Sunday, 25 September 2011

Makeover shoot and Mastermind

The list is still pottering along slowly but surely...
Latest achievements have been taking part in a Makeover Shoot and for myself, being in the audience of Mastermind!

First of all, I was lucky enough to be invited to be in the audience of Mastermind by my friend Gemma (unfortunately there was only one spare ticket so Jemima couldn't do this one with me). The day was really interesting, seeing exactly what happens behind the scenes that you obviously don't see on TV, and to keep the audience entertained during the long breaks where the crew would have to reset we had a comedian! It was a fun experience that I'd love to try again sometime, though this time with Jemima so she can tick it off her list too!

So, the makeover shoot. Well, Jemima bought this experience with New-ID studios for my birthday back in February, but we've not had a chance til lately to make the most of it! We were both very excited to go along and get pampered for the day, and have a team of lovely ladies make us up into beauties.

The day started off with a nice glass of complimentary Buck's Fizz (which made us feel exceptionally classy) whilst I kept Jemima company as she had her hot pink hair re-dyed to a slightly less intense red/pink. Then we both had our hair cut, although I had to make up a story about how a "trainee at Supercuts had ruined my hair" because I was too ashamed to admit that I had attempted to cut it myself.

With both of us looking better already after having our hair tidied up professionally, we were then moved on to the make-up chair, but not before another cheeky Buck's Fizz was handed to us. I was slightly worried after previous 'make-up artist' exploits that the lady would cake me in make-up and leave me bearing an uncanny resemblance to those girls you see on "Snog, Marry, Avoid", but the experience was wonderful. Of course, they have to put a little more make-up on than you may be used to because of the impending photoshoot and the lights they use, but I came away from the chair feeling prettier and sexier than I had done in ages.

After waiting around for a little while we were both called in for our photoshoot. A series of pictures in a range of our 3 outfits, mostly with the photographer telling us how to pose but we were able to contribute our own ideas, so I managed to get a few publicity shots with my clarinet. Also, my favourite picture that was taken was when we both randomly grabbed some teddy bears which were lying in a 'prop box' in the corner and ran into the shot giggling manically. The photographer loved it and eagerly snapped us acting like crazy kids.

Unfortunately, the pictures are very expensive (although we got a very good deal). Thankfully we can pay monthly so we can actually afford them! And believe me, for the self-esteem boost alone, they are well worth the money.

Tuesday, 12 July 2011

I never want to see chocolate cake AGAIN.

So it's been a while since I last updated, since my laptop is pretty much on its last legs and keeps dying pretty much every time I try to update. But anyway.

We've managed to blitz a fair few things off our list in the last month, one of the biggest and most difficult being the famous Slattery Chocolate Challenge. This challenge is NOT for the faint hearted, consisting of not only a MAHEUSIVE slice of rich chocolate fudge cake (with 4 layers cemented together with extra thick fudge icing!), 2 large chocolate cups (as in, cups made from pure chocolate) filled with chocolate ice cream and whipped cream, and 2 small chocolate cups filled with liquid milk and white chocolate. AND 3 chocolate discs and a large hot chocolate. Sound easy? Think again!

3 of us went to attempt this challenge, but only I managed to succeed (after about 2 hours when all the ice cream had melted and my brain had gone fuzzy from the sugar overload). Safe to say, I will never be able to look at chocolate cake in the same way again.

The other big list achievement was going to Whit Friday for the first time as spectators! Having heard the college brass players go on about it for so many years, I've really wanted to go for ages! So it was really exciting to be involved watching the wonderful Middleton band. We sang "It's a long way to Tipperary" loudly and proudly, and happily munched away on chips and gravy as the band competed throughout Tameside. And as is customary on any occasion involving brass bands, of course lots of pints were consumed. It was a long but fun day, and Middleton even managed to win a couple of prizes (clearly down to our amazing singing!) so a great day was had all round.

In other news, we completed our dream diaries, (Jemima had a running theme of transport, I had one of dogs). Also, we bought a steak and cheese subway for a very grateful tramp who we found after half an hour of walking around town...just off of Piccadilly Gardens. When I can get my laptop sorted, I'll post the video we made of this charitable act. We've also attempted to start work on my mess of a back garden, but thats most definitely a work in progress, there's still a lot to do! We did make some very tasty tasty home-made lemonade to help us along in the heat though. And we're going to give blood next week, eek!

Thursday, 9 June 2011

Rain, rain, go away.

The weather is practically SCHIZOPHRENIC at the moment, and it's driving me up the wall! It's supposed to be Summer, but we've had hail, thunderstorms, heavy rain, cloud, blustery winds and the occasional 10 minute sunny spell before the whole cycle starts again. I wish it would make up its mind. Actually, no, I wish I could control it so we could actually have some sunny, summery weather for once in June. 

Not only is it depressing, it's also stopping us from completing items on our list! So time has to be devoted to the more rainy-day challenges. Dream diaries are going well, it's really funny to read back the entries now we're a week in, I really don't remember half the dreams now! And we've bought our canvases from The Works so Jemima and I can get started on painting pictures for each other, very exciting! Also been filling up my terramundi with any £1 coins I can lay my hands on, so by Christmas I should (in theory) be filthy rich.
And hopefully at least if the blustery weather keeps up, we might be able to fly a homemade kite. So it's not all bad.

In terms of my own list, well, it's going slowly. I've watched another new film: Teeth. Incredibly disturbing, and not one I'd recommend for the faint hearted / those with any cinematic taste whatsoever. For those that haven't heard of it, the film is based on the idea of "Vagina Dentata", i.e. A woman with teeth inside her vagina, which jump to her defence when "necessary"... Let's just say it contains graphic scenes.

Oh, I've uploaded a copy of mine and Jemima's list too, so both lists are up here now. Lots to do, time is ticking!

Wednesday, 1 June 2011

The start of our adventures!

Tonight marks the start of mine and Jemima's list of things to do. We celebrated with champagne and cheesecake!

We have already crossed off one of our "foods/drinks we've never tried" with our CHAMPAGNE BREAKFAST (yes, that's right). Tonight we're going to start our dream diaries for a month, and we've also started putting together our time capsule to be opened in 2020, first things first writing letters to each other for when we're both 30. What a terrifying thought - we might each be married with kids with a mortgage by then...

Right now, I couldn't be enjoying life any more. College is over for the year, I'm spending the evening with one of my closest friends and a bottle of rosé, and can't wait for the rest of our adventures to start :-)

In other news, on my own list...I've watched the Social Network, which was a pretty awesome film it has to be said. For those that haven't seen it, it was all about the creation of facebook, and the legal troubles that Mark Zuckerberg faced as a result. Very intrinsic observations about the American university social life, and how that has now been completely transferred onto the internet. As one character quoted in the film: "We lived on farms, we lived in cities, now we're going to live on the internet!" Pretty thought-provoking.

Thursday, 26 May 2011

Just to make things slightly more fun...(difficult!)

Not content with having my own list of challenges - my friend Jemima and I have come up with our own list of 100 things to do before Christmas! In all fairness, some of the items cross over onto both lists, and it's always good to have someone to do these things with! And with the next 3 months looking pretty empty we're going to need something to fill our time ;-)

Me and Jemima on our last adventure: to London!

The whole list of 100 things can be found here on Jemima's blog.

After rooting through the loft I've found my old video camera...which is broken. Gutted. BUT (student loan student schmoan...) I have invested in a brand NEW one (with Full HD, oh yes) so we can document our adventures together. I'm REALLY looking forward to the last minute (i.e. 2 days beforehand, let's drop everything and go) holiday and the cycling to France! Oh, and the llama trekking and filling a terramundi to spend at Selfridges in the sales - we're going to act snooty and as if we think nothing of spending £150 on a scarf; we're very well to do ladies who do this sort of thing all the time, of course.

News on my own list is fairly slow...although I have just got "The Social Network" from LoveFilm for my list of 50 films to see. I'll update soon.

Friday, 20 May 2011

The unattempted remains impossible.

I'm not a stranger to the world of blogging. For the last year or so I have kept a regular blog about the (non-too interesting, unfortunately) happenings in my own life. However, after recent events I have been made to see that some things are better kept off the internet and vented somewhere more private, like a diary.

Therefore, I thought I'd put this space to better use and start a blog about the list of challenges I've set myself. In theory they are to be completed by my 30th birthday, but obviously being a poor student at the moment (and in a year's time an even poorer music graduate...) that could be a tricky one, but I'll give it a go.

As a music student, it's so difficult to find anything else to fill your time - you're constantly surrounded by music day-to-day as a general rule, whether it's playing it, analysing it, conducting it, writing about it or even actually listening to it. For so many people, music is just a hobby but for me and so many others it is genuinely our entire existence. Don't get me wrong, I can't get enough of music in my life and I wouldn't change what I'm doing for anything. But the constant exposure can get to you sometimes, and occasionally it's nice to have some light relief. However, I realised recently that, actually, I have no other hobbies. I play the clarinet day in and day out, and do virtually nothing else (apart from the necessary, eat, sleep, umm...etc.). I'm actually an incredibly boring person and outside of the 4 walls of music-college will find it so difficult to even just have a normal conversation with a non-musician who's life doesn't actually revolve around music.

Having realised that I really don't want to be such a bore, for my own sake and that of others who have the misfortune to meet me down the pub on a Friday night, I've decided to try and turn my life around and challenge myself to do something different. As the title of this blog suggests, the things you don't at least attempt to do remain impossible to achieve.

Anyway, enough background waffle. Onto the list.

1. Travel to every continent.

2. Write a novel

3. Watch 50 films I've never seen (and should have).

4. Live in London

5. Learn Spanish

6. Learn to run properly, and run a half marathon. Then, if not dead, try for a marathon.

7. Coast to coast road trip across USA. (Pink driving licence required first, obviously)

8. Have sex in an adventurous place, preferably without getting caught

9. Pass my driving test

10. Try 20 foods I've never had before

11. Live alone

12. Go bungee jumping/skydiving/both

13. Visit Austria

14. Spend £500 in one night

15. Pay off my overdraft and stay in the black

16. Volunteer work for at least a year

17. Be on TV (and not just waving shittily in the background of a news item)

18. Eat in a Michelin star restaurant

19. Play in a professional orchestra

20. See England play in the world cup. In any sport, I'm not that fussed really.

21. Throw a dart into a world map, and have a long weekend in the place it lands

22. Read 50 books I've never read

23. Own a car. A nice one.

24. Take my parents out for a meal (not with each other though, that could be a recipe for disaster...)

25. Buy an expensive bottle of champagne and drink it with my closest friends

26. Go back to South Africa to see my grandad again

27. Get a first in my degree

28. Milk a cow

29. Learn how to actually use all the special features on my camera to take amazing pictures

30. Climb Kilimanjaro

I'll use this blog to keep track of the entries that I've achieved, or that I'm attempting. And maybe the ones that I've failed at (I'm hoping to keep those down to a minimum though). I'll try and document things with my camera as well, pictures make everything more interesting!