Why Hate Valentine’s Day?

It’s that time of year again, when the entire world is split into three camps: the lovers, the haters and those who couldn’t care less. Despite the day’s focus on romance, there seems to be a huge amount of bitterness and hostility between the lovers and haters of Valentine’s Day, and I’ve never understood why. Personally, I love Valentine’s Day – I don’t go out of my way to plan something special every year, nor do I buy or expect expensive gifts and gestures. I just really like the idea of a holiday that’s sole focus is romance.

Matthew and I are both thrifty (well, you have to be when you’re a poor student) romantics at heart, so Valentine’s Day has never been a chore for us. Last year, we made a huge blanket fort, watched films and slept in the living room. It was memorable, cute as hell and it meant we could spend the whole night being totally together. Sure, we could have done that any other day of the year too, but our blanket fort felt like a great idea for Valentine’s Day. This year, we’re making our own pizzas, having a glass of wine and watching a film – for us, that’s perfect.

Valentine's Day Flowers - Why Hate Valentine's Day?

The busy parents, unhappy singletons and those who are struggling either physically or mentally, simply can’t and/or don’t want to celebrate, and of course I understand that. However, there are also some popular yet trivial problems that people tend to have with Valentine’s Day, and although I recognise them, I really do not understand them.

I love my partner every single day of the year, not just on Valentine’s Day:

Of course, me too! But, I also don’t see any harm in saying “Happy Valentine’s Day!” instead of “Morning!” when I wake up – either way, Matt still gets a kiss and a cuddle.

You can’t celebrate when you’re single:

Sure you can. Go see your mum or your grandma and, if you have some money, buy them a bunch of flowers. Celebrate with your single friends. Why not just have a night in, with your favourite food and favourite film? Valentine’s Day is about celebrating love, not just romantic love. Celebrate familial love, friendship and self-love.

It’s a day for couples to rub their relationships in other people’s faces:

Definitely not. If love, or seeing love in others, bothers you then you’re clearly going through some hardship that you need to take control of. If you’re not and simply seeing happy couples genuinely bothers you, you have issues and your hate should not be projected onto the happiness of others. That’s your problem, sort it out.

It’s just another money grabbing holiday:

Yep, probably, but who is making you spend money? Romance isn’t expensive gifts and extravagant date nights. It can be a homemade meals, or making your own Valentine’s Day cards. Self-love doesn’t have to be expensive either. No need for fancy spas: run yourself a bubble bath and paint your toe nails.

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There’s no need to hate Valentine’s Day. Even if you don’t celebrate, you have to admit, it’s a pretty cute idea. Love is in the air today, so don’t shoot it down.

What do you think of Valentine’s Day?

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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.

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

Merry Christmas!

Now it’s almost over, it’s safe to say my Christmas Eve was lovely. Normally, me and Matt don’t like to leave the comfort of our home on Christmas Eve (laziness plus antisocial, of course), but today was quite a busy day.

Christmas Decorations

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We had a bit of food shopping to do for Christmas morning’s breakfast and I wanted to buy myself some cosy Christmas pyjamas. That turned into a huge fail though. All shops had sold out. 😦 Despite this, having some fresh air was nice.

When we got home, I began preparing our Christmas dinner. It was actually our first vegetarian Christmas lunch, and it was insanely gorgeous. The mash and roast potatoes were the most incredible tasting mash and roast potatoes I have ever made in my life – I doubt I’ll ever be able to make them so tasty ever again!

Christmas Dinner

Afterwards, I swooned at Love Actually, and watched Elf (it definitely isn’t Christmas until you’ve watched Elf) whilst I painted my nails. They were the first Christmas films we sat down to watch together this holiday. Better late than never, of course! 🙂

It’s been a lovely day, full of food and smiles and cuddles. Bed time, soon! When we wake up, I’ll be making us tomato baked eggs with crusty bread to dip in for breakfast before we both head over to my parent’s house.

I hope you have a wonderful Christmas, every single one of you. Keep on smiling, and enjoy the holidays. ❤

This is my first Christmas as a blogger, and it reminded me how kind people can be. I’m not the most social of people in real life but it’s deeply lovely to see how friendly people can be when they try. I’m completely looking forward to my next year on WordPress!

Elf Christmas Film

Merry Christmas, lovelies!

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What are your plans for tomorrow?

-Morgan

20 Things That Make Me Happy During Winter

Tonight is the night!

Christmas Lights

It’s the official Christmas lights switch on in my city tonight, and as I was walking home from work the Christmas songs were booming, the Christmas lights were twinkling and the crowds were bustling – it’s safe to say, I’m completely soaking up the Christmas atmosphere this evening. Although they’re a little bit late this year, me and Matt are putting up our Christmas decorations tonight too.

As much as I love Autumn (and I mean, I really do love Autumn), it passes by so quickly and soon the beautifully coloured leaves are brown and crumbling, the colours fade, and nature goes to sleep. Then Winter arrives, and yes it’s less beautiful, and yes it’s colder, but there are endless reasons to smile.

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To celebrate, here are 20 things that make me happy during the Winter months:

  1. Christmas songs (I love them all)
  2. Fairy lights everywhere
  3. Poinsettia
  4. Big, hot meals
  5. Snow
  6. Buying new Christmas pyjamas for Christmas morning
  7. Scented candles
  8. The lovely mood people are in around Christmas time
  9. Christmas movies
  10. Early nights and spending so much more time snug as a bug
  11. “I’m a Celebrity, Get Me Out of Here”
  12. Lots of layered clothing and big coats to keep us warm
  13. Christmas snacks in bowls around the living room (is that just my family?)
  14. Wrapping and buying Christmas gifts
  15. Photographing Christmas lights, winter scenes and winter memories
  16. Not feeling guilty when you want to stay in, because it’s cold outside
  17. Fluffy socks every day
  18. Getting advent calenders for the cats
  19. Late night shopping (the atmosphere always puts me in a Christmas mood)
  20. My beautiful, warm, cosy flat where I can come home every evening to my gorgeous Matthew, and little fur babies ❤

I’m so excited! The Christmas atmosphere continues to build for me up until the big day, unlike most people who say that if they start to get excited this early, it’s less exciting for them when Christmas eventually arrives.

This turned out to be quite a soppy post… but Winter is lovely – I’m glad it’s starting to arrive.


What are you favourite things about the Winter months? Do you enjoy the Christmas atmosphere?

-Morgan