This year they were to be held in Glasgow which is miles & miles away from where I live but as its such an important event on the sporting calendar I knew my mum would take me no matter what!
My coach Alex Pinniger has done so much for me over the years & I know I'm not the easiest of people to put up with so I decided to ask him along as my guest to say thank you for everything.
By day two after asking him, I really wished I hadn't he was so excited & just didn't shut up about it & he wasn't even back in the country yet haha! I was pleased really because it's not an event that anyone can go to with VIP treatment & I knew I had made him happy!
It wasn't going to be a straight forward journey because I was competing in the Arena league in Coventry on the afternoon of Saturday 13th December which is about 3 hours from my home & to go back home then drive to Glasgow the next morning was going to be very tiring!
My mum decided that she would get up extra early on the Saturday to get the dogs out, then drive over to Norwich to collect Alex, then drive us to Coventry to meet up with the team where we all competed together in the Arena League. When it had all finished my mum drove us from Coventry to Preston where we stopped to have an evening meal & then mum carried on driving to Glasgow.
We tried to stay awake as long as we could to keep mum company but by 11pm me & Alex were both snoring & mum was still driving through the wind, rain & even snow in some parts!
We arrived at our hotel at 1am on the Sunday morning, I am so proud of my mum she takes me everywhere & never complains (well only a little, it could be worse haha!). We all went to our rooms & planned to have a really nice lay in.
I woke to my mum moaning at the cleaner 'it's 7:45am on a Sunday morning...You cant just walk in!' with that the cleaner left & I knew mum wouldn't be able to get back to sleep so we went to breakfast.
I had arranged to meet my friend Nicole Lough with her brother Ryan in the evening & I was really excited about seeing her, we have done lot's of room shares together on training camps & she is an amazing Breast stroke swimmer, I would love to be as good as she is!
As it was so early we decided to walk into Glasgow city center OMG I have never felt cold like it, it was sleeting & the wind blew so hard I thought I was going to freeze to the pavement.
We found the most amazing Christmas market, it had the loveliest food & drinks to taste, really nice gifts & wooden carvings. There were also some fantastic dogs clothes but I didn't know the sizes of Missy & Patch so I couldn't buy them anything.
I did find something special thou.....one of the coaches at the club 'Nikki Merrill' coaches me when Alex is away & she is Minion mad & there was the cutest keyring & when I saw it it made me think of her so I had to get it for her as a Christmas present.
We decided to go back to the hotel after lunch but by taxi as we had got so cold & needed to start getting reading to meet up with everyone.
They then went out to dinner & watched the show from the hotel restaurant.
It was just amazing.....the pre party was fantastic everyone looked so glamorous & there was a red carpet & gold phone box. We spoke to so many famous sporting hero's it was so great & Alex was in his element.
After the pre party we were taken into the main Arena were they were filming the show...it was massive & thousands upon thousands of people were there. I couldn't believe my luck again, I was seated in the very front row next to Rebecca Adlington so I was really pleased. I had done 'Swim Britain' with Rebecca in September & have got to know her through lots of swimming events we'd been at together so felt comfortable being with her. Alex was seated just 4 rows behind us & was also very pleased with his seat.
As the show went on we all joined in with selfies & the cameras zoomed in on myself & Rebecca a few times so I knew that we would be on the telly, how exciting!!
After the show we went on to the post-show party this was held in the Scottish Exhibition & Conference center, it was fantastic!
We chatted & danced until midnight, it was so nice to be with everyone in a completely different environment & having so much fun.
I had a lovely time & I know that Alex did as he is STILL talking about it now. I would love the opportunity to go again next but I guess I'll just have to wait & see :-)