Life · Summer

Things I’ve learnt in 1 year of blogging

12th June 2016.

The day I first published a post on this blog.

I’ve had many blogs over the years but this one is the first one that’s stuck. I mean, it’s changed so much since I first started but at least I haven’t completely deleted it like all my previous blogs! I’ve lost count of how many blogs I’ve deleted but I think it must be over 10 so this really is a step forward for me!

It started as ‘My Internet Home’ over on Blogger but when I changed to WordPress in November, I changed the name to ‘Life in Kateish’ as I preferred it and I felt it was more memorable.

So technically, the whole blog changed. The name, the host, the design although the blog posts transferred. If you really feel like seeing how / if my blog posts have progressed, my first post is HERE.

Anyway, that means that it’s now been over one year of me blogging consistently. What!!? I never expected to actually stick to it but it looks like I’m here to stay and I’m really enjoying it especially in the last few months. I can’t wait to see what the next 6 months brings.

Today I wanted to share a few things I’ve discovered in my first year of constant (ish) blogging. I know it’s quite a generic post but I’m hoping my points will be a bit more unusual!

There will always people who just get blogging.

It’s certainly the case for me.

I can’t help comparing myself to people who started their blogs at the same time as me or more recently and I’ve watched as their follower count has flown up while mine has moved slower than a centipede with 50 legs.

It’s something that does get me down but I’ve realised there are some people who naturally have the right style of writing for their audience to want to read and there are some people who have had spotless photography from day 1.

I’m not anything like that and blogging has been a developing journey for me. It’s fun looking back on how I’ve progressed in the last year and I know I still have so far to go.

There are 2 types of blogging.

One is a more personal orientated style of blogging and the other is more audience orientated. I’m trying to turn my blog into a mix of the two over the next few weeks.

The personal orientated blogs tend to be more online diaries and a space to think openly for the author. In my opinion, each post is a lot more raw and less time is spent editing every single word of the post and more time is put into the actual meaning behind the words. Audience orientated blogs are written to be read and the posts are designed with the audience in mind. Photos, layout and subject are key. The posts are designed to make the audience learn something or to help them.

I’m not saying either one is better than the other or anything like that, but it’s really interested me to see how each blogger approaches blogging.

You may have the ideas but not the time.

I started out 2017 with the plan to blog every 3 days, it worked for a bit, then I took a break, then it worked for a bit, then I took a break and so on.

It just wasn’t maintainable. I had enough ideas for each post but not the time to write them. I found it very frustrating and decided that blogging every 3 days just isn’t manageable for me.

Yes, I could prioritize blogging a bit more over other things but this year, those ‘other things’ have been GCSE revision so that’s not really a good idea!

Hence the lack of posts in the last few weeks… I think I’ve sorted out a more manageable schedule for when I get back to school in September so hopefully, I won’t end up taking so many big blogging breaks!!

Visuals do mean a lot to the reader.

When I first started out, I thought that it was the words that mattered most in a blog post and obviously they do matter but if the post doesn’t look appealing or is just big blocks of text, they won’t read it.

It needs to be appealing.

Writing is something I really enjoy but design is a part that I struggle a lot more with and wasn’t something I thought would be a part of blogging when I started up.

I really do want to improve my ‘look’ because nothing is more satisfying than a blog with perfectly put together layout, design and photos.

A Niche isn’t necessary but it helps depending what your goal is.

I don’t know if you can tell, but I don’t have a niche at all, I write about whatever I want. When I google things like ‘How to improve at Blogging’ (and yes, I google that a lot!), one reoccurring tip I see is, ‘Have a niche’.

For me, I can’t think of a specific niche that I wanted to write about so I decided I’d have a go at everything and decide later. I think that’s the best decision for me as I realised you don’t need a niche.

If you want to grow big or get lots of repeat visitors, it helps if you have a specific topic to base your blog around as you attract the people who are interested in that topic but, for me, I think I’d lose interest in writing about the same sort of thing every week.

So, yes, if your aim is to grow a big following quickly and become a big blog, I think that a niche helps but if you’re just doing it for the fun of it, you do you!

There’s so much info on the web.

I started out just making stuff up as you go along with my blog but I can’t help thinking how much more successful this blog would be if I’d read all the info I could get my hands on before hand but to be honest, since starting blogging last year, my focus has completely shifted from ‘MUST BE A BIG BLOGGER’ to Actually, this blogging thing’s quite fun’.

To be honest, it had never occurred to me that bloggers would share their tips because I had expected it to be a much more competitive community than it is. I never expected people to help each other and it warms my heart to see everyone being so supportive of each other.

My biggest tip to a new blogger is, make the most of the information available and use it!

So here we have it. I have officially been blogging for one year and while I might have summed up some of my biggest lessons here, I have learnt so much.

I’d like to take the opportunity to tell anyone reading this, even if it’s the first time you’ve come across my blog, thank you. I have enjoyed it so much and I promise I have some great things up my sleeves for the next few months, please stick around!

Happy 1st Birthday Life in Kateish!




Life · Summer

Mini things of fun under the Sun

When it comes to summer, I always have BIG plans and then on the days where I don’t have something planned, I tend to get bored.

My aim this summer is to not have a single day of boredom and actually do something every day. Now obviously, I can’t fill my time chock-a-block with things to do because I do need a rest but I don’t want to waste a day.

I don’t want to have a day where I just lounge about in PJs all day because, for me, that’s not something I enjoy, it just makes me feel lazy.

So anyway, I came up with a few things that will fill up some time in the next few months.

Films to Watch

  • See Everything Everything the movie
  • Watch Despicable me 3
  • Rewatch Grease
  • Watch the Princess Diaries
  • Have a Chickflick movie marathon
  • Watch the Harry Potter films I haven’t watched yet (movies 6&8)
  • Finally get around to watching a Miss Marple film
  • Watch Gossip Girl

Things to Bake

  • Make a Bakewell tart
  • Make s’mores
  • Make macaroons
  • Bake a rainbow layer cake
  • Make a smoothie bowl
  • PYO strawberries
  • Make Banana Bread

Places to go

  • Go to the Cereal Killer cafe
  • Visit Molly’s Bakes
  • Take photos at God’s own junkyard
  • Find the most photogenic place I can
  • Visit pretty gardens

Random Bits n bobs

  • Collab with a brand on a post
  • Try yoga or Pilates
  • Have a complete cupboard clean out
  • Do a car boot sale
  • learn a song on the ukulele
  • do something out-of-characteristicly bold
  • Play messy twister
  • Try out new school proof hairstyles
  • Have a massive spending spree
  • Go on a photo shoot
  • Burn all my GCSE school work
  • Repaint my bedroom white
  • spend a day without my phone

Beauty stuff

  • Dye (part of) my hair pastel
  • Learn to fill in eyebrows
  • Learn to do eyeliner

I know this is a bit of a random list but if they were similar, I think I’d get bored!

What things should I add to this list?



Goals · Life · Summer · Uncategorized

Yeah, we’re gonna blog, blog, blog, blog to the top!

As you probably read in my recent posts, I’m trying to blog as much as possible this summer. Maybe everyday, maybe not but whatever I do manage will be a huge step up on what I’ve been blogging about in the last few months.

Of course, with blogging more, normally comes more interaction with your blog from both you and the readers and so I decided to set goals for this summer to help me.

I seem to have goal posts on my blog all the time but the reason for that is because I enjoy setting myself things to do and I also find that if I have them written out here on the internet for everyone to see, I’m more likely to do them.

I know everyone says not to focus on numbers but instead your enjoyment and happiness when blogging, and I am trying to do that, but I have set some numerical goals for this summer to help make sure I keep working hard on it.

I think, and I might be wrong here, that it would be very easy for me to rush posts just so I’m posting something everyday but that’s not what I want. People following you helps you know if people are enjoying what you’re writing and will hopefully make sure I take the time to make every post the best they can be.

I really want this summer to be the time my blog progresses from an averagely bad blog to one that people want to read and one that shows how much I love blogging. I’ve been blogging for over a year now, it’s time to take it to the next level.


Current Followers: 183   Wanted Followers: 250 (Need 67)


Current Followers: 146  Wanted Followers: 200 (Need 54)


Current Followers: 780 Wanted Followers: 1000 (Need 220)


Current Followers: 257 Wanted Followers: 1000 (Need 743)

I also have some non-numerical goals because who doesn’t love a good goal to get them motivated?

Come up with better blog titles.

My titles always tell the reader what the blog post is about but it doesn’t really give a reason to draw them in.

I can’t help but read other people’s blogs and think ‘I wish I could come up with titles that make even the slightly mundane sounding posts sound so interesting’. You know what I mean?

I want to have a play around with the titles of my posts and be less direct and to the point. I want them to intrigue the reader as, hopefully, this title did? (Also bonus points if you get the semi-play on words in the title… High School Musical, anyone? I don’t think it was very obvious…)

Use twitter for more than just promotion.

I was having a look on my twitter the other day and it occurred to me that I honestly don’t know why people follow me. All I post on there is constant blog post promotions, I don’t share life stories or thoughts or jokes.

I’m not going to stop the promotion because, while I do sometimes feel bad about how much I promote my blog posts, it works as people do actually read them. Not many people, but people nonetheless!

I want to start to use twitter to keep people updated on my life and things and just start interacting with people instead of just sending them all constant links of my latest post.

Make a blog Pinterest.

I have Pinterest but I mainly use it for saving workout ideas and motivation.

I don’t really know much about how to use it at all but even when I’ve done a bit of searching, I’ve seen so many posts saying how much Pinterest helped bring traffic to their blogs and I thought I’d at least have a go at Pinterest.

It can’t go that wrong can it? I’ll keep you updated!

Tell my friends about my blog.

I’ve never purposefully not told my friends about my blog. To begin with, I wasn’t even friends with them when I created this blog and then afterwards, I was never proud enough of it to feel it would interest them.

I hope at some point this summer I will be proud of it and therefore want to tell them about it. If they found out about it now, I wouldn’t be embarrassed or annoyed but I would like to get to the point where I’m happy with it before I tell them.

After all, a lot of my blog post ideas come from conversations I’ve had with them so I think they should at least get to know what their conversations prompt.

Get an Instagram theme.

Ah, the sacred and sought-after Instagram theme!

I just don’t have enough photos to keep up a theme but I hope that as I’ll be taking so many photos this summer for my blog posts, I should have enough to keep me ‘stocked up’ and actually increase my following from the 200 and something it’s been on for the last 6 months!

We’ll have to see if I can manage it, we’ll have to see… And if I get the hang of Instagram, I’d love to start using Instagram stories too! Although I do hate my voice so maybe only photos not videos!

So I have a lot of aims blogging wise and one that I haven’t mentioned above is, get to know some new bloggers so leave your links down below and tell me 1 thing you want to do ‘blog wise’ this summer.




Life · Summer

About last Summer

I wish I could live my whole life like I live during the Summer.

I don’t live some crazy lifestyle during the summer but it’s just so much more enjoyable not having to think about school and work. I’m really trying to appreciate the holidays in the next few years as much as I can because I’m aware that eventually, holidays will be rare. Ugh, adulthood!

This summer is shaping up to be amazing!

It may be even better than last summer.. And last summer was definitely the best summer I’ve ever had so I thought today, on the first day of summer 2017, it would be fun to look back on July and August 2016 and re-live those memories.

Summer 2016 was back-to-back trips. I’m not joking or exaggerating when I say I had 5 days at home all summer and it was awesome but exhausting. Especially for my mum who had to hurriedly stuff all my clothes in the wasking machine in the hours between trips.

I definitely don’t have enough clothes to go travelling like that for long!

I didn’t really do many small events. Everything was a big trip and I honestly made some of my best memories then.

Last summer was the first time I really ventured out alone. I’ve travelled without family but never before had I travelled overseas without family or school. It wasn’t like I travelled across the world, just France, but it was definitely an experience…

I’m not going to say I was totally calm with it because there was half an hour when I was stranded in a french train station without being able to contact anyone. Or understand what the signs said!

But I lived to tell the tale!

And I travelled for the first time without an adult leader as a group for 2 weeks and went on my first long (ish) haul flight.

I also celebrated my birthday without my family for the first time and spent well over my budget on my phone bill.

I visited where my parents met and kissed and lived during their uni years. It was interesting but I’m not going to lie, parts of the stories they told us about their time there did gross me out!!

We also attended a family reunion thing which I enjoyed. We’re very close with some family members but not with others. For example, how did I not know that one of my cousins was pregnant and another of them had got married?!

We followed the reunion with a trip to Edinburgh and then onto another part of Scotland to visit more of my family. That wasn’t anything new, we visit them at least twice a year but it was a big dream of mine to visit Edinburgh.

Not going to lie, I was a bit disappointed by Edinburgh. It wasn’t as pretty as I thought it would be and there wasn’t as much to do.

I still enjoyed it though especially getting to see the café that Harry Potter was written in!

France was wonderful and although I found it difficult to express what I wanted to express, my host family were wonderful and helped me so much with my french, which reminds me, I must invite the girl back here.

I could happily live in France because the weather is so lovely even in the north, or at least it was while I was there, and the best day I spent there was a trip to a zoo just over the Belgian border. It was unlike any zoo I’ve visited before. England, you need to step your zoo game up! The eurotunnel was suprisingly easy and I managed to end up with a window seat both times. You know, the important stuff!

And then, YALC.

For those who don’t know, YALC is the Young Adult Literature Convention which takes place at the same time as Comic Con in London.

I was so nervous about going as I didn’t know ANYONE (other than my mum!) but it was so much fun and I think I spent the most money I have ever spent in my whole life. I even spent my emergency money which my parents weren’t too happy with but to be fair, getting those extra books was essential…

And I got to meet Holly Smale aka my absolute favourite person! I have a framed copy of the photo with her in my bedroom. If you want to know more, I did a post on it HERE! I’m sad not to be attending this year but don’t worry, I’ll be back!!

THE trip of the summer was definitely my venture off to America and Canada.

I always promised to write a post afterwards rounding up our travels but I never did so here’s a quick whistle-stop tour.

The trip was with Guides (Equivilant of Girl Scouts for Americans) and had taken over a year to plan. I was travelling out with 5 other girls the same age as me and 2 older girls to act as our leaders. We travelled to New York, to Niagara, to Toronto, to Montreal, to Boston and back to New York.

It was amazing! I loved spending my birthday at the Niagara Falls (I doubt any birthday will top that) and just generally being  tacky tourists! Given we were on such tight budgets, we got to do so much of the general touristy stuff such as The Empire State Building and Rockafeller Centre, The CN Tower in Toronto and all that jazz.

It was a year in the planning and I cannot believe its already been another year since this.

The final week was spent with my family, living on a boat and travelling down the Thames.

We were blessed by the weather and so it honestly felt like a holiday abroad. We got to visit so many places my family knows well but from the river side and it was so funny what different impressions it gave us of the places!

And really I didn’t do much else.

I told you there were no small events but trust me, I loved every single minute, even after discovering I can’t sleep on overnight buses and so had to spend a few nights awake! (luckily they weren’t all in a row!)

Roll on this summer!




Goals · Life · Summer · Uncategorized

Plans for the Summer

I’ve always said that last summer was the best summer I’ll ever have but I have to say, this summer is definitely going to challenge 2016 for 1st place.

With 11 weeks of holiday which started yesterday, I have lots of plans and I’m so excited so let’s have a little look at 15 things I’m doing/looking forward to this summer.

If you want to have a look at what I was looking forward to this time last year, you can find my 2016 post HERE.

Some of these events are bigger or smaller than others but they’re all things I can’t wait for. I can’t believe I’ve got through all my exams (apart from Physics tomorrow) and that I’m finally about to experience the summer I’ve spent the last few weeks/months planning.

Anyway, without further ado, let’s talk about this summer!


I know that the main aim of Prom will end up being just to get nice photos to go on Instagram but oh well, I’m excited.

I finally found a dress in April (I was one of the last in my year to get one) and it will be very exciting. I’m not going all out like some of the other girls in my year, I’ll probably just do my hair and makeup myself, but I imagine it’ll be the first ‘ball-style’ event of many considering I’m aiming to go to University and I think there are lots of formal dinner style events there.

Not going to lie, I’m very excited for the dinner but especially pudding, although I’m not sure if I’m going to be able to eat it given how tight my dress is!

I’m also pretty chuffed that I’ve been nominated for the ‘Kindest Friend to all’ award at Prom. I don’t really care about the prom awards but that was the only ‘serious’ award and it means so much to be nominated. I won’t win but I honestly don’t care, the nomination is enough!


To row at Henley is one of any rower’s main goals in life and no, I’m not rowing there yet, I’m nowhere near that good!

Anyway, I’m just going to watch with my dad and my best friend but we’re going to one of the posh clubs and so it’s another event to dress up for! It’s a very formal dress code (i.e. the dress must cover the knees and no trousers are allowed for Ladies…) I’m still trying to find a dress but I will let you know when I find one!

I went to Henley (the town) last year while I was on holiday and the weather was lovely so I really hope it’s as nice weather this year. I’m also hoping it will sort of inspire me to work on my rowing technique so that one day I can go to Henley…

Olly Murs

Again with my best friend, but Olly Murs is performing in our city and while we’re not his number 1 fans, we didn’t feel we could miss out on it as nobody ever comes to our city.

He’s also being supported by Louisa Johnson which we’re very excited for as we are big fans of her and that was just chance that she’s performing. It’s an outside performance so I really hope the weather’s good!

I’ve been spending the last few months listening to his songs so that I know them as I don’t know many of his songs since the ones from 2011 which is when I last saw him. I would hate to be stood them pretending I know the songs he’s singing while everyone else around me is dancing and singing along!

In case you can’t tell, I don’t really go to concerts so this is quite a new experience for me!

Spending lots of time with my friends

Last summer, I only met up with a friend once after the term ended. That’s once in 8 weeks! To be fair, I didn’t really have any close friends last year which not only shows me what a difference a year makes, but also makes me determined to have amazing memories with my friends this summer.

I feel like we don’t have much planned but I also know when we get around to it, it will actually be jam-packed full of things. There’s only one week where we all free of the whole 11 weeks so we have so much we want to do.

I also have lots of little things planned individually with them and it will be great to hang out without at least one of us stressing about school or exams.

Turning 16


A month after I turn 16, my best friends start to turn 17. I’m such a baby in comparison!! I can’t wait for my birthday, 16 seems such a big birthday. I mean I just can’t wait to buy a scratch card (that was sarcastic btw!)

So much has been waiting until I turn 16. No one will let me visit on work experience for example. I can’t watch a cat having its nails clipped when I’m 15 and 364 days but I can as soon as I turn 16. How weird is that?

Don’t people realise that a 16-year-old could be so much more immature than a 11-year-old. I know it’s all to do with insurance and stuff but I feel being 16 will bring so much more freedom, we’ll have to wait and see…


I have lots of plans for Shopping this summer as all my plans to shop since before Christmas have been ruined by a rowing event (I’m not really complaining) or revision (this I am complaining about!) and I can’t wait to shop shop shop with all £0 in my account!

I have a little shopping excursion (I called it that because it’s a bigger than a trip) planned with my best friend and hopefully there will be a few hauls on here this season. I never know if people enjoy hauls or not, I guess it depends what the haul is of…


I’m spending a few days in London with my aunt and her family as soon as my brother finishes school and we don’t have anything planned but I’m sure we’ll have lots to do once we get there.

I like London in small doses so I am looking forward to it however crowded it may be. I’m hoping there will be lots of opportunities to take photos and maybe a bit of time to shop (in case I have any money left over from everything else I’m doing!)


If you read my summer goals post and were a bit confused as to why I might be killed walking 10,000 steps a day, this is your answer.

I highly doubt that I’ll be able to walk 10,000 steps everyday while I’m on a safari, I think we’ll be spending most our time in a jeep or something. I might be wrong but that’s my expectation.

Anyway, this holiday has been designed as a ‘trip of a lifetime’ by my parents to celebrate the end of my GCSEs and we’ll be spending a week and a half visiting all sorts of places all over Tanzania.

We’re going during migration so I think the animals we see will be there in big numbers and I have my fingers crossed that it’ll provide some great photography possibilities as well as some great memories.


After a week and a half on safari, we’re heading to Zanzibar for a bit of relaxation.

From looking at the photos of the beaches I’m really excited as its beautiful! Do google it if you need something nice to look at.

I’m really not aiming to do much this week other than relax and tan. I know, I’m so fickle but oh well! Our packing limit for the combined trip of Tanzania and Zanzibar is tiny and so I imagine all I’ll be wearing in Zanzibar is bikinis and swimsuits. That suits me!

I love the idea of one day living within walking distance to a beach. We’ll have to wait and see if that ever happens…

Alton Towers

This might sound a bit crazy but I’ve never been to a ‘theme park’ before other than LEGOLAND and I’m finally heading somewhere a bit more adventurous.

I’m going with my 7 close friends plus my parents as an early birthday trip and I can’t wait to go on all the rides. I really hope it doesn’t turn out that I’m scared of rollercoasters…

I also might try to visit CeeBeebies land because CeeBeebies was my childhood!! I really can’t wait but I do have no idea what it will be like.

All my friends went as a group last summer (It was before I was friends with them, they didn’t just leave me out!) and they were the ones who recommended we went back so it must be good!

Work experience

As I was talking about above, nowhere was happy to take me on for work experience until I was 16 so literally the day after I turn 16, I’m off for a week of work experience with my local vets.

I really hope I get to be a part of everything as I know one of my friends just spent her week making cups of tea and stuff.

I spent some of Easter holidays in Cambridge visiting the vet school there and it really got me excited for becoming a vet not that I actually have any experience in the operation side of things so I’m not going to lie, I’m a bit nervous that I’ll discover that I’m squeamish or that veterinary isn’t for me because I’ve spent such a long time preparing to be a vet and I would hate it if it turned out I didn’t actually want to be one…

Spending time with my family

I know I talked above about how much I had planned to do with my friends but I also have a few big things planned with my family.

For example Tanzania and Zanzibar and then up to Scotland to visit other family members.

The last year, I feel like I haven’t seen my family much, I mean they’ve been there for hugs and encouragement but I haven’t really taken much interest in their lives as I’ve been revising or rowing or they’ve been working.

I can’t wait to basically catch up with them and let them know how grateful I am for them and all they do to help me.

I don’t think I let them know how much I appreciate them anywhere near enough.


Not going to lie, I think parties are going to play a prominent part of my summer.

I know, you read that right, I’m actually getting invited to parties. Not the popular popular parties but parties none the less!!

I’m very excited as so many of my friends had their birthdays during exams (I know, poor them!) so we have lots of parties to catch up on as my last proper party was in January and my last birthday ‘meet-up’ was in April. Exams have ruined the partying mood…

Don’t worry, we’re going to make up for the break in parties. The thing I dislike the most about parties is the fact we need to have nice clothes.

I don’t really have many clothes that I like/ are suitable but hopefully after all the shopping I have planned this will be a lot easier!

Blogging everyday

This is my aim at least.

I know I’ve been an awful blogger in the last few weeks so don’t worry I have lots of blog posts planned. I aim to publish a post everyday but to be honest, I’m not going to promise that as I want to focus on enjoying what I have planned for this summer and publish a post as much as I have one written.

I want to broaden my blog ideas so that some blog post might be long and impersonal while others might be short and more personal, if you know what I mean. I want to just write about what I like sometimes rather than a long, planned post.

There will be some of those too but I’d love my blog to feature more of my thoughts and opinions and stories of things I’ve done.

Hopefully, you’ll all enjoy what’s on it way. If anyone wants to collab at some point this summer, let me know down in the comments!

Boat club dinner

I’ve been rowing at my boat club for 3 years now and I’ve never been to Boat Club dinner for various reasons. Last year I was on my D of E expedition for example.

This year I can finally go and it requires another dress! This is more of a cocktail style event but it should be a lot of fun as all my friends also row so it’s another event of the 8 of us.

This is 2 days before Prom so it’s going to be a few great days! There will some great food, great opportunities to get photos with my friends and to celebrate the past year of rowing. Only the small matter of finding another dress before then!

I hope you enjoyed what hopefully is the first of many blog posts this summer. It’s really exciting to see everything big I have planned for this summer written out on one page. Ahhh, I can’t wait for all this!

What are you looking forward to this summer?

I’d love it if you shared this post with your friends so that they know that I’m back on the blogging roll!