As it happens I have had a fantastic birthday and I feel blessed to have such great friends and family around me as they play a massive part in my happiness. Following on from that and reading Sarah's post on her five things that make her happy, I thought I'd put together a similar post. My nanna was such a positive person and influence in my life - she saw the best in everything and was grateful of every little thing in life. So in memory of her positivity and the fact that I'm another year older (but not necessarily wiser) here are 23 things that make me happy. I'm not going to tell you how old I am, but if you read between the (very obvious) lines, you'll be able to figure it out.
They know me better than anyone and whilst it isn't always a bed of roses, I don't know what I'd do without them and our wicked sense of humour.
2. My Friends
Whilst I'm quite content with my own company - my mum always says that when I started primary school that I didn't see the point, and would quite happily sit in a corner by myself just doodling, I love being around my friends equally. Whether it's banter, hour long conversations, countless nights out, birthdays, new years, weddings, holidays and every other event we've shared, I wouldn't change them for the world - they give me the confidence I have today.
I'd never want to live in a world without music. Take my iPod away and I'm lost. My taste in music is crazy but I love it - I've still got songs from 10 years ago on it and a lot of them make me cringe now but it reflects each time in my life and I wouldn't change that.
4. Taking Too Many Photographs
When I was younger I used to take photographs of every event and whilst I don't think photographs should dominate every place you go as ultimately you should spend more time living than taking photos of you living, I don't think you can ever have too many photos. Photos are memories and even if and when people leave your life, you still have those to look back on and smile at.
Most people I know hate the stuff, but I can drink this till the cows come home, and is the one thing I'm guaranteed to bring back from a holiday.
6. Dancing (The Real Kind)
This is a funny one as I don't like making a fool of myself but I love to dance - but the both go hand in hand. I also love the proper dancing that people only tend to reserve for weddings - it beats the side step anytime.
7. People Remembering The Little Details About You
I had a friend when I was younger who would remember exactly how strong I liked my ribena. Although this sounds ridiculous, it made me smile that he'd picked that up and remembered it.
8. Scaring Myself
They say you're meant to scare yourself everyday - and I sort of agree as it makes you feel alive. I'm not talking anything stupid here but going on a rollercoaster, watching a horror film in the dark by myself and most recently doing the tarzan swing at Go Ape - they all push myself emotionally. Climbing the Sydney Harbour bridge took me to the edge, putting my trust in safety devices whilst climbing over rush hour traffic but the view at the top made it worth every second thought.
Or any board game in general. Anyone who's played Articulate knows how competitive this game is - even worse if my sister is involved.
10. Steak or Chicken, Bacon and Stilton
Anywhere that has either of these two meals makes me happy. The second one came from a place I used to work which sadly is now shut, but the food memories live on - so much so that this is one of my favourite meals and would definitely make it onto my 'what would be my last meal' list - good work Lex.
Quotes are like marmite - you either love them or you hate them. I love them - my colleague Lauren hates them. I always have a Pinterest board for them and my desk at work has one framed. Any sort of positive words or encouragement spurs me on and can help turn a not so great day around.
12. Coding Something That Actually Works
I'm no pro at coding but have taught myself what I know over the past seven years and just like anything in life - it's so rewarding after hours of trial and error that it actually equates to something.
13. Video Editing
I don't do as much of it anymore but finishing a video edit after an all nighter - worth it everytime. But boy do I regret my Youtube channel name - why, oh why.
Design is always something I've liked. I used to make graphics for free (back when glitter names were a thing) and now with my blog I like to have as much creative input as possible. Just don't give me anything written in comic sans.
This one is quite an obvious one considering I run a fashion blog and work in fashion. Although it's materialistic, if you feel good wearing something or a piece of clothing reminds you of a happy event, then why not. I particularly love the 60s - shift dresses, monochromes and bouffants - it's me all over. And the 90s - although there's only so many more years I can get away with wearing crop tops.
16. Family Guy
I don't think this one needs much explaining. Peter Griffin is just a legend, and anywhere showing FG makes me happy.
17. The Sun
No not the paper, the actual sun, which admittedly living in England we don't see much of it. It's so sacred that any sign of it and I'm outside. It just makes everything better and everyone happier - except for my friend David who isn't a fan of summer.
My Australian cousin says "I don't just like broccoli, I love broccoli. For me, my equivalent is sleeping. Whilst I don't like wasting a day by lying in for too long, I love my sleep - which is ironic as I never get enough of it. Growing up, on Christmas morning my older sister would come bouncing in, yelling at me to get up to come and open presents. I love presents but I'd always choose sleep - which proves how much I love it.
19. Penny Fall Machines
Quite a random one but this is based purely on my childhood. We used to have a British seaside holiday every year and this was part of it. Getting given two whole pounds to waste on a machine where the end game was a plastic keyring just seemed like the dream. I like to think I've perfected my technique over the years and I can't go to the seaside and not go on one.
Aside from modern rom coms, I will pretty much watch anything. Stay clear of Cabin in the woods (how that ever got to the silver screen I don't know). Two of my all time favourite films are ones my mum introduced to me - Pretty Woman and Dirty Dancing. Patrick Swayze was a babe and I could quote Pretty Woman all day - and let's face it, both have wicked sound tracks. I can't think of many romantic films made these days that matches either of those two.
21. My Piano
Aside from having a garden, giving up my piano is another thing that I would miss if I moved into the city. Whilst I don't have lessons anymore, I still play and love being able to crack a song - am yet to conquer one of the ultimate songs - Vanessa Carlton's 'A Thousand Miles' but hopefully by the time another 365 days have passed I will have done.
22. Red Lipstick
I don't even recall when the red lipstick wearing started but it's something that makes me feel like 'me' so it felt right to put it in this list. Make-up in general does make me happy - as although I'll take any opportunity to not wear it - it gives me confidence and protects the general public from my dark circles.
This one had to be on this list considering I've spent the last hour writing this. I was that annoying kid in class that loved getting assigned essays and I'd be that person raising their hand in exams wanting extra paper.