monthly favourites lifestyle blogger

September Favourites!

September favourites, already? Yep, we’re now in the last quarter of the year! No, I don’t know how it happened either. September was a funny old month, there were some excellent parts, and some not so excellent. That said, let’s get cracking with my September favourites.

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Disney

Just in case you missed it, I got to go to Disneyland in September. DISNEY LAND. I had the best time with my Mum and my sister and I won’t gush too much here – so here’s a part 1 AND part 2. You are welcome!

Books 

I didn’t get too much reading done in September but some of them I really did enjoy. I managed to finish an early release copy of Jodi Picoult’s A Spark of Ligh (review to come) about a shooting in a women’s health centre. Different to her other novels in the way it was written, but a good read.

I also read Ask Me His Name, which is an important and heartbreaking read about a mother who doesn’t get to bring her son home after his death at 3 days old. My final favourite for the month is Disconnected, a breathtaking collection of short stories and poems. This was amazing and I can’t wait to share my review with you.!

Things to do

I went out a fair bit this month, I went out with some friends for my birthday (absolutely in love with that skirt!). I also met up with my friend Lucy, the first time we’ve hung out without any little ones in 5 years! And last, but not least, I saw the incredible Sarah Millican at one of our local theatres. My face hurt at the end because I was laughing so hard.

Harry Potter 

I spent most of this month building some kind of Lego or other. As I type, Ali has ordered me the Great Hall set for me to carry on with for his final few weeks of the tour. I also picked up this adorable candle from Primark, I wish I had smell-o-vision because it’s so gorgeous.

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Birthday! 

I spent my birthday wrapped up in blankets with the worst cold ever. So, not exactly how I planned it. I did get some absolutely lovely presents. They’re all really grown up as you can see.

General 

And just a few little things that I really loved. Walking in the Autumn sunshine with my lovely Lottie. Also, the cheeky tub of Ben and Jerry’s because I haven’t had any in SO LONG and it was on sale. Just a reminder if you want the Ice Cream, eat the damn stuff because life is too short.

Posts

You Matter  – A post for suicide awareness

18 Good Things That Happened At 23 – Looking back at 23!

Book Review: Tyler Johnson Was Here

10 Reasons Autumn Is My Favourite Season

What were your favourites in September? Let me know in the comments below!

Disneyland Part 2

Disneyland Paris – Part 2

As promised, you don’t just get 1 blog on Disneyland Paris, you get 2! Yay!!! If you haven’t read yesterday’s post on part 1 it’s a cracker so many sure to go and check that out. We were in Paris for 4 days in total, on to Part 2!

Day 3 

For our 3rd day, we went back to Disneyland to finish up on some rides (getting there early and heading straight to them was brilliant). We walked on to the Tea Cups without queueing, quickly got on to Dumbo and a few others. We were ON IT. They also made me go on It’s A Small World…

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After spending the morning in Disneyland we’d decided to do some shopping then go back to the hotel to pack (Mum and Sums) and nap (me).

After grabbing some food, back to the park for Fireworks!! Now, you all know there is NOTHING better than Disney Fireworks.

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Day 4 

Our final day was definitely interesting. After dropping our bags we headed back to the Studios. The aim? Get on the Turtle ride, get on the Toy Story rides. And we managed! Just. It was very hot and very busy. One of the rides broke down, all fun and games.

The rest of the day was a mix of Disneyland, shopping and sitting and waiting for our (very delayed train.

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The trip was so much fun and I cannot even begin to express how grateful I am that my Mum took us both and treated us. I don’t get to spend time alone with my Mum and Sister very often and it was a lovely break. Am I going back to Disney? Of course. It’s 100% made me want to save up and go to Orlando too!

I will say though, this is how I’m currently feeling – in need of a good sleep!

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Disneyland Part 1

Disneyland Paris – Part 1

It happened! I went back to Disneyland Paris for the first time since 1999. Yep. The last time I went to Disneyland I was 5 years old and things have changed a little bit! This time I went with my Mum and sister and OH MY GOD DISNEY. So, because there is so much to cover so as requested on Twitter I’ve split it into 2 posts. So get ready, here we gooooooo!

 

Day 1 

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I had a 4.00am alarm. 4am. To get a lift to the station (thanks Dad!) in London. From there, things got a little manic we got there when we were told but hardly had time to get a cup of tea before rushing off.

We then took a train to Lille, where we changed. Then, after an hours wait, we got onto another train (this time a double decker…apparently that’s a thing?) to get to Disney. The station is right next to the Park, thankfully and we’d already booked for our bags to be taken to the hotel.

By the time we’d arrived we’d been awake for a damn long time, I’d had limited caffeine and was starting to flag. So, we took a look around the shops before taking a peek at Hollywood Studios, which I’d never been to in Paris! We even went in the Slinky Dog ride but, we were absolutely exhausted so went to our hotel to finally check in.

We stayed at the Newport Bay Club which was BEAUTIFUL! I mean c’mon look at that bed. The whole hotel was sea themed, we ever had little porthole designs with the characters in them in our room. The end of day 1 was an early one, with dinner in the hotel. The food was good with options but the best part were the desserts. Tiny, perfect desserts. I went to bed with a happy tummy indeed.

 

Day 2

Our second day had a really early start but it was okay because we were off to character breakfast in the park! My Mum booked this as a treat for my sister and I. It was so worth it. We met 6 characters and while I still wish I’d seen Minnie Mouse, Donald and Goofy too we had fun! Here are some pictures of me and my sister that Mum took during the breakfast. And yes, yes I am wearing rainbow ears.

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The rest of the day was full Disneyland! We all wore matching shirts and matching ears because, you know, my Mum is adorable like that. So after you’ve just eaten breakfast what’s the first thing you do? Go on Buzz Lightyear shootout of course. I LOVE this ride. Next up I decided I’d give Hyperspace Mountain a go. Stupid me. I didn’t realise it was in the dark, nor that it went upside down. I did it but I was slightly traumatised after.

Through the day we took pictures in front of the castle (obvs), sheltered from the pouring rain before having to shade ourselves later in the day because it was boiling. We went on rides like Thunder Mountain Railroad, Peter Pan and Pinnochio – thank god for access fast passes!  Mum also treated us to so many snacks and treats…I kinda forgot how much she likes to feed us.

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I met my fave, Woody. I LOVE Toy Story and he was just wondering around and so we had to get pictures (which Mum didn’t want to be in because apparently, his head is too big?!) We also waited and watched the parade which was super fun. I haven’t watched a parade in SO LONG. And it really, really is magic and was worth the hour and a half we spent reserving our spaces.

And that’s just the first part of the trip!! Make sure to pop back tomorrow for the second half and even more Disney magic! But, before you go – who’s your favourite Disney character? Let me know in the comments below!

August Favourites!

Let’s jump right in and see what I’ve been loving in August!

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Books 

This month it’s been quite a slow reading month I just really couldn’t get into it. The silver lining though is that I’ve loved the books I have read. I finally got my copy of Our Super American Adventure by Sarah Graley which is absolutely awesome, I’ve met Sarah before and love her artwork and stories about her relationship. I also finished what I think is going to be one of my top books this year, My Shitty Twenties by Emily Morris, an honest account of being a single mother in your twenties and still being badass, you can read my review here. I also kept seeing the Andrew Morton book Diana Her True Story and decided to download it on Audible it’s a tough book and I did think it was interesting but incredibly sad on the 20th anniversary of the princess’s death. And finally Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls is just amazing, meant for children but should be read by EVERYONE! My gushing review is here.

 

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Watching 

Is there anything else to talk about this month? Of course, there’s not. Game of Thrones is over for another season and this one was everything I hoped it would be. I’m not going to post spoilers, because that just not cool. All I’ll say is the following for people who have watched the finale, they deserved that and oh lordy what a beautiful sight. Now I have to wait for the next season…my Dad has already tagged me in a countdown timer.

 

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Fashion and Beauty

I did a whooooole post about my little haul this month over here. So head over for all the info you need to know!

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Brighton Pride

I went to my first ever Pride and I can honestly say it was the best party I’ve ever been to. It was fun and flamboyant and there was glitter everywhere! I got to sit in a giant deck chair, dance in an 80s disco and I ended up sponsoring a dog…yep (wine may have been involved). I wrote a whole post about 7 reasons you should go next year!

General

This month started off on a good note with a trip to Pizza Express with my ‘spec squad’, that’s me, Abbie and Sarah to celebrate our new little group. It’s been a month of spending time with people I love. Ali went to Brighton and Scotland this month for work, and bought me home Charlie the Highland Cow from the latter, he’s adorable (the cow I mean, although Ali’s ok I suppose). It’s also had milestones with my little sister getting into college! I also went to see 80s super popstars Bros at the O2 in London, which was actually a brilliant laugh with my Mum, sister and mum’s best friend. I also may have gotten a new cauldron mug from the new Primark collection…maybe. And last but not least I’ve been spending as much time as possible with Ali, including on our 9 year anniversary, before he heads off on tour tomorrow!!

 

My favourite posts 

Feminist Friday with …. Jess Willby 

A new month, a new woman 

Nine years, new adventures 

 

What have your favourites been this month? Let me know in the comments below!

Relaxation, Sunshine and Cocktails – Welcome to Majorca

Hello, hello, hello!

On Saturday I got back from a wonderful week long stay in Alcudia, Majorca. Ali and I booked this about a year ago and seeing as we hadn’t had a holiday since 2015 (!!), so it was well deserved and well needed. We booked our holiday through TUI (Thomson) to fly from London to Palma, staying at the Platja D’Or hotel in Alcudia.

Now, this might not be your typical hotel for a twenty-something couple, as it was generally an older crowd (by about 25 years) BUT it’s exactly the kind of holiday we wanted, a chilled out all inclusive with a nice pool and a beach. We could see the beach from our room, being hotel guests meant we had a cut through to the beach itsself. We were also able to eat 3 top class meals a day, although I have to admit my favourite part was the desert, come to mama. Each night it was something different and you could watch as the chefs cooked your food, or you could simply pick something up from the buffet.

The hotel itself was pretty far out. We could walk for about 30 minutes before we were in the main area for hotels and shops a 15-minute bus ride to old Alcudia and 1 hour away from Palma. In that respect, it wasn’t the easiest place to explore if you didn’t want to have to travel, but it is wonderful for some peace and quiet.

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We did do a little bit of exploring on our travels to the main cities near us. First off was Old Alcudia (on the left). This was really strange because there are houses, shops and restaurants in the middle of Arabic ruins which you can simply walk on and look for miles out at the beautiful scenery. Around the back of these, there were also  Roman ruins, although we couldn’t go through at that time. It was incredible to walk through and just see these huge walls that protected the city and to stand at the top was magnificent.

Later in the week we also took a trip into Palma, the main city. We were able to have a guided tour of the Cathedral before having free time to explore. Ali and I decided to hit up the Hard Rock Cafe and tick another location off of our list. It was exactly the right mix of beauty and culture in the Cathedral (definitely worth a visit) and fun for us in Hard Rock. That said, it was so hot the day we went if you decide to go then make sure you take a LOT of water with you, I suffered from quite a headache after!

The other days were mainly spent with Ali and I visiting the beach or the pool and just spending time together before he has an incredibly busy summer. All in all, it was the relaxing break that I needed before starting my new job (more on that later!). Where are you all off to this summer? Let me know in the comments below!

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Sunday Seven: Tips for Flying Alone!

Last week I took my first flight alone from Palma, Majorca to London Gatwick. I had an amazing holiday (although more on that tomorrow) but on the last day I had a knot in my stomach for the afternoon. I’ve never had to fly on my own and although I’ve flow so, so many times the thought of going it alone was really nerve wracking. That said, once I’d done it I really enjoyed it and feel like I’ve opened so many more doors for myself. So, what are my tips for flying alone?

Make sure you are at the airport nice and early 

There’s nothing that stresses you out more than being late, you may be waiting around but at least you’ll be relaxed and ready to fly.

Tell family or friends important details 

Let people know what’s going on, especially when you’re travelling alone. That way other people know that you’re safe too.

If you need any assistance, book it in advance 

I’ve needed assistance in the past and it’s always fine if you book in advance. When you’re at the airport it can take longer or you might not be able to get it at the last minute.

Have a good playlist 

I don’t like landing and take off when I have to listen to the engines, this time I plugged in my headphones and had pumping music and it was awesome! Totally difference experience, make sure you’re on Airplane mode though!

Take something to do on the flight 

A book, a notebook, tablet something to keep you entertained because everyone knows that plane journeys can be so boring.

Make this your time, away from distractions 

The great thing is that there’s no internet (well not on any flight I’ve ever been on), you can take some time for yourself to just think or sleep, sleeps good.

Enjoy the views! 

I flew at 2 in the morning, seeing all the lights of the towns and cities we flew over was beautiful.

 

What are your tips for flying alone? Let me know in the comments below!

Sunday Seven: Places you should visit!

Is it summer time yet? No? I can hear the collective groan as so many of us have to wait for the summer to roll around so we can go away and have a little break. I’m very lucky that my family liked to travel when I was growing up, I’ve seen some beautiful countries and hope to add to the ever growing list. This week I wanted to share with you seven places I loved and that you should visit!

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Paphos, Cyprus 

I’ve been to Cyprus a few times with my family and I absolutely love it. We’ve been going since I was quite young and my last visit was just before I started uni. We’ve stayed at the same hotel each time, but the town itself is constantly changing. There’s also a great waterpark, great excursions you can do and a lot of history around. One day I really want to take Ali and show him one of my favourite holiday destinations.

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Sorrento, Italy 

Ali and I first went away together with his family all the way back in 2009 to Sorrento. In the picture above (excusing my awful choice in ‘fashion’) we are standing at the top of Mount Vesuvius. We’d spent the day walking around Pompeii and looking at the history of it. Aside from that Sorrento is very tourist friendly, which means it can get busy but it’s also easy to get around. Also, the food? To die for, I loved it. You can also go over to the Island of Capri which oozes glamour. I want to go to different areas in Italy but Sorrento was a good place to start.

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London, UK 

I’ve been in love with London for as long as I can remember. I was taken to Oxford Street with my Mum and Nanna more times than I can count. London to me means excitement, it’s where I see shows, meet friends, go to events, explore the rich history of a wonderful city. London will always be special to me and I couldn’t just say one place, I love it all!

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Amsterdam

I went to Amsterdam just before my 21st birthday. While we stayed closer to the Red Light District, it was on the last day we found the real beauty of Amsterdam in Vondelpark, if I were to stay again I would definitely pay the extra to stay near the park, also their Hard Rock Cafe is incredible.

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Greece

I’ve been to Greece a lot. The first holiday I  went on with my parents was to the island of Crete, we went time and time again and I fell in love with it. I wanted to use a picture from then but couldn’t find any in digital. Fast forward about 18 years and I’d gone back to Greece, this time to Athens with Ali  for a week long class, and looked at the history of one of the greatest civilizations to have ever lived. Oh and for an Ouzo or two.

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Orlando, Florida 

Anyone who knows me, knows Florida was going to be on this list. My parents have taken me to Florida at least 3 if not 4 times. I was very lucky. I like going and acting like a kid, going to Disney, Universal, shopping in the outlet malls. I can’t see myself going for a while but damn right I’m going back.

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Harry Potter Studio Tour – Watford 

A must for ANY potterhead or anyone who just liked the films. Seeing everything up close, admiring the artistry and the detail on even the smallest things. I need to go again at some point, it’s only been a few years since I went but it’s already changed so much from pictures. It really is a must.

What are some of your favourite places to visit? Let me know in the comments below!