2k16 flashback

My life, Photography, Travel

img_0017img_0034img_0033img_0079img_0018img_0102img_0080img_0104img_0093img_0111img_0095img_0129img_0181img_0131img_0195img_0139img_0212img_0233img_0238img_0140img_0254img_0264img_0268img_0270img_0283img_0288img_0354img_0352img_0361img_0386img_0404img_0382Version 2img_0416img_0494img_0504img_0511img_0768img_0796img_0802img_0788img_0547img_0526img_0907img_0911img_0909img_0929img_0855img_0926img_0930img_0932img_0958img_1006img_1007img_1035img_1052img_1101img_1209img_1212img_1236img_1257img_1258img_1262img_1293img_1301img_1330img_1334img_1341img_1335img_1337img_1360img_1361img_1463img_1467img_1396img_1505img_1517img_1448img_1493img_1413img_1454img_1508img_1509img_1536img_1538img_1568img_1588img_1584Tum tum tum, the end of 2k16 is approaching and while most people probably can’t wait for the new year to start so they can become their better selves and ‘stick’ to their new years resolutions, I’d like to take the time to look back. Why? Because although I wouldn’t say this was one of my most successful or joyful years in life, I can’t deny that there’s been many new adventures I’ve conquered (or at least tried to). I’ve met many new people, moved to a different city, started living on my own, started studying at university,  came across a couple rough patches, but sort of managed to survive all of them with some help, mostly love, from my save haven, my family and friends of course.

1. What did you learn about yourself from this past year?
The importance of taking some me-time. Not watching a dozen films on Netflix a day kind of me time, but knowing when your body needs to rest or when you e.g. have to go to the gym to empty your mind. 

2. Which relationship(s) meant the most to you this past year and why?
Definitely the relationships with my family. My dad because he doesn’t get mad when I get frustrated over ECG’s or traffic and calms me down whenever I think I’ve got some strange illness I recently learned about; my mom because she reminds me to rethink my strategy on how to tell someone about my disagreement and for giving me a weekly cheese supply; my sisters for cheering me up when I’m sad and facetiming me whenever I’m home alone so I don’t get scared or feel lonely; my grandma for always worrying about my well-being when it comes to pretty much everything in life. 

3. What was one of the biggest challenges you faced this past year and how did you handle it?
Coping with my grandmother’s illness, because there didn’t seem anything I could do for her. I now call her more frequently, to remind her that she’s on my mind even though I’m not home. 

4. What was one of your proudest moments from this past year and why?
When I got into Erasmus University to study medicine. It’s been my dream ever since I can remember and although I didn’t succeed in applying last year, I finally managed to.

5. What was one of the most meaningful compliments you received this past year? Why was it so meaningful to you?
That I’ve become a more open person towards strangers and am not afraid to stick up for myself. All my life I’ve been told that I was too shy and humble. In my opinion I just didn’t want to make a fuss over small things, but I’m glad people don’t think of me like that anymore. 

6. What did you do for fun this past year? What was one of your favorite memories?
Travel a lot and damn I feel the wanderlust inside me screaming for more. Hmm.. I’d say the trip to Santorini with my sissies is one I’ll never forget. I couldn’t be a prouder sister than I am now. Also, they’re hilarious. (photos shown above were taken during our travel).

7. If you could change one thing from this past year, what would you change and why?
I don’t think I’d want to change anything and the reason why is because everything that has happened has made me the person I am here and now. Although I’ve definitely made mistakes or done some less thought-through actions, I’ve learnt from them and I think I’d have done the same sooner or later anyway. At the time I thought they were the right thing to do or because I simply didn’t know any better.

8. What was the most meaningful thing someone did for you this past year? What was the most meaningful thing you did for someone else?
I’m not the kind of person that lets her friends or family do big things for herself. It’s because whenever something like that happens, I feel like I owe them. However, I can be super thankful for the smallest actions, such as when my roommate makes soup for me whenever I’m ill or when someone sends me a good luck test just before my exams start. Also, big shout out to my neighbours for taking care of me whenever I’m equal to a six-year-old (unfortunately, I happen to be like this more than average for a 20-year-old, if there’s even such a thing).

9. If you were to brag about one of your accomplishments from this past year, which one would it be and why?
I can deadlift up to 70 KG! Weehoo #newpr Really hope to work towards this soon again. 

10. Given all your experiences, insights, and lessons learned from last year, what’s the best advice you could give yourself for next year?
Don’t get caught up into the fast life. Take the time to realise what’s going on this week and what’s happened in the past week. Enjoy life

Thank you to all the new and old friends who’ve been with me this year, I have no idea where I would’ve been without you. I’m really happy where I’m at now and I hope so are y’all too. I’ll see you next year again my loves xo’

New year, new happenings… (Part 1)

Travel

IMG_0609IMG_0566IMG_0582IMG_0587IMG_0618IMG_0652IMG_0768IMG_0774IMG_0856IMG_0817IMG_0877IMG_0875IMG_0829IMG_0914IMG_0915“So, what exactly has happened since Christmas? How did you celebrate New Year? What did you do ever since?”

Well, that’s what I’m about to tell you. However, I’ve decided to split it up in different chapters to ease the reading. Nice of me, isn’t it?

New Year is a really big thing in Australia. It is prohibited in Sydney to ignite your own fireworks. So in return, the government sets up two firework shows – one at 9pm and one at midnight – for the people to watch. The highlight of the second show is, obviously, the Sydney Harbour Bridge. The days before New Year, we spent hours online looking for the best spot to watch the fireworks from. Mrs Macquarie’s Chair was one of the results that kept getting mentioned on different website as the best place to be at around midnight. The question we then faced was: how long in advance do we have to be there to get a proper spot? Would 3 hours be enough or maybe 5? Some websites claimed that people would get there 12 hours in advance already. Shocked by this statement we decided to dedicate our whole day to the firework show by starting a picnic around 10am and amuse ourselves with a colouring book, music and some games on our phones. We prepared sandwiches in the early mornings, made sure we had some smaller snacks and, most importantly, water with us. Little that we know that by the time we arrived at the entrance of the botanic gardens, there was a huge queue already. By huge I mean hundreds, maybe a thousand of people already. We waited for approximately 4 hours in the almost unbearable sun until we were finally able to enter. Once we’d arrived, we found ourselves about 2 square metre to fit on with our backpacks and food. I can definitely say that it was not comfortable but once the fireworks started, I was relieved that all of it was so worth it. We could see the bridge almost clearly and we were surrounded by fireworks everywhere.

The next day our host invited us to join him to the horse races in Sydney, since one of his own horses was racing that day. These races are very popular in Australia, since many people bet on them. I can honestly say that I’ve never experienced such an awesome event. All men wear suits, while the women show off their best dresses including heels and hats with feathers on them. Even children wear their best outfits. Our hosts horse – the one we bet our money on – ended third, resulting in us winning a couple more dollars than our stake.

The next couple of days we spent visiting the Chinese garden of friendship, going to a cricket game – unfortunately, most of it got cancelled due to bad weather -, seeing the legends play at a soccer game, visiting the ‘old’ part of Sydney, doing the Bondi to Coogee walk and actually finished it this time, baking, reading, drawing and chilling in a bubblebath.

The 8th of January was the day we had to leave this wonderful country to start a new adventure: New Zealand. Which brings us to my next chapter…
p.s. to those who wondered what part of Australia we visited:

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