…”, well, how about not having a fear of flying? That would be something incredible to overcome. If I wasn’t scared, money wasn’t something I had to worry about and I didn’t have responsibilities back in the real word, travelling the world would be something I’d love to do before I die. It’s on almost everyone’s bucket list, and I’m really not surprised.

Thinking about it, we’re pretty cut off from all the different cultures, food, people and scenery that’s scattered all over the world. If you can’t travel (and there’s many reasons people can’t), then you’ll never ever get to experience those things. Having the chance to see it all with your own eyes and touch everything new with your own fingers seems pretty fantastic to me.

Related: If I Wasn’t Scared of Travelling…

Move to Italy:

Again, if money was no object and I had no responsibilities or fears or worries, then Italy is where I’d be right now.

This is a disappointing dream because it’s something so magical to me, but almost completely impossible. You couldn’t pay me enough to get on a plane right now, so technically I can’t get there – I don’t see this changing any time soon either. Uprooting the cats makes me feel terrible too. Would they like the climate? Would they be okay during travelling and quarantine? Ah, I can’t even imagine it. Home, family and familiar places are my comfort blankets. It’d be tough to have them taken away.

It’s a shame that those things would get in the way, because living in Italy – preferably near Lake Garda – would be spectacular. It seems like the perfect combination of the historical and cultural background, romance, relaxation, sun (but not too much) and people. Beautiful!

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Of course, there are many more things in life that I’d love to take part in during my lifetime if I had no restrictions, but these are the ones I dream about the most!

If you could do anything, absolutely anything, what would it be?

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You can read my previous post here.

-Morgan

My Day in Photos | Windermere

Over the weekend, me and Matt decided to go on a last minute coach trip that would take us up to both Skipton and to Windermere. Because we don’t drive, coach trips are just perfect for us. The price is inclusive of travel, accommodation, food and, in cases when you’re heading somewhere with an entry fee such as the Harry Potter Studios, ticket prices!

Neither of us had ever been to Skipton before and we’d never visited the Lake District as a couple so this trip seemed ideal. We both absolutely love the outdoors. I can’t deal with the beauty of it all, and get way too over excited. It baffles me how many people don’t feel the same way about nature! On the coach down to Windermere, the views were insane. Mountains and snowy peaks were just there, yet the majority of the coach weren’t even phased. Unbelievable. I guess that’s an issue for another day though!

Anyway, in preparation, we went big. We wanted to make the most of this trip, and we weren’t going to let the cold or the weight of our hand luggage get in our way so we stocked up on warm jumpers and a backpack to hold all of my camera gear. Luckily, the weather was beautiful so the jumpers weren’t completely necessary but the backpack was a life saver. You’d be surprised how heavy cameras and lenses are!

When we arrived in Windermere, we pulled up by the lake (the largest in England) and were met with mountain views, the giant lake full of boats, endless trees and a bright blue sky filled with cartoon-style fluffy, white clouds. We were so lucky to have visited on such a nice day.

Lake District WindermereLake District Windermere

With only 4 hours to make the most of our time there, we forfeited a trip on the lake for a walk in the lakeside woods instead. It gave us more privacy and the time to capture some photographs and explore nature properly. We couldn’t believe our eyes to be honest, and we both felt certain that this is the place we need to end up. It felt like home. My heart was just aching with a need to live there. One day for sure.

Lake District WindermereLake District WindermereLake District Windermere

Considering we had such a short amount of time in this beautiful part of England, we definitely made the most of it. After our walk along the lake, we had a walk in the bustling town of Bowness, ate our lunch in a lakeside restaurant and had an ice-cream with the swans. It was really, really great.

Lake District WindermereLake District WindermereLake District WindermereLake District WindermereLake District WindermereLake District WindermereLake District Windermere

I was even lucky enough to find a very busy bird feeder filled with lots of tiny woodland birds! I think (because I’m certainly not a bird expert, but I did a bit of research on them) I saw a nuthatch,  a great tit, a blue tit, a robin and a wren which was a bit speedy to get a good photograph of.

I think I have a new hobby though…

Lake District Windermere Bird WatchingLake District Windermere Bird WatchingLake District Windermere Bird WatchingLake District Windermere Bird WatchingLake District Windermere Bird WatchingLake District Windermere Bird Watching

So, yeah, it was amazing.

Lake District Windermere

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Have you ever been to the Lake District?

I hope you like my photos! I do.

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You can read my previous post here.

-Morgan

Photographs are my own. © Morgan Mills.

(The image size has been decreased, a lot, on each photograph to speed up loading times when you open up the post.)

Where I’ve Been Around The World

If you’ve been around since the beginning, you’ve probably picked up on my fear of travelling. Planes, boats and even push bikes… you name it, I’m just a big baby when it comes to leaving the comfort of my own home.

Although I’d like to travel a bit more in the future, right now I’m an anxious mess and until I’m comfortable leaving my flat and walking around my own home town without wanting to tear up and run home, the rest of the world can wait just a little bit longer.

Places I'd Love To Visit

The places I’d love to go if I wasn’t such a scaredy cat

Related: If I Wasn’t Scared of Travelling

However, in the past, I have travelled a little bit. A lot of family holidays were based in the UK, which is most likely why I’m completely in love with the idea of travelling our gorgeous little island before venturing out any further. We saw some beautiful things. Me and Matt even took the plunge and went on our first major holiday abroad together in 2014, which was a huge step for us as a couple and for someone who’s scared of flying!

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So, Where Have I Been?

England:

I was debating whether or not to include England in this post, as it seems a bit obvious, but travelling around the country is one of my favourite things and I have hundreds of fond memories with my mum, dad and brother from our holidays. There’s still so much to see, too.

I’ll always favour England over anywhere else – not only because it’s unbelievable how many of these stunning beauties are so close to home, but because I’m completely sentimental and it reminds me of all the great places I went with my family.

Bobby Bee's Camping Yorkshire

Camping was our jam. Bobby Bee’s, April 2011.

Mothershipton's Cave Yorkshire

My mum was always holding the camera. Mother Shipton’s Cave, June 2011.

Devon Family Holiday

Devon was gorgeous. It was an insanely long car ride, but the views were worth it. Devon, July 2011

The Hole of Horcum

We went on walks and hikes. Going right into the heart of The Hole of Horcum was a great one. Hole of Horcum, August 2011.

Forge Valley

I could go on and on and on… Forge Valley, July 2012

Wales:

As above, I umm-ed and ahh-ed about including Wales, but I guess it’s not England, so it’s not like I’m being completely cheeky.

Even though I absolutely love Wales, I’ve only ever been once. It was a family holiday to Mumbles, near Swansea Bay, in July 2009. It rained like mad and you couldn’t get signal (fair one, we were practically in the middle of nowhere), but it was so insanely pretty. Me and my brother spent a lot of time together on this holiday, and we’d go down to the empty beaches and take photos. I even saw scuba divers going into the sea, which was a first for me.

Mumbles Lighthouse

Source: Trek Earth

I’ve since told Matt about this holiday, and he likes the idea of it just as much as I do, so we’re planning to go again at some point.

Note: I was going to share my own photographs… but then I saw the quality of the images from my 2009 camera phone and decided against sharing those pixelated demons where our faces aren’t even decipherable!

France:

When I was very young, so young I don’t even remember, I went to France with my family, on a trip to Disneyland. Does it count if you can’t really remember? I’m going to say yes.

The only thing I can remember is one particular trip through a maze… Up until a few years ago, I actually still used to have nightmares about it. I remember a giant Queen of Hearts peering over a huge maze bush, and a really horrible booming voice. I vaguely remember my mum telling me to shut my eyes, saying “don’t look” because I was scared and crying. Who knows? Maybe my infant brain was playing tricks on me, but I’m surprised I love Alice in Wonderland so much still to this day. It sounds terrifying!

Belgium:

In October 2007, I went on a school trip to visit a lot of WW1 memorials in Belgium. Still to this day, it was one of the most amazing things I’ve done and I can’t believe I have the opportunity to see something so incredibly moving.

Vimy Ridge Canadian Memorial

Source: CWGC

I visited the Thiepval Memorial to the Missing of the Somme, Tyne Cot Memorial, Canadian National Vimy Memorial and Memin Gate (to watch the Last Post Ceremony). Just, wow. Because it was almost a decade a go (well, that’s the first time I’ve been able to say that… I feel old), the quality of the images are horrendous and I’m hoping to revisit all the memorials with Matthew and my camera.

Portugal:

The family holiday to Portugal was another that I can’t quite remember. I’ve seen photographs, that are stored away in a dusty red photo album somewhere at my mum’s house but I can only remember random bits of information.

I remember my obsession with Pokémon (especially Pikachu) was intense at this point in my life. I remember these weird boiled sweets that were in separate wrappers, but they were all attached and were as long as snakes. That’s about it. Again, I’ve heard stories and it sounded great… apart from the whole nearly-drowned brother story (he didn’t, he’s good now).

Tunisia:

The furthest place I’ve ever travelled to is Tunisia (before everything kicked off, the world went to shit and the next door resort was victim of a terrorist attack. Sad times…). It was a bloody experience, I’ll tell you that. I’ve never been so stressed out in my entire life but I’m glad we did it.

Once the horrible plane airport fiasco was over (we arrived too early, and didn’t sleep for nearly 40 hours), once the hysterical plane journey was over, and after the locals had stopped trying to steal our luggage, it was all good. The resort was stunning, and everyone was insanely friendly. We met some wonderful people, who we still talk to to this day too.

We had a private beach, and that is what made the holiday for me. The resort would hold games, like boules and mini golf, or we could just sunbathe and enjoy the many, many free drinks allowed in the all-inclusive wonder. It was gorgeous! One of my photographs actually won us £1000 in Thomas Cook vouchers in a competition too, so I’m definitely glad we went.

Tunisia Holiday

The view from our balcony. It wasn’t even Spring and we had skies like that. Very lucky! March, 2014

Tunisia Holiday

The apparently award-winning photograph of the private beach. It was beautiful. March, 2014

Tunisia Holiday

Playing games on the beach with some great people. March, 2014

Tunisia Holiday

This is bloody early March… I can’t even imagine what August looks like. March, 2014

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I couldn’t really ask for much more. I’ve been very lucky to see such lovely things, to have a family who showed me England’s beauty and a fiancé who was willing to put up with my crying in order to find ourselves on the continent of Africa.

Where is the best place you’ve travelled, and what’s the furthest?

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You can read my previous post here.

-Morgan

Mince Pies and Pokémon

With today being my last day of work before Christmas, and with the company preparing to shut down for Christmas break, today was a strange and speedy day.

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I was, of course, bursting at the seams with excitement and relief that this was my final day for a whole two weeks! I’m definitely in need of a good sleep, and I just knew that the Christmas ‘feel’ would arrive once work was out of the way. I just kept counting down the hours…

“In 8/7/6/5/4/3/2/1 hours time, I’ll be on my Christmas holiday and then it’s officially Christmas” -Me, every single hour, all day.

Everybody else in the office didn’t book next week of work and will still be working until the 23rd, but not me! I doubt my little body and mind could have managed. You know when you’re just ready for a break?

I could feel my blood fizzing with anticipation. There wasn’t any work for me to complete, apart from my own personal, scholarship project. That, though, can be done any time, anywhere so after an hour or so adding a few more features to the program, I just left it for the day.

Instead, the whole office joined together in a festive flurry of Christmas jumpers, music, food and several games of Pokémon (the trading card game, of course)… yep, us Computer Science folk are definitely living up to the reputation right now.

 

So what am I so excited about?

Over the Christmas holiday, I will be spending every waking second I can in the company of my ridiculously wonderful, handsome and caring Matt. We’ll be spending time with family, eating food, lots of drink, blowing the dust of my camera and taking it for a spin, going to museums and parks and playing games. Everything we can’t do whilst we’re ‘adulting’ in the every day 9-5 fiasco people like to call life. And I’m so, so excited.

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Are you breaking off for Christmas this year, or are you working over the holidays? 

Merry Christmas, lovelies! 

-Morgan

 

 

It’s Beginning To Look a Lot Like Christmas!

When I was a kiddie, I was jealous that my little brother (born Christmas Day) had the Christmas tree up on his birthday yet it would never be on display on mine (early November). Fast forward a few years, my parents gave in to my demands and we started putting the Christmas tree and decorations up on or around my birthday every year!

Although I don’t live at my parent’s home any more, the tradition lives on. Last night, the official city Christmas lights were turned on in the city centre and it hugely reignited my Christmas spark… and poof, the decorations are up at my home! We’ve been singing Christmas songs all night. If it’s early enough for the full city council, then it’s early enough for me!

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With us having a relatively blue-themed living room, we like quite neutral decorations – we fill the room with silvers, golds, black, white and the odd bit of blue. Very pretty!

Christmas Decorations
Christmas Decorations

Christmas Decorations

What’s Christmas without stockings and fairy lights?

Christmas Decorations

Christmas Decorations

A bauble me and Matt bought in 2013 to celebrate our first Christmas in our new home

Christmas Decorations

Little Santa passed down through the family


Christmas is a lovely, happy time of year – you can’t blame us for getting over-excited!

-Morgan