A Quarter-Century Old

Today I turn 25!

I guess this is considered somewhat of a milestone in life? I never really reflect much on age, or really talk about my age much, so this kinda crept up on me. I suppose it's because I've felt a lot older for some time. Whenever anyone I know in "real life" finds out my age, they always seem surprised and say that I seem a lot older. I take that as a compliment.

I don't really understand the obsession with youth. When you are young, you aren't taken seriously (at least, that's what I found). You go through the drama of school, college, university, and finally getting a job. I'm always somewhat glad when people assume I'm older, because I equate that to being more headstrong and confident. Hopefully more cultured and informed, too.

When discussing this theme with a colleague recently, they mentioned that I seemed "accomplished", which, I guess, is right. I never really thought much about what I'd want to do or where I'd want to be in 5 years from now. I didn't set myself any goals when I was 20. I take things as they come, and if something isn't right in my life, I work on it to improve it. 


Me at 19 or 20 in my University bedsit, shortly before going out.

I do recognize that I've been incredibly privileged in my life, but I have also worked hard. I've had a middle class upbringing with loving parents, I'm an only child, I went to a good school (although it was a comprehensive/state school, not private), a good college and a good university. I had some level of financial support once I left university and got any retail job I could. I learned very quickly how to look after myself and others, leaving home at 18 to first stay in a bedsit, then with 4 other girls and finally in a 2 bed flat with my boyfriend. 

Back to the work aspect; in the 2 retail jobs I had prior to my current job, I tended to "move up" (albeit with little financial movement) in my position and responsibilities. In one of the jobs I ended up training people who were twice my age, while still doing all the other tasks that were expected of me, with a topping of rude customers. Of course there were times that I felt stuck in a rut, with little chance of moving up in the company, and few exciting opportunities coming by.

Luckily I did eventually see an opening, and it was an advertisement for a Shop Manager role at Playful Promises. I went to the interview, and I can't remember exactly how the events happened, but the brand director, Emma, saw skills in me that would be better suited to a different role in the company. So, I became the Marketing Assistant. All those years of "wasting time" on the Internet had translated into skills that are actually valued in the Social Media industry. 

That was in 2011, now 3 years later I'm the Brand Manager. It's my idea of a perfect job. I do all the things that I love doing, such as marketing, photography, social media; and working on skills that I feel I could develop further, such as selling B2B and managing other people.

Along with a full time job, I've also co-developed, marketed and worked as part of a DJ duo called The Roustabouts. This includes putting on our own club/cabaret nights. One of them being every week DURING THE CHRISTMAS SEASON. Not only was I tackling the xmas retail customers and preparing for the January tradeshows at work, but I was working every single weekend (of course there was gin involved but can you blame me?). And then there's the occasional photoshoots I'd been fitting in there as well. 

So, yes, I suppose what I'm saying is that I am somewhat accomplished, but it hasn't just fallen into my lap. And despite my rather dry and sarcastic humor, I am happy and comfortable with what I've achieved so far. I've even booked my boyfriend and I a 5* holiday in Prague in August (the first REAL holiday I've been on in years and years)!

Although I would like a nicer flat to live in. New goal for the next 5 years ;)


Baby Anna!

This Month In Pictures

What I've been up to during february, via my instagram @swiczeniuk!

Top Left - Lovely Miss Miranda and her boyfriend Anthony bought me some amazing boxed gin for my birthday. I really love gin, just in case you wondered ;)

Top Right - I had a small gathering on Saturday, and my boyfriend organised lots of lovely early hollywood themed treats, including a camera-shaped pinata! Look at these Charlie Chaplin napkins!!!

Bottom Left - Shooting my new headdress from Reinka!

Bottom Right - The Burning Beat's stage manager/mcee, Jon, is teaching me how to sword fight! The swords may have come out once the club was over and we were a bit drunk...... 

Top Left - One of my old university housemates, Katie, moved to Japan to teach! To send her off we had a lovely gathering, which included doing purikura.

Top Right - Shooting a beautiful size 14 model for Playful Promises, I'll post the photos soon!

Bottom Left - The location I scouted for the shoot. I adore the way it was decorated.

Bottom Right - Some of you may know I'm a Game of Thrones fangirl (I'm just about to finish the last available book). So when Kit Harrington (a.k.a Jon Snow) turned up for a night out at The Burning Beat, I had to have a slightly embarrassing conversation with him and force him to take a photo with me. He was so nice, and said he was really enjoying our music - hooray!

Top Left and Top Right - Outfit shots! Slight change to my red and gold, this time I went for red, silver and black.

Bottom Left - My boyfriend makes amazing breakfasts!

Bottom Right - This headdress was lurking unused in my closet, so I gave it a spruce and added embellishments.

Happy (belated) Birthday to me!

Yes, I am a bit late, but I turned 23 on the 13th! 

I had a fairly quiet birthday, seeing a few friends on the Saturday before for dinner at my favourite restaurant, dinner with my boyfriend and parents the day before and then a nice relaxing day off work on the day! My boyfriend had set up a few surprises for me during the day, to make me feel special (and very lucky).

It seems I also had a lot of cake. Which I'm not complaining about.


My colleagues are too lovely <3


HUGE (as big as my face) meringue for dessert with my parents

Look what arrived in the mail!!!

Another gift from my sweetheart.


He also came home with champagne and chocolates, and we sat in bed watching the Charlie Chaplin Revue. Best birthday I've had for a long time!


My birthday!

On the 13th March I turned the (not so) grand age of 22! 

I actually ended up celebrating with friends a week beforehand, at the Boom Boom Club, which took place in the Bathhouse. It was great fun to see all my friends again, many of whom live some way out of London. I also had an amazing outfit custom made by Sample Remix! 

For my REAL birthday day my parents took myself and my boyfriend down to King's Road for lunch at The Bluebird, so tasty! We also ended up spending far too much money in a shop which seems to have everything we must have for our flat.... oh dear. I will try to take some proper photographs of how we have started decorating our flat with the various props, antiques and weird bits and pieces we own!

My boyfriend also had some beautiful flowers delivered for me (which came in a hat box), while he was at work on Saturday!