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

My Year in Review #3/3 | Photographs

They say a picture speaks a thousand words… Throughout 2016, I took over 5,000 of them.

Despite how overwhelmingly rubbish this year was, when I look back on all of these beautiful photographs, I can’t help but feel thankful that some good came out of it. I saw some wonderful things, I made a lot of life-long memories and I grew hugely as a person. Yes, a lot of these memories were made as a way to distract myself from the big black dog but that doesn’t make those memories any less important!

So, to recognise all of the good that came from this year, I’m going to focus on those best bits in my final instalment of ‘my year in review’.

Here’s my best bits of 2016, summarised in photographs!

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Happy new year to all of my lovely followers, friends and family. 

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Photographs are my own. © Morgan Mills

Getting Festive in the Studio

Can you believe that it’s the first of December? I still don’t have my Christmas decorations up and I don’t actually see it happening any time soon. For someone who normally has their Christmas decorations up in the first week of November, this is a bit of a big deal!

Despite the lack of festivities in my personal life, my photography studio been been regularly bringing a snippet of Christmas Day into my home.

Recently, I had the sweetest little elf visit for a Christmas photo-shoot, and once you see his little smile, you won’t blame me for wanting to share these with you. With his little pointy ears, his festive cheer and his childish wonder, he brightened up my home. I admit, I did feel a festive twinkle whilst photographing this beautiful baby in his little elf outfit. I’m only human!

The Rose Quartz Photography Christmas PhotoshootThe Rose Quartz Photography Christmas Photoshoot

Once he left and the Christmas props had been packed away, however, all signs of Christmas cheer vanished into thin air and the reminder that Christmas is almost upon us made me cringe. I promise, I’m not always this much of a Grinch. This year has been tough – really, unforgettably tough – so mustering up a bit of happiness for something that 2016 has to offer me is proving a lot harder than I thought it would!

The solution: lots of Christmas photo-shoots!

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If you’d like to have a look at my photography page on Facebook, you have find me here.

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Photographs are my own. © Morgan Mills

I’m Getting Married!

Our engagement story is a sweet one. Despite months of hypothetically talking about it, the whole thing was actually a massive surprise to me.

After spending the afternoon of my birthday being pampered with my mum – we both had a massage and our nails done at a salon – I head home to spend the rest of the day and night with Matthew. He met me at the car (with an umbrella because it was raining) and he was dressed up in his fanciest shirt, but I still didn’t realise anything was different. He’s always pretty well dressed anyway.

When I walked into our living room, “our song” was already playing and the cats looked a bit coy – they had new, light purple collars on with bells. Matt didn’t like the idea of dressing himself up without dressing up our girls. I presumed, at this point, that this was just an extra special birthday treat. He handed me a birthday gift, which I opened. It was a beautifully bound, golden edged collection of Edgar Allan Poe’s tales and poems. As you can imagine, I loved that.

He then passed me another gift. So, I’m sat there thinking ah, no, stop spoiling me! I’m already cooing to the max about “our song” playing in the background. I open up this second present, and it’s a collection of love poems. How adorable… Matthew tells me to flick to a particular page and there, cut open in the centre of the book, is the message “will you marry me?”

I couldn’t believe it. I transformed into ultimate girl-mode and just stared at him – wide-eyed – for an unreasonable amount of time. Honestly, I thought it was a weird joke. We’re a pretty progressive couple, in the scheme of things, and I just presumed we’d one day say to each other “so, we’re gonna get married soon, right?” We were already practically married anyway. This, though, wow. It was honestly one of the most romantic, memorable moments of my life. He put so much thought and effort and secrecy into the whole thing. I knew he loved me anyway, but understanding the time that someone puts into something is beautiful.

I'm Getting Married Engagement News

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After a lot of hypothetical plans and dreams (and two years later!), we recently and finally booked our dream wedding venue. Dream wedding venue isn’t even an over-exaggeration – when we visited, a very long time ago, we didn’t think we’d ever be able to book this place in time for our own wedding. It’s a beautiful country house, a little on the outskirts of our home city. It really is something special.

I'm Getting Married Engagement News

So, it’s official! Me and Matthew will be getting married on the 26th November 2017. I honestly cannot control my excitement and I’ll be talking about this for the whole year.

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Obviously, we’re both so excited! We’ve been planning this for ages and for it to finally be happening is just fantastic. 

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Photographs are my own. © Morgan Mills

Treat Yo’ Self Sundays

If you’re now completely in the mood to watch Parks and Recreation, my job here is done. Be my friend. If not, you should really watch that show. It’s the best combination of comedy, life lessons and a giant dose of realism.

Anyway, I’m sure you’ll agree that Sundays are really wonderful. They’re either full of absolutely nothing or absolutely everything but, either way, they’re enjoyable. Yes, you’re a tiny step closer back to work on Monday but at least you spent it doing something you wanted, right?

Treat yo' Self

Sunday evenings are the perfect excuse to treat yourself.

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Eat lots of chocolate:

I don’t know about you but there’s a giant bar of Dairy Milk and a full box of Cadbury’s Heroes in my fridge, waiting for me. I don’t often eat chocolate but when I do get that sweet tooth… God help us all.

Take a bubble bath:

Melt your worries away. Don’t give me that “men don’t take bubble baths” malarkey, either. Everyone can enjoy a good soak. Whether you do that in a bright pink bath tub full of glitter, well, that’s your choice.

Read a book:

Immerse yourself in one of your favourite fictional worlds. Personally, getting tucked up in bed with a good book is practically unbeatable on the scale of relaxation.

Try to stop worrying:

Now, I say try because, understandably, we all have our own shit going on. But, if there’s any chance of you treating yourself (mentally or materialistically) then you should probably just breath and let it go – even if that’s only for the evening.

Get yourself some fresh air:

As tempting as it is to stay indoors all day, with the curtains closed as if the outside world doesn’t exist (or is that just me?), it’s well worth taking a stroll outdoors on a Sunday. This is even more of a cause in the autumn, when those Sunday afternoons are just perfectly crisp.

 

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Treat yo’ self, everyone.

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-Morgan

Photographs are my own. © Morgan Mills

5 Very Special Years

An education, a home, two furry babies, an engagement, lots of love and five years later, me and Matthew are still inseparable. It’s our 5 year anniversary today!

I was lucky enough to meet somebody so very special when I was young, and I’ll always be grateful of those extra few years we had together before we were “grown-ups”. Meeting as teens, we grew up together, we worked together, we made decisions together and we moved on to university together. He’s my best friend in the whole world and, even though he’s sat right in front of me playing on his game, simply writing about him fills me with butterflies.

Five Year Anniversary Engagement Ring

We celebrated our anniversary early this year because, with it falling on a Monday, we didn’t want to make plans straight after work and be all tired out! Over the weekend, we went on a 12-mile hike, we sat by the sea at the seaside and we spent the day in the bustling city of York – as you can probably guess, I had an absolutely amazing time and it’s going to be a memorable one! Five years though… that’s a biggie so it’s worth a little extra effort. Tonight, I’m making us a vegetarian spaghetti bolognese and we’re going to make each other an anniversary card with a glass of wine (or two). That sounds like a cute little night to me!

Five Year Anniversary

Pink Hearts

I can’t fully put into words how beautiful he is to me, inside and out. He’s kind to me, he loves me so much, he’s hilarious, he respects me, he’s proud of me and he’s gorgeous. Happy anniversary, sweetie.

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I’m sorry about this very soppy post (not really!)

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-Morgan

Photographs are my own. © Morgan Mills

Why I Love Blogging

It’s definitely starting to feel a lot like autumn. I think, for me, that’s because I spent the day in my pyjamas, I painted my nails a deep red colour, I have scented candles burning and I’ve had countless cups of tea. Because of that, I’ve spent the day thinking a lot about my blog.

I began blogging just over a year ago. Autumn came around a lot sooner last year than it has this time and blogging was the perfect hobby for me to take on as the nights became colder, darker and cosier. I guess that’s why an autumnal feel in the air made me reminisce about my early blogging days. Since then, I’ve definitely changed but my love for it has only grown. It’s now just a part of who I am.

Why I Love Blogging

Lots of people blog for lots of different reasons. Here are mine:

I use my blog to channel my creativity

If you’ve stopped by before, I’m sure you’ve picked up on my love for arts, crafts and anything else considered creative. I love it all. I’ve dipped my toe into every possible nook in the world of creativity (or at least all the ones I can think of, anyway). Some stick, such as drawing and photography, and some don’t – but that’s fine.

My blog is a place where I can share all of this. It gives me a bit of a purpose. “Oh, if I finish this drawing soon I can share it on my blog” or “I mentioned that I’d like to make a skirt. I’ll get started” are fantastic blogging prompts for me.

I use my blog to meet new people

My blog has allowed me to meet people all over the world. I’ve had to chance to talk to people from Ukraine, India, Canada, Austria and, in one way or another, we’re similar. Meeting in the blogosphere means that readers generally share common interests, whether that’s reading, writing, photography, film… It doesn’t matter because there’s always something to talk about.

I use my blog to share my photography

Photography, for me, is one of those things in life that makes everything feel okay. I feel happy when I’m taking photographs. I concentrate so intensely on what I’m doing that any negativity in my life, however big or small, fades away into nothingness. I don’t have anywhere to properly share my photography work, so my blog helped me fill a hole. I’m thinking about creating a Facebook page simply for my photography – what do you think?

I use my blog to document my life

Having somewhere to write about my life is what catapulted this little piece of the internet into creation. It’s something I’ve always done. I’ve had countless diaries for me to write about what I’ve been up to and how I’m feeling. When I was younger, I did share snippets of my life on the internet, in novel ways like MySpace questionnaires, but never to this extent. I love it – the internet was made for sharing.

I use my blog to write

Most importantly and most obviously, my blog gives me somewhere to write. For as long as I can remember, I’ve loved writing. As a kid, I wrote stories about growing old with my childhood crushes. In school, I wrote about war and mental health and, even now, when I next find the time I already know where my writing is going to take me (but shh, it’s too early to talk about it).

Writing calms me down, makes me smile, keeps my fingers busy and it can still produce something special at the end of it!

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What’s your favourite thing about blogging?

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You can read my previous post here.

-Morgan