On October 3rd, He Asked Me What Day It Was…

So It’s been a pretty chilled weekend, I’ve probably eaten far too much rubbish over the past few days but oh wellll… I WILL GO TO THE GYM TOMORROW

We’re three days into Sober October and the month of Halloween and our house is already draped in decorations inside and out (are we too keen?!) and I love it! I don’t understand people who buy decorations and then only get around to putting them up on the 30th what a waste of excitement. I’ve played around with some make up on Friday and think I’ll be going as a Calavera Catrina aka a Day of The Dead Skeleton.

Its a Saturday night and I’ve spend the afternoon watching the Rugby, I’m slightly jealous Jamie got to see the South Africans play in Newcastle this evening and I’m kind of shocked there was such a gap between the scoring considering we’ve been doing so well recently but well done anyway Scotland and now there’s so many Christmas movies already showing on TV, except the Polar Express I only like the happy ones.

Although I do want to get into the gym and get back into getting fit for Christmas but there’s more rugby on tomorrow GO TONGA and YAY COME ON ITALY, lets be real.. I will probably be sat on the sofa from 2 o’clock with snacks.

I’m Backing Blue, Are You?

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A Rare Occasion

So today its Tuesday 29th of September, and a few days into autumn, I’m in Edinburgh and the temperature was what?! TWENTY DEGREES?! Yes, 20°C, I’m pretty sure it didn’t even get that hot during the summer and it was so lovely!

Started my day with snuggles, kisses and food, does it get much better than that?! … I don’t think so

Although I didn’t go to college this morning to have a bit of a ‘bae day’ with Jamie since I hadn’t seen him in what felt like agessss (Okay it was actually only 7 days but you know, I miss him like the minute he leaves my side) we did try and be productive! Ready for the day we headed out to visit my gran, walked Jock the cutest boarder terrier pup in all the land and headed to Lucas our usual stop for nachos. I got round to returning and exchanging a few items at Nike and spent the evening apply to jobs – sigh. Although I do have an interview tomorrow morning. How awful are interviews though, like What do you wear? What do you say? How much make up is acceptable? Urrggghhhhh Tommorrow, Wednesday, 3rd day of the week and already another assessment at college in the afternoon again. Bleeeeeh

When the sun shines everyone’s happier, the tunes on the radio are lighter and well the days are just greater. You feel less stressed about everything you need to do because you can’t waste a minute indoors knowing you live in Scotland and any second the hail stones could start. The sun even makes feel fitter as weird as that sounds(?)

Anyways, lets hope the rest of the week stays this good.

I Miss Turkey 🌴🌞🍹

Growing up with only one season in Abu Dhabi of course I love the autumnal weather that’s coming out to play in Scotland right now but let’s be real its pretty much scarf and boots weather all year round in Edinburgh and…

I’m kind of missing the sea, sunsets and cocktails of my summer get away!

So June 6th, Jamie and I drove through to Glasgow airport in pretty much torrential rain to jet off for 8 days of Turkish sunshine. Neither of us had been to Turkey before and so I guess didn’t really know what to expect, it was also our first time being together consecutively for so many nights – I mean we had been up north for a few nights in February and were in Dublin for a few nights in May but honestly, 8 days with one person all day and all night did scare me a little.

We stayed in a beautiful little village called Ölüdeniz on the south west cost and loved it! The hotel wasn’t the fanciest or the busiest but the location was great, we were just a 2 minute walk from the shops – as many genuine fake LV hang bags you could want and a 2 minute walk to the beach which we didn’t actually know until we arrived is one of the best places in the world to paraglide.

We managed to try a Turkish bath, visit some of the surrounding towns, the waterpark and even fitted in some scuba diving.

I miss lying by the pool with my Ölüdeniz Breeze cocktail, Jamie teaching me card games & tricks and just soaking up the sun, unfortunately the week seemed to fly by 😦 to make things worse I don’t think Scotland saw the sun at all from the date we got home.

forever snapchatting

forever snapchatting

kisses in the sunset, in the middle of nowhere, we're cute

kisses in the sunset, in the middle of nowhere, we’re cute

post dive

post dive

Pre-tan, Hot Dogs or Legs?

Pre-tan, Hot Dogs or Legs?

we spent our last night in Fethiye

we spent our last night in Fethiye

exploring on our first night

exploring on our first night

being in the middle of the sea makes you realise how much there is to actually explore

being in the middle of the sea makes you realise how much there is to actually explore

pretty much sums us up

pretty much sums us up

Can’t wait for our next planned trip,

– forever reminiscing about the smiles

Monday Travel Memory / Kenya

This weeks memory is going back to the summer of 2009 when my family and I travelled to Kenya for 10 nights – we hired a van and had a driver, Anthony, take us from reserve to reserve starting in Nairobi where we spent our first night at Giraffe Manor.

If you get the chance to visit this part of the world, Giraffe Manor must be on your list of places to visit! – As soon as you drive in, its very old school elegance and the staff were super friendly and accommodating. We were taken back with how up, close and personal we were able to get to the wild animals. We even shared our breakfast in the main house with the giraffes (How cool is that?!).

So after that first night, the fun really began!

We got back in our white mini van and took a – what seemed like days worth of -drive[ing] to start our safari vacation. Our first reserve was  Sweetwaters Serena Camp and wow – driving in was like being on set of a real life Lion King set! Our accommodation was luxury tree houses. When walking from dinner to our tree house we walked past the open waterhole, cautiously as the camp is home to all wildlife – Lions/Zebras/Rhinos.. but it was so incredible to watch the animals so undisturbed. The reserve also has the only chimpanzee sanctuary in the country and we visited it – only to find one adopted from home, Abu Dhabi.

Our first safari trip out was the next morning, and it was unreal.

Sweetwaters is a private game conservancy  and home the biggest black rhino sanctuary in East Africa, we saw plenty of zebras, giraffes, bores, and then… one Black Rhino. Yes these animals are in some form of captivity but they are still wild, so our driver made it very clear from the start that we weren’t to leave the vehicle because anything could happen but my mom being the person she is doesn’t take no as an answer very lightly so when she asked to stop so we could get out and get near it, we did. We didn’t just get out.. we approached it, and stroked it like we would our dog. It was so rough but skinny and it made a few grunts but remained so calm.

 

Post lunch and a swim we were keen to head back out..

 

Day four was pretty much just another day in the van travelling to our next location, Keekorok Lodge – its located in the Maasai Mara National Reserve so on the way there we stopped at a Maasai Mara camp and it was quite eye opening to see how these people are livening/how they cook/to see that instead of going to a super market and stocking up on sodas and water they had pumps in the ground.

The resort is beautiful. We stayed in bungalows which over looked the grounds and legit like ten thousand monkeys! My brother and I were just chilling watching the TV and had the porch doors open not thinking anything of it when all of a sudden our room was filled with monkeys and man, these animals are intelligent – they were in our bags taking our sweets, a  handful sat on our bed with us and some sat at the glass doors pulling faces at ones outside while we ran to the bathroom to hide – haha
Our evening ended here with a horse ride(of which we had to wear the dorkiest helmets!)

 

Day five, we woke up covered in mosquito bites!

My dad and I got up early and  safari while Craig and my mum sat by the pool.

Following a late check out we headed to  venue #4 – Ilkeliani Camp, this time we didn’t have too far to drive as we stayed in the Maasai Mara area. We stayed here for two nights, in tents.. tents in the wild.. so cool! The photos below are from the afternoon/evening safari drive on our first afternoon at Ilekliani.

 

Very early hot air balloon ride, followed by a Champagne breakfast anyone?!

 

 

So because I feel like I’m dragging on a bit, I think I’m going to end it here..

 

Tuesday Travel Tips / 2

This time next week Jamie and I will have checked into our hotel and hopefully had a wonder around and a bite to eat in Berlin, I’m quite excited to explore a city with some much history and art. (Think of all the cool, edgy Instagram photos I’ll be uploading!?) Carrying on from last weeks tips on how to  find a good flight deal this week I would help myself with a list of this I need to do with only 6 days to spare! –  I’ll probably try and get these all done today or tomorrow so we aren’t rushing around come Monday night.

  • In order to start packing or at least think about what I’ll take I always think its a good idea to check the weather forecast of where you’re traveling to – check the current weather and an average prediction.
  • Still on the subject or packing, is there anything you don’t have that you’ll need to buy before hand – Toiletries? Batteries? Something to read? A selfie stick? There are plenty of check lists available online to print of it you’re needing a little bit of helping thinking about what could be useful, especially on Pinterest.
  • Now whether you are just taking hand luggage or you are checking in a suitcase make sure your bags are acceptable for travel because imagine the nightmare it would be if they weren’t suitable and you had a flight/train to catch in 10 hours!
  • This next tip isn’t really required with technology but I do think its best to print our hotel & flight reservations and if you have booked some kind of excursion for while you are away I would print that information out too, just in case your phone runs out of charge or it gets lost.
  • Organise travel insurance! If you are a UK citizen you can apply for a EHIC card, this provides you with free medical care across Europe – it’s free so why not?
  • Withdrawing money from an ATM at your arrival destination is fine if you are really running low  but I highly recommend shopping about for good exchange rates before you go – the exchange rate banks give you abroad are more often than not a lot lower than you could get else where.
  • Talking about banks, notify them you are traveling- either by going into a branch or by phone. Our last night in Turkey we were down to our last 20 Turkish Lira and because we hadn’t informed our banks we were traveling our cards got blocked – so not great!!

 

I think that’s all my tips for this week, if you have any you think I might have left out or have anything you think needs added please let me know!

 

 

 

Monday Travel Memory / Dublin

Feeling very lucky and privileged to have travelled to so many places around the globe in my 20 years this post is the first of (hopefully lots, if I keep it up!) travel memories – #MondayTravelMemory

So first city of the series, Dublin..

May 7th 2015, Jamie and I caught an early morning Ryanair flight to Dublin from Edinburgh for a fun few days filled with leprechauns, beer and rugby – oh wait and lots of rain! As soon as we sat in our seats and the seatbelt sign was turned on Jamie was asleep so I was left to listening to music and playing Candy Crush and you’d be surprised by how addicted I am to it still, all the King games seem to be just as addictive as the last.

Once landed we were a little unorganised (Or rather Jamie was as  he had arranged the trip) and weren’t to sure where our hotel was located let alone the best way to get to it, but at the arrivals terminal we managed to buy 72-hour travel passes called Leap Card, (These can be purchased for a different time variations and for different cities in Ireland). Anyways so we got the airport bus into the city centre and then I want to say the #96 to the Travelodge at Phoenix Park and because we were too early to check into the room we stored our bags and hopped back on the bus to O’Connell Street.

I love just wondering around a new city and soaking it all up, exploring all the side street shops and cafes. We picked up a map from the hotel reception and tracked down the Leprechaun Museum which was ace! I did however think it would be a bit more hands on but it was a walked guide of story telling and a room packed with furniture 3x bigger than regular human furniture to give you the feeling of what it would be like to be a leprechaun. We spent a good hour(hour and a half) in there so afterwards it was food time – now don’t judge us, we ended up in…. Burger King once we’d fuelled up we walked along The River Liffey and enjoyed the ‘cute-ness’ of the city centre and the weather.

Waking up on the Friday the weather had completely changed but it was actually our busiest day. We headed out the hotel just before lunch time and wondered down to Temple Bar, due to the heavy rain most of the pubs were packed and we could find anywhere to sit down and eat in an ‘Irish’ establishment but we did come across a lovely Mexican restaurant in Temple Bar which did a great priced 2- course lunch menu and it was super yummy!

Next on the days agenda… The Guinness Factory – now this was the only thing Jamie wanted to do in while in Dublin and to be honest I wasn’t expecting a whole lot from it but wow. I totally recommend it! Architecturally the building is seven floors high and each represents a completely different aspect the brand, and the seventh floor holds the Gravity Bar which equals panorama views of Dublin. We thought we’d maybe spend 1 & 1/2 – 2 hours tops in the Guinness Storehouse  where in actual fact we spend more like 4 & 1/2 hours so in hind sight good job we picked the rainiest day to enjoy it. We bussed it back to O’Connell Street, picked up a few snacks and drinks to keep us going and popped into Penny’s for a fresh- dry pair of socks, then headed out to the Leinster Rugby grounds. Through out the game the weather seemed to get more wet and more dull and more cold 😦

Our final day was chilled, we checked out and found a tourist information shop along the riverside where we could hold our bags and we come lunch time we came across a lovely ‘farmers’ market near Temple Bar and then went into a café near by for brunch. We sat a bench next to the Ha’penny Bridge for a while in the sun before doing some touristy shopping and then having to head back to the airport.

 

 

 

 

Tuesday Travel Tips / 1

I have a few trips planned for 2016 – Germany, The UAE and (hopefully Czech Republic) – so I figured I’d start doing weekly tips on the best ways to travel/to booking stays/organise tips to help myself and maybe even help someone else?

So lets start off with a few key tips..

Best Way to Book Your Flight

  •  Book early

Most studies suggest the best time to book a flight is 6-8 weeks before you travel however I definitely think the early you can start planning a trip and looking into buying flights the better. Every now and then you might be lucky enough to see a cheap flight offer 8 months before you want to travel, so when this happens I’d say snap it up while you can – it also gives you a little longer to save up for the all the other things (accommodation/attractions/car hire)!

  • Delete your browsing history

This is a must! When you search priced of flights/hotel rooms, think about if a few days and go back the price has risen – your searches are stored in the computers history so be sure to clear it after each search to avoid paying extra unnecessarily.

  •  Check for airline sales

January is a good month to bag a bargain with most things, flights included – you can sign up to receive updates from airlines and some flight comparison sites. Also many airline has reward systems so sign up for theses for free and could help you upgrade or even go towards the cost of a ticket.

  • It’s best to be flexible

Being flexible with dates you can travel on enables you to get a better deal – who doesn’t want that?! The getting there part of the trip is usually the most expensive so organise this first.

  • Got a Tuesday or Wednesday free?

Travelling on either Tuesday or Wednesday have been recorded the cheapest days to fly, accommodation is usually cheaper midweek too.

  •  Arrive in the morning

To me the flight time doesn’t really matter all that much, in fact I actually prefer night flights – you say bye to your departure city at night  and when you reach the arrival city you have the whole day ahead (obviously depending if you’re flying East or West).  Night flights are usually cheaper too, you wont save £100s but its up to you to decide if you can risk a nights sleep due to a crying baby or if you’re happy to up your caffeine intake to keep you awake.

 

 

 

Just One of Those Days

So basically my sleeping pattern is a mess – I’m up all night and struggle to get out of bed before noon most days, sometimes it’s just like urgh what’s the point of waking up if I haven’t got anything planned/anything to get done?

I currently feel like I’ve isolated myself to the point of no return. I can feel myself even shutting Jamie out every now and then, I shut my parents out all the time but it’s like my mum has a some kind of sixth sense and she just knows when something is up.

So what did she do today, she called.
So what did I do? Ignored it. Why?

I suppose, because even though I once was able to hide everything from her, she knows how I’m feeling now she knows the signs to hear for or look for?

We skyped and chatted about her day, about going out to Dubai in March, about Craig, about Jamie and then just as I thought we were saying goodbyes I hear How are you really doing in yourself? And all of a sudden there’s that awful feeling in my throat that stops me speaking and the question causes my eyes to water. I’m fine, okay talk to you later. Bye.
– closes the laptop –

You’d have thought by now, 6 years later/5 therapist later/a stronger relationship with my family I’d be able to say I’m maybe not 100% okay, that I feel lost and alone a lot of the time. I should probably be able to admit asking for support isn’t a sign of weakness and that weakness isn’t failure but I can’t, I suppose it doesn’t matter how many times you’re told something you need to feel it or experience it for yourself?

Urrrgh

Currently rocking out to some very old school Taylor Swift and Colbie Caillat, scrolling through Tumblr and Pinterest.

 

 

Love will always be nearby

Four Months On,

Well so much for trying to write about my day, on a daily basis… Four months on and I suppose a lot has changed!

– Ups and Downs / Positives and Negatives –

So Halloween came and went, I got a job and then boom it was December already and out of no where Jamie and I had moved in together, December 21st to be exact. The house still needs work done to it before it’ll be ‘home’ and its kind of lonely just the two of us since it feels like most of the time I’m home when Jamie is at work so I’m spending the majority of that time alone getting super into Silent Witness and Tattoo Fixers! It was kind of sad/weird spending Christmas without any of my family for the first time – but hey that’s growing up, right?!

The week before Christmas we lost a very special woman in our family, my grandmother and although we knew it was coming we almost weren’t expecting it because she’d fought the big C for so long and every time it looked bad she still managed to pull through. Death, being a part of life and inescapable, we have to accept that when our time comes there isn’t much any of us can to do except be thankful for the time we have had. The funeral was my first and even though we were gathered to say goodbye it was somewhat bittersweet as all of the family and her friends were together at once, something which never happens and it was nice.

Anywaysssss…  On a happier note – 2016 has arrived!

We welcomed January, under a sky of fireworks and obviously more than a few drinks. Isn’t new years all about the best tunes, alcohol on tap and that twelve o’clock kiss?!

To be honest, I can’t believe it is already a few days into February! Jamie and I celebrated our 2nd birthday on Sunday, this weekend is the start of Six Nations – WOO GO SCOTLAND! and Feb 14th the next weekend.  (woooah) (please slow down)

The past month has just flown by and I’ve definitely felt over whelmed at times, needed to cry it all out and just have cuddles but I really need to start having a little more faith in the world. I need to stop isolating myself from people and events when I feel like things are going a little bit wrong. And TAAALLKKKKK. Its so hard though sometimes – you know when you just feel like no one gets it? Or you feel like you’re failing because you need help coping?

Jamie and I are still adjusting to each others habits, we haven’t quite mastered having dinner (or as he calls it tea, which is just weird) together at a normal time but we have got to grips with agreeing on TV programmes – priorities.

 

mmm, crème eggs are back

 

 

It’s Official!

So…

Today is Wednesday 23rd September 2015 and… the first day of autumn. 🍂🍁☕

What does that mean? Well if, like me, you live in a city like Edinburgh and can experience 4 seasons a day, all year, the typical scarf-gillet-boots combo isn’t anything to get too excited about, however the autumn Starbucks drinks collection is out (mmmm..) I can’t be the only one who gets super happy over daft things like how cute the new to-go cups are!

Oh my gosh autumn also means the scents in the shops are to die for and when you love candles as much as I do, your home begins to smell like yummy, home made, pumpkin spiced, cinnamon treats you want to eat.

When I think autumn though, I think American ‘fall’ related movies like Hocus Pocus, Twitches and of course Casper, the  pinky/orangey coloured leaves, the oh so Disney homecoming dance and the childish spookiness which means it’s okay to start thinking halloweeeeeen
I’m actually quite excited for the 31st this year, its my flat mates birthday a couple days before so we’re throwing a party and planning to go completely over board with the decorations! 👻👹

On a totally different wave length and absolutely unrelated though… It’s currently the Rugby World Cup 2015 and Scotland played Japan this afternoon at Kingsholm and wow what a game, SCOTLAND WON!!!!! (45-10)
To be honest after Japan’s win (34-32) against South Africa on Saturday I wasn’t really sure what the outcome would be. Jamie and his dad are down south watching the games for the next week and I’m so jealous that they got to soak up todays atmosphere first hand.

Anyways,

– happy hump day