Gwennan Rees

Blogger and Illustrator

An Open Letter To My Blog Squad.

An Open Letter To My Blog Squad.


To my gaggle of blogging friends, 

I write this sort of letter as a sort of thank you in the only way I deemed appropriate - online for the whole world to see. It is of course how we met, via Twitter chats that turned into a DM that turned into a blogging event that turned into a whatsapp group that turned into some of my very best friends. 

I mention you all A LOT on my blog, on my Instagram and on my Twitter. We're that kind of group that share memes only we get, write cryptic in jokes online and the type of group everyone loves who always talk about how funny they are. But I thought it was a relevant time to discuss a lil more why I think you're all great (and why I think I'm a pretty great member of the group too). 

This letter is thanks for the Whatsapp group.  For the one that lasted a year and was sacrificed along with Sarah's phone in The Great Paddling Pool Accident of 2017 and now remains in the archives and for the one I took on as admin. For the one that was full of secrets for Mel's birthday party, the one that was for GBBO spoilers and the one with Kit Harrington's bum as the icon for GOT spoilers. For the time that Nina left because we talked too much shit and we all sat there like idk what to do now she's gone. For the 400+ notifications daily and the summaries you give and the fun we have when we're split all over the country. Most of us in Leicester. 

This letter is thanks for the blog support and motivation, for what the group was originally intended for and has surpassed and more. For the constant "you go gal" support, for the retweets, for the pins, for the shoutouts and the Instagram spam comments. For the help on no follow links, for moving to Squarespace and navigating Wordpress. For the photography tips, for the video tips, for the shares, for the recommendations, for the bullet journal flip throughs, for the previews to posts and the ideas we've shared. For the most Instagrammable photo walk (which was 100% Sarirah's idea) and the most satisfying productive day in Hampshire working on content and ideas on the biggest table with all the snacks that left me riding on motivation for weeks. 

This letter is thanks for the general life support that comes with sharing your deepest darkest secrets with friends. For the daily 'guys can I just have a rant?', for the support, for the agreeing, for the suggestions, for the advice, for the sympathy and for the empathy. For the help with holidays to business to finances to cars to geography to hobbies to university to clothes to netflix recs. For the fact we can, and do, talk about ANYTHING, for the lack of boundaries, for the constant 'guys TMI' when we know it's not too much info. For the blue ticks letting us know we're all there, for the names we've dropped and the lack of 'my brother' because those names are as familiar to us now as our own siblings. For the range of conversation from politics and mortgages to social media and the latest outrage to blowies and bowel movements.

This letter is thanks for the humour, for the nonstop bloody belly ache laughing. For the nicknames, for the couples names, for the icon changes and the name changes and the typos. For Sue Pringle, for Melk, for pure golf, for XS SNOKR Q and Brian Buchannan and anything Mel has ever written. For the genuine lols, for the silently shaking because you can't laugh out loud, for the proper roaring with laughter when we're all together, both on the chat and in real life. For the horrific pictures of each other, for the hideous selfies and for all our boyfriends who have to suffer the endless 'what're you laughing at?"...."oh just my blogging friends". For the chipmunk vs squirrel saga that nearly ended our friendship.

This letter is thanks for the pictures, the videos and the voicenotes. For the video of Mel yodelling, for Mel falling on her arse, for Mel trying to do a handstand drunk, for Mel doing an impression of a seal. Basically thank you for Mel. For Sarah waving at a bus, for the pictures from the loo, for the subtly taking pictures of things around us or surreptitious selfies at work. For the voice notes of how we pronounce words to the ones of pure laughter, especially Sarah's. We don't think it's too loud <3

This letter is thanks to Effi for trying to desperately hard to get us to clean our rooms, to chuck out all our shit and recognise that we don't need everything we're holding on to (and forgiving us when we fail.) For the fajitas when we went away and not being the fussiest eater there. For the absolute girl boss vibe you always bring and making us feel like we could maybe at least have half the motivation you do one day. And for the most exciting wedding invite ever and the chance to dress up all fancy. 

This letter is thanks to Mel for the sarcasm, for the bants and for the 'only Mel' situations you always share. For succumbing to peer pressure and showing us THAT Youtube video, for sharing you feature in the newspaper and for being on 24 hours in A&E and making us feel like we're pals with a famous. For sitting on that ladybird roller in the Party Barn even thought you knew you'd fall off and for the best secret santa present and the best surprise birthday card ever when I really needed a Theresa May card in my life.  

This letter is thanks to Sarah for having the balls to bring us all together and forcing us to be friends in the first place. For the driving me to London, for the soup spoon business plan and for the classic quote 'I can't park, my arms are too flaccid'. For the ultimate relationship goals and english country life goals, for the absolute best laugh and for being the mastermind behind the cutest blogging picnic ever. For letting me park at your Mum's house (thanks to your Mum), for smashing 2017 out the park and for being the most fun road trip partner ever. 

This letter is thanks to Hannah for being so. fucking. cool the rest of us aspire to be you at every turn. For sharing allll the music and tv recommendations, for making us believe in the magic of Quorn nuggets, for the constant tech advice and for trying as hard as you might to come and meet us for a day when you'd just had a tattoo. For the 5 seats in your car, for the enviable photography, for finding us good holidays and for being the ultimate blogging queen we all aspire to be like.

This letter is proof that online friendships can become the best of in real life friendships. That the strangers you spoke to on a Twitter chat can end up being just as great, if not even better face to face, can end up being some of your most valued loved ones, can be the people you go on holiday with and even guests at your wedding. This letter is proof that millennials make friendships in an entirely new and different way, that those friendships are just as real and true and heartfelt as those you first made in Primary school and that not all people online are weird old men. Although meeting up with strangers is still v much not advised, I just got lucky with this lot that only one of them was a 43 year old divorced bloke. I'll let you work out with one. 

This letter is a recognition of what we've achieved and been through since getting together in the summer of 2016. It's recognition of 2017 and everything it brought for all of us and for the motivation we have together for the next year. It's for our good days and our bad days which always seem to fall in step together. It's for the two breakups we've witnessed, the three (ish?) house moves we've seen, the countless job interviews we've wished luck on, the handful of job changes we've celebrated, the umpeenth holidays we've lived vicariously, the three new relationships we've cheered on, the one wedding planned and the millions of blog posts we've seen published. We're all a lot different and a lot the same since we formed a little gang about 18 months ago and we've all had our shittier than shit moments and our happiest of joys and all the mundane bits in between and we've shared everything together, in person or on the end of a phone. 

For me though this letter is a thank you primarily for just being there for the last year or so. For being on the end of a message when I need a rant or for sympathising when I need to vent. For empathy when I need to understand everyone feels like this, for not trying to understand a situation if it's not called for and for just letting me get it all out. For the impartial advice that is NEVER unsolicited, for trying to take the weight off and for not a single ounce of judgement. This letter is a thank you for the countless times I've poured my all into a whatsapp text or for sitting around that table in the party barn pouring my soul out well into the night. For sharing stories so I know it's not just me, for listening, for talking, for working it out, for not working it out but accepting that's fine too. For never slagging someone off or getting personal or incredulous, for always being level headed and calm when it's needed and outraged and angry when that's needed to. This letter is for appearing when I didn't even know I needed a group of internet strangers, for letting me open up slowly but surely to the most personal things about me, my life, my family and my relationships and for letting me into yours. 

This letter is a thank you for coming into my life at exactly the right time. 

Now let's book a weekend away shall we? 



Neil. Or Gwennan. Whichever you prefer. 


























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