This photo may give things away a bit!

I would apologise for the complete lack of posts in June so but for the fact that I have been so busy I haven’t physically had time to write – and those posts that I had drafted I didn’t have time to take pictures for and to upload my drafts into the format that they need to be.

In hindsight, I may have bitten off more than I could chew this month and there were times that I felt really overwhelmed. I hate asking for help, I’ve realised that it’s something that I really struggle with but this month I’m very grateful for the help that was forced upon me, offered and asked for- I wouldn’t have got it all done without you.

So what I have I been doing?

Well May ended with the Spice Girls concert in Cardiff with the lovely Kaye and her husband Mark. We danced, sang, ate and may have had a few cheeky drinks!

Kaye and I at the Spice Girls concert in the Principality Stadium

As you can see, in their wisdom the Spice Girls left the roof open so we got absolutely soaked through! But we didn’t let that dampen our spirits even if I did get covered in blue confetti and end up looking like a smurf.

Okay so smurf might be exaggerating slightly but it was difficult to get the confetti off as it stuck to me and I found bits of it in my house when I was doing my final house clean before I left.

So a lot of people were apparently complaining about the sound quality and I do agree that it was bad. It was worse when they were talking to the audience in between songs (you couldn’t really hear them at all) and it did affect the songs too. However, the crowd was singing and dancing, the atmosphere was amazing and I had the BEST night. The Spice Girls (in my opinion) never were the best singers and the production of the concert was amazing, the atmosphere electric. It was one of the best nights that I’ve had in a long time and the sound issue was a small blip. I didn’t see anybody looking like they weren’t having THE best time.

The end of May also marked my last day in work. It was a bit strange because I was in the hospital in the morning and then I went into the office and it was dead. Where I worked it was traditional to gather around somebody’s desk on their last day to say goodbye, I had this gathering on the Wednesday before I left on the Friday so it genuinely was a surprise! The reason why it was on the Wednesday is because hardly anybody in my department has been in the office on a Friday recently. It was just as well that it happen that way because so when I did go back to the office on the Friday it was pretty dead and very strange. I cleaned out my desk (this took ages!) and slunk off.

That evening, we went to one of my favourite place to eat (Wahaca) and then out for cocktails and dancing in Bootlegger – a prohibition themed bar in Cardiff. It was great fun and I danced the night away.

My friend Vera and I in Bootlegger for my work’s leaving do…I’m definitely not drunk…wink wink!

On the Tuesday I then flew out to Kefalonia in Greece. I had never been to Greece before and I wanted to go before I left Europe because it looks so beautiful. I am part way through writing a seperate blog about my holiday so I won’t say to much about it here but I will share the picture below:

The view from the hotel. You can’t see it very well in this picture because I don’t have a fancy camera, but in the distance you can see the island of Ithaca and is the home of Homer’s Odysseus.

While at the airport waiting for my flight home I got an email from the company who did my personal training course advising me that I had passed the course and that I would qualify as a personal trainer. Unfortunately, in the days that came, I received more emails and the sort of it is that the company has gone into liquidation and hasn’t registered me for the course. There was much back and forth but eventually I decided that the best course of action would be to qualify through another company even though it did mean resitting the theory exams again. It wasn’t a decision that I took lightly as anatomy and physiology is a lot of work and if I remember correctly I didn’t pass the exam with a big margin the first time around. I hadn’t studied A+P since February and frankly, I thought I would have forgotten most of it. The only day that I would be able to sit the exam was on on the Monday before I left Cardiff – the day that my shipping was due to be collected. I was pretty nervous about sitting the exams again as I couldn’t see that I’d have much time to revise but I decided that I had to try it.

I then ended up having a really busy few days of packing. Not only did I have to pack/get rid of everything that I own, but I also thought that I had to itemise everything that I packed. This made the process so much longer and so much more difficult. Then on Friday morning when I came to put the wooden crate together for my TV, I had a complete meltdown. I thought that I had to nail the crate together but it came with screws! I managed to borrow a drill from one of my neighbours but it was still somewhat of a disaster with screws breaking and me getting them half stuck. I also was trying to nail the tea cartons together in a way that was basically impossible so my neighbour came to the rescue and basically sorted it all out for me – move saved!

After my shipping left, I turned my attention to the rest of the house but also my family came down to Cardiff for one last weekend together. The plan was that we’d do lots of nice things together with the kids but they actually ended up helping me to sort out my house…oops! But when you’re as busy as I was at that time and there is only one of you, then it’s all hands on deck, and actually, I wouldn’t have got it done without them.

We did manage to get up to Forest Fawr and Castell Coch but the weather was bad by the time that we got up there so I didn’t take any photos. The rest of the time I was too busy so that was a little disappointing. Still, I had a wonderful time and managed to teach my nephews naughty things such as throwing sticks as high as you can in the woods. I also tried to teach my four-year-old nephew how to climb trees but it backfired on me when a whole branch fell down and hit me square on the head!

I was a little emotional when the family left, but that was mainly because both of my nephews were in a mood and refused to say bye to me! I thought that I could rely on the littlest one as he says goodbye and blows kisses to random cats and trees but no!

On the following Monday, I had to make my way down to Cardiff Bay to resit my anatomy and physiology and nutrition exams for my personal training course. I was worried about this as I’d only had time to do three hours of revision in total and I didn’t think that it would be enough. I’d just gone through practice papers to ascertain where my areas of weakness were (basically all of anatomy and some physiology haha!) and then read through the section in my revision notes where I was struggling. I decided not to study anatomy too much because few pure anatomy questions seemed to come up and it would be a lot of work for just a few marks.

I made it down to LA Fitness and I met the guys there (who are lovely) and sat my exams in a local Costa as the quiet room was already being used and I wouldn’t be able to concentrate in a loud gym. To my surprise I passed anatomy and physiology with 90% (higher than my initial score after months of studying) and nutrition I passed with 86% – I’ll take that!

I then went back to do more packing and paperwork and met some friends for dinner and drinks in the evening. The highlight of the whole day was probably cleaning my oven drunk when I got back.

My beloved cat who is staying with my ex-boyfriend (his best friend) for the time being

Tuesday was the big day in a lot of was as I left Cardiff on this day and headed to London where I would be flying out. I had visions of my dad arriving and everything being ready but it was total and utter chaos. I was so stressed and it took hours. We headed out at about 4pm and I left Shiva, my 12-year-old cat, with my ex-boyfriend (who he loves a lot and lived with for 7 years). That also felt quite emotional.

On the Wednesday, I had a nice activity to take my mind off all of the stress of the previous couple of weeks. I went for lunch with my best friend from uni and her baby who I hadn’t met. They are both gorgeous and doing so, so well and we had the most lovely catch up over tacos. In the evening I went out for dinner with my dad and his partner in Welling. There is a fantastic tapas bar there (whose name translates to something rude in Mexican Spanish!) and we had a delicious three-course meal and some wine. When we got back to my dad’s place I then opened a delicious Crianza that I’d been saving.

And along came the big day!!!!! I all felt a bit strange and surreal on the day because I’d been doing so much in the build up to it. I was also half worried that when I got there immigration would turn me away at the airport on some technicality.

I had a lovely breakfast in the airport and a couple of coffees while I finalised my shipping lists for customs. We were then called to the gate on time but got caught up in traffic on the runway! However, although were were over an hour late taking off, we still managed to get to Halifax at the same time.

Not your standard queue (or line up as I’ve learnt the Canadian lingo is!)

Once I landed, I had to do immigration. I thought that Id’ be questioned in a small room for at least an hours Border Patrol style but it was very quick and simple. The Border Agent was lovely, had a good sense of humour and welcomed me to Canada. Next was customs. I had to line up a wait a little while to do this but again the staff were very pleasant and it was soon over.

The boyfriend met me at the airport…just as all my bags were falling off the trolley – somethings never change!

Have you ever moved abroad? Let me know if you’ve actually done it…I’ll take ALL the advice!