I wrote this post in a lovely bakeshop in York on the last day of my second year of university. Afterwards, I wandered my city with my camera for a few hours, trying to find the words to express my gratitude and thinking about the beauty of the everyday. The following does neither justice, but I’m pressing publish all the same.

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Well, January was a bit of an odd one, wasn’t it? It’s hard to comprehend how much the world has changed since the beginning of this year, and it feels strange to try and situate my own personal day-to-day experiences within this new political framework. But this year I’ve decided that I want to take some time at the beginning of each new month reflecting on the one previous and setting a focus for the days ahead, so here goes.

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I honestly can’t believe I head back up to York this weekend. Somehow it’s been nearly six weeks since I had any classes, and almost four since I came home, but the time has absolutely flown. I’ve had a really wonderful time back home with my family, friends and G, but I’m also ready to head back into the madness of uni life. Spring term of second year holds all sorts of promises and plans; in fact it’s kind of a big deal. During this term I’ll reach the halfway point of my degree and start planning my final year dissertation. Here’s a rundown of what the next ten weeks hold, and what I hope to achieve over their course.

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Happy New Year! Welcome to 2017 on Lightly We Go. Scrolling through my Bloglovin’ and Twitter feeds I’ve seen quite a few people talking about how something feels particularly good about this year. I’m not sure what it is either, but I’m feeling it too. The start of last year was very difficult for me personally, but as time went on it got better and better and I’m hoping that 2017 will follow in the same trend. But of course that won’t happen just by magic! So I thought it was time to set some goals that I hope to focus on and achieve over the next twelve months.

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I can draw a thick black line down the almost-centre of twenty-sixteen. On one side of the line is a blurred and shadowy smudge of stress and sadness, and on the other a crisp flurry of memories all bright and gleaming like champagne under Christmas lights. I can pinpoint the exact moment everything started to get better. There’s something quite miraculous about the fact that I can look back now and think, that was a great year for me, because the first half was the complete opposite – but in truth it has been a year of transformation and uphill climb towards something which I’ve always hoped for. And now for the very first time, on the last day of this particularly remarkable year which, for better or for worse, most of us will never forget, I feel like the summit might finally be within reach. But that’s all to come, and it starts tomorrow. For now, here’s my illustrated look back on the past twelve months.

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