13 Jul 2016

Overdue...1 second of every day of 2015

For 2015 I filmed one second of every day and cut it together into a film for you all to see :)
I got the idea from my best friend who did it for 2014. I feature a lot in her one ♡
I think I will do this again when I turn 25 and document my 25th year. However it is quite a chore to remember to do it every day but its nice to have a year long project to work on. After I had finished I found it really weird not documenting something every day so think it wouldn't be too hard to pick up the habit.

Anyway here it is:

Video a Day 2015 from Sarah O'Brien on Vimeo.

Also a blog post I forgot to post! But thought I would include here as it is reflected in the video.

Bit late in my '2015 was such a great year' post but I'm late to everything, deal with it.

I managed to stick to most of my list of 2015 new year's resolutions/aims. Let's go through the ones I managed.

Do not lose your self respect. You've learnt to listen to it, keep it apart of you
Yep did this :) Can't really go into depth or give examples but promise you I did. 

Take risks. You're doing quite well at this so far, so keep it up!
Did this a little. Nothing major like bungee jump but got out of my comfort zone a few times.

Drink more. Better things seem to happen when alcohol is involved. 
Definitely drank more! My tolerance did increase for a while too and definitely had some good nights out with friends but I'm still not that much of a drinker. Do enjoy the occasional one though ;)

Edit for fun. You wanted this to be your job, don't lose your passion for it.
I did edit for fun in my one second a day video of the year. Check it out.

Keep blogging, you like to ramble and writing has proven to help you get through things, even if everything isn't published.
Failed at this though finally trying again in month 7 of 2016 but hey ho.

Pretend to be a grown up. I'm sure you'll actually start to feel like one if you pretend for long enough.
Did not pretend. Don't feel like I'll ever be a grown up, who feels like a grown up?

Learn/Practise French. You like it and it comes in handy. 
Still no French, the words are there but no conversational skills.

Play music again. You learnt 'A Thousand Miles' in a few weeks. Imagine where you would be after a year.
I did 3 months of singing lessons so I think this counts. I also learnt 'Landslide' by Fleetwood Mac on guitar and played this for my solo.

Don't let anyone hold you back. This is finally the time for you to be you.
Yep I did this, I was very selfish last year, in a good way. Did things I wanted to do such as singing lessons and playing sport.

Go to three countries. You only made it to two last year.
I did go to three countries! Germany, Italy and the USA :)

Take more pictures. It's nice to have photographic evidence of your life.
I took loads of pictures last year. Lots of photographic evidence of 2015, its clogging up my computer.

Document everything. Keep up with the scrap book. 
I have kept things for the scrapbook, I just haven't stuck them in yet. Thinking I need a new one.

Keep running. You'll feel really guilty if you give up the fitness you've worked so hard for.
I kept running all the way through 2015. I did two 10km runs last year and ran recreationally through every season. However I have been more slack in 2016 but not stopped completely.

Bake more. Doesn't matter if the clearing up takes forever.
I made some terrible cupcakes and some really good flapjacks but did not bake enough as I would have liked. However so far in 2016 I have baked quite a bit. They say the way to a man's heart is through his stomach so made a few banana loafs and biscuits for my boyfriend :)

Go out in London more. It's got so much to offer.
I did go out in London more but less tourist things and more drinking things. I know Shoreditch quite well now.

Drive and explore England. You've got the confidence and experience now to drive further. 
Did not drive around enough. Wanted to do more of this in 2016 but still haven't yet. I will be working on that.

Sort out your room. Remember you're trying to a grown up now. 
Room is still a tip :) Some things will never change.

11 Jul 2016

Color runner

I'm still running! I did my first color run last year in Brighton and recently took part again in London. I have not been running as solidly this year but have been running on and off enough to take part in another 5k.

This time I took on the challenge with my previous color running partner Skye, her friend Tom and my boyfriend Jamie.

This time I managed to cover myself in a lot more colour than before so I was very happy about that.

I really enjoyed the run but it was so busy and it bottlenecked at the last kilometre so we didn't get to finish it properly. I preferred the Brighton one last year as you had a nice running route along the sea front and it wasn't so overcrowded! If I run in colour again it will be in Brighton but I still had fun!

See the highlights:


Gig trend

As mentioned in my previous post below, I am attending at least one gig per calendar month of 2016. We are over halfway through 2016 where has that time gone and over halfway through my gigs for the year!

I'm going to update you on the gigs I've been to so far:


Panic! at the Disco


Good Charlotte & All Time Low (pictured)

The Used


Simple Plan


Broken Hands


Funeral For a Friend x2

(Hours gig/best FFAF gig ever/best gig I've ever been to)

Casually Dressed and Deep in Conversation gig / FFAF last ever gig

Slam Dunk Festival - Yellowcard, Mallory Knox, Zebrahead, New Found Glory (pictured), Four Year Strong, Panic! at the Disco


The Offspring


Kyary Pamyu Pamyu

I've still got lots more to come including three for August, one for October lined up so far and two in November including one in Amsterdam! I thought I'd also cross 'gig in another country' off the list.

Only ones left to book are September and December. September is my birthday month so hoping for a really good gig then though to be honest won't be disappointed if I don't find an amazing one as I've already had some pretty amazing gigs including Funeral For A Friend and have some good ones coming up like Bastille and The Cure.

I also want to use this challenge as an opportunity to see other types of music live and not the usual bands or music genres I go for. For instance Broken Hands was a totally new band to me and Kyary Pamyu Pamyu is JPop something I wouldn't usually listen to.

There is lots more to come with my live music and gig experiences this year and really looking forward to them all and documenting them all to look back on. 

5 Apr 2016

New Year's Resolutions

I always start my blog posts these days by saying 'Hello blog!', 'it's been so long..' etc etc. It has, we all know. This time however I'm not going to mention my lack of blogging or apologise for my absence as no one really cares so I'm just going to launch straight in!

It's a new year! Hello 2016. Although we are now 4 months in to the new year and also 4 months into my new job! But that's another story.

I'm blogging to you from my swanky new macbook pro. I'm hoping this makes me sit down and write more as it's much more portable. Writing on my blog involved having to go and sit in the study on my big iMac but now I can write when the mood takes me, like now as I'm currently writing in bed.

It seems a bit late to call this post New Year's Resolutions I hear you say! But in fact I'm giving you an update on mine.

I had a lot of new year's resolutions/life goals last year and I think they all worked out pretty well for me. I managed to take more pictures and completed my 1 second a day video of 2015. I also managed to keep up my more personal goals like realising how awesome I am etc etc.

This year I feel like my life is more on track and there's less to sort out...I think. Not entirely there yet. So this year's aim is a bit more aesthetic. It just so happens that for the first few months this year I am going to at least one gig per month. So I would like to keep up that trend!

So far I have seen:

January - Panic at the Disco!
February - Good Charlotte, All Time Low & The Used
March - Simple Plan

Coming up
April -
May - Funeral For A Friend & Slam Dunk Festival (loads of bands)
June - Offspring

As you can see April is looking very bare. Funeral for a Friend were playing in April but rescheduled their gigs for May!! Now I need a gig for April. Can anyone help me out and give me suggestions for an April gig/concert even tribute band in a pub at this rate!

I think not having a gig lined up for this month may force me to go out of my comfort zone and see an artist I wouldn't really choose to see, setting me up for a new experience.

I remember when I was either 14 or 15 I had the New Year's Resolution to go to more gigs and it was very successful so as a semi adult with more disposable income this should be a lot easier, no excuses really.

So here's to a year with more gigs!

8 Nov 2015

Hello Blogosphere

It's been so long I don't really know where to begin! I vowed to blog more this year but it hasn't happened and I do apologise. However I have been working on a project that I will share with you in the new year. One of my new years resolutions was to record 1 second of every day as a video and put it all together at the end of the year. I've been editing throughout the year and there's less than two months to go until it's all finished! Where does the time go?!

When I upload that in early 2016 you'll finally see what I've been up to in 2015. I've felt a bit more like a grown up this year. Not that I've really been doing grown up things but I feel less like a teenager and more like someone who is pretending to be an adult. I've realised that's what being an adult is like, we're all just pretending and hoping that it comes across correctly.

A part of being an adult is drinking wine! Which I certainly learned to do in Italy. As previously mentioned I spent my 24th birthday in sunny Milan with my two best friends. It was one of the best birthday's I've ever had. It was quite weird as it was my first birthday without my parents. It probably won't be the last but I did miss them and do like to spend my birthday with them. You realise as you get older I think, how important your parents are and I'm lucky and very happy that I'm so close with them. Being an only child I guess my parents take on a larger role to 'fill the void' of no siblings. I don't feel any void to be honest so I guess they did a good job. We're really close and that's not a bad thing which I would of thought when I was younger as it's 'uncool'. Unfortunately our family went through a bereavement recently and it puts everything into perspective. Life can change in an instant. You can literally be living your normal life and suddenly it turns on its head and it's not the same anymore and never will be. With that in mind it changes how you look at things. You really need to make the most of every single day and every single person you love and care about. Don't waste a second while you're here.

Sorry for going a bit deep there. It's 1am and I'm just checking in and writing what comes to mind. I will have something significant to post next time.

Happy blogging.

24 Aug 2015

Here's to 23

I think throughout life there are certain periods you will remember more clearly and enjoy more. It sounds dismal to say that we coast through life but life can’t be exciting all the time can it? My year of being 23 has been life changing and memorable the entire time. As I approach 24 I would like to give thanks to my year of being 23. Here’s to 23 and what happened:

• I had my heart broken – this taught me so much! I can’t tell you how good it is to get your heartbroken. You feel like a fool, your pride is wounded and it hurts like fucking hell. All this I suffered (the pain I cannot describe & I felt like an absolute mug) however it was also like waking up from a dream. I was able to put everything into perspective, not continue to look at things through rose tinted glasses and become myself again. Cliché that you lose yourself in a relationship and I really hate that I did. But now I’m back! I couldn’t have gotten through it without the help of my friends and one particular friend who literally picked me up and put me back together and made me remember who I am.

I think this has a lot to do with why 23 was such a good year for me. This happened shortly after my birthday and the future that I thought I had changed instantly. I probably would have continued on my mediocre path, trying to please other people instead of myself. I remember last summer thinking ‘Do I want this to be my life? ...Really?’ but I just continued to carry on, as we do when we coast. It also changed my personality. I’m more selfish now but in the good way I think…I hope. I know what I want, what I like and what I deserve and I apply that to everything; men, friends, activities. I have done so much this year for me, not for anyone else.

•Friends – I’ve gained more friends this year and kept it touch better with the ones I already had. I feel like I’m a part of a solid girl group of friends now. Apart from just having a whatsapp group where we ramble on all day about rubbish I feel like we support each other properly through the bad times too. I’ve also formed stronger bonds with friends at work too and now we socialise outside of work as well as have a whatsapp group.

• I've taken part in two 10k runs – I have got the running bug! I love it, I’m not the best at it but I really enjoy that runners high and will carry on running.

• I've played sports- I played a lot of sports at school and always wanted to get back into them and now I have. This past year I’ve played badminton, netball and handball. I’ve either done this by myself or gone along with friends, both ways I really enjoy playing.

• I’ve taken up singing lessons - Every Wednesday since May I’ve gone along to group singing lessons by City Academy. It’s a great activity to break up the week, meet new people and just enjoy something for yourself. I love music and I like to sing (when no one can hear me). I’ve really enjoyed my singing lessons, my confidence has improved and so has my voice. I’m finishing my lessons by the end of August. I may carry them on later or join a choir, I haven’t decided yet.

• I've sang at Rockaoke- as a result of my singing lessons. I had no stage fright for the first time in forever and had so much fun rocking out on stage covering a Foo Fighters song. Now making it a regular thing!

• Dates- I’ve been on a few dates. None that are really good enough to progress to the second or third date but I’m learning about single life and the dating game. 

• I've done more exploring- Whether it be in London or little road trips or just a walk around the local forest. I’m appreciating nature a lot more and love going for a country walk, or a long drive to explore somewhere outside of London. And exploring London, finding little quirky things to do or behaving like a tourist. 

• I got a job! - A real life grown up job in an office! No more dealing with the general public in the library. I’m on the career path starting of as a Marketing Assistant.

So that's 23 in a nutshell! Don't forget all the other times like seeing Arsenal win the FA Cup at Wembley! Holidays, gigs, dancing, partying and just having fun with friends!

I've had such a good year and can't wait to see what 24 will bring. I'm kicking it off in style in Milan for my birthday with my two best friends! Is there anything better? 

31 Jul 2015

Ready, set...Run!

A year ago I started running outdoors. I signed up for my first timed, competitive run. I use the term competitive loosely as it was ‘race for life’. Charity runs aren’t really competitive but that’s the best analogy I can think of.

I used to run on treadmills. It took time to build up my stamina from scratch but over time I got much betterI’d find a spot on the wall and focus on that and try not to look at the time on the screen. After a while that became unavoidable so I would then place my towel over the screen. Eventually running on a treadmill became really boring. At university began to run outside. I didn’t know a lot of people there and I lived right next to a field. I was able to run along the grassland hills and enjoy the countryside and only ever encountered dog walkers. When I moved back home I stopped running. Why would I want to run in my small, crappy London suburban town? Nobody runs around here, I’m not skinny, people would stare at me?

Work wanted a team to take part in ‘Race for Life’ so I signed up. I hadn’t run for a while so I thought it would be a good way to get fit. I only ran outdoors a few times leading up to the race and didn’t train enough. I completed the run, on the most humid day of the year with bouts of walking, in around 42 minutes, which is quite slow. However I was proud of my achievement and vowed to carry on. The run spurred on a new exercise craze for me. I was now going to be a ‘runner’.

A year later I have completed to two 10k runs, one of which was this month. It was almost a year to the day that I had half ran/walked the 5k. This time I completed my 10k at a steady pace without stopping, measured through my beloved ‘mapmyrun’ app. I am very proud of that as it was a hot day, I was very dehydrated and the course was hillier than expected. It was slower than I would have liked but as I say I kept a steady pace throughout and finished in 1 hour and 19 minutes. I’m now looking for a run in the autumn to beat that time.

I never thought I’d be a ‘runner’ but I really enjoy it. Even if most of the time I’m running around my shabby suburban town, my local park or a route with more of a view such as the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park that I took part in recently. 

Being a ‘runner’ is a type of community. You meet other runners of different abilities and specialities and you can talk all day about pace, distance, and the latest gadget/app, how your training is going. It’s actually endless and also annoys everyone around you. There are communities online with forums, training tips, dietary tips, again endless.

What I love most though is that everyone can run! The insecurity I had about running outdoors went away after a few runs when I realised I really didn’t care. So what if I look stupid? I’m only seen for a few fleeting seconds by others. In the winter I wear layers and bright fluorescents in the summer I wear whatever will keep me cool, including vests, deal with it. Every shape and size can run and when I talk to runners they’re not surprised that I run. It’s the unfit people I surprise, as I probably put them to shame. I’ve been the same size running throughout, far far far from skinny. I’ve put my chunky legs to good use and honed their power on the roads. This is also evident in charity runs. On Sunday it was a sea of people of different ages, shapes, sizes, abilities, you name it, there was just about everybody taking part. 

So training continues for the next run!

22 Feb 2015

I Can Go The Distance

I've stayed true to a few of my new years resolutions. I've kept running and two weeks ago I took part in my first 10km run! I kept up with my training plan and two weeks before the race came down with every virus available so I had to put off training till I was better! I did manage to go for a run 4 days before race day. I only managed to do 5km but it was a good 5km in which I ran a good time, didn't stop at all and felt comfortable, so I was fairly happy and confident going into the race.

Race day was a very early start on a Sunday morning! My friend and I were doing it together and had to travel to Greenwich Park. We'd heard that the course could be hilly but weren't really sure what to expect and we hadn't trained on a hilly terrain. Boy, was that a mistake! On our journey to the park we had to go up alongside the park to the entrance and by up I mean UP! The hill was extremely steep. We wondered what we had let ourselves in for.

As it turned out, we had let ourselves in for a really tough run, for hardcore serious runners. It started well, I was all excited and pumped up and ran my fastest kilometre ever. Then the divide was noticeable. As us Tortoises approached the 2.5km mark, the Hares were passing us nearly finishing their first 5km lap!

I enjoyed my first 5km lap though. There were people around me and I felt a part of something. It was very tricky though, the hills were killer but I was determined not to stop. Even on the really big hill at the end of the lap, I took it slow and managed to run the whole way. I was also taking pictures of the nice scenery (taking more pictures as part of my new years resolutions)

Second lap was a different story. All the runners at my pace finished at 5km and I carried on around the course solo. I have to say the second lap was very disheartening, especially seeing as I fell over.

I had to ruin the experience didn't I? I thought I would try and make up some time going down the hill a little faster, something which I knew better than to do the first time around but I am too proud and didn't want to finish last. So I went a little faster and tripped over my own feet, on gravel.

I dramatically clambered to the ground hoping that no one saw. After realising that I was on the floor and feeling soar I looked up and around me and a runner (not a part of the race but on his normal Sunday morning run) stopped to help me up. I was actually really grateful for this but he was really good looking and that just made me even more embarrassed. He was so friendly though and asked if I was ok which I said I was. He then said "Are you in that race over there?" (after seeing the massive number printed on my front) "You've come a long way" or words to that affect which just set me off. My eyes started to fill up and I said "yep" tried to style it out and start jogging again. He didn't know what to do, he started running backwards bless him and said "maybe best to sit down for a while." I bit my lip, nodded and gestured for him to carry on, which thank God he did.

I tried to run and nearly tripped over again! This got me and the tears came, I felt like a failure, everything hurt and I was completely on my own. It was at this point that I noticed that I had scraped my hand open and there was a lot of blood. This was sort of my turning point. I had to continue on until I finished the race until it got seen to and if I ran I'd get there faster. All those runs in the dark after work in the cold were for this moment so I had to finish, it didn't matter how I did it. So I carried on. I did walk on occasion for around 30 seconds but I was mainly jogging. Except the last kilometre. I'd given up, everyone who had finished the race had walked past me at this point smiling with their medals, my hand hurt, my feet hurt. So I walked the horrific hill then stupidly decided to sprint the last 100 meters, especially when I saw the clock. I finished the race feeling sick and relieved that I had done it.

My hand was seen to and I waited at the finish line for my friend to cross the line. We then confirmed to each other that it was a horrible experience but at least it was all over now and we had done it.

I thought it would put me off running but after a few days I was thinking about booking another 10km run for the summer, on a flat course! I'm looking at a few so I'm sure by Spring I will have one or two runs booked. I'm making sure they're fun runs though, can't deal with them serious runners again, I just want to have fun and enjoy it! I can only go up from here.

I got a giant cookie and cool medal out of it though. I will start a collection. Of medals.