#24HourBlogWritingChallenge No.1

Blog Challenge

Inspired from my last post linked to Cara’s 24 Hour Song Writing Challenge, I thought I’d start a #24HourBlogWritingChallenge of my own. It’s a weird one right now as I’m in the writing mood, but what do I write about?

I had lots of fab topics sent over on what I could write about. A weekly training/food plan. What new recipes I’ve been using. Women in cycling. However, it was a late entry that I decided to take the plunge and decide to write about.

What would 15 year old Lucy say about where you are now?

I mean 15 year old Lucy wouldn’t have predicted a pandemic. She might have been shocked about where I am now, but at all the other things I’ve got going on.

So I’ve decided to write a letter from 15 year old Lucy after I’ve told her all about what I’m doing at the age of 23…

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Dear 23 year old me,

Thanks for your letter about what you’re up to right now. It makes battling through the dilemmas of high school that little bit easier. I mean, my room’s filled with an Amazon rainforest’s worth of revision notes. I’m staring at them day-in, day-out hoping just some of them stick in my brain. I spend most of my time walking Jenson, but everyone’s freaking out about what dress they’re going to wear for prom. I’ve already got mine. I picked it up in an afternoon shopping in Debenhams with Mum. It was the first dress I picked up. And I obviously wanted nude shoes like Kate wore for the big Royal Wedding. I suppose spending all my weekends photographing weddings, I don’t see prom as that big of a deal. 

It’s more the exams that are filling my brain if I’m honest. Thanks to seeing Leena Gade on the pit wall in Le Mans I’m suddenly paying attention in Maths, but she must have found it difficult to understand at some point right? Last minute as ever I’ve just put my application in for A-Levels. Maths, Physics and Business Studies, which certainly took my Maths teacher by surprise. I mean it took me by surprise a little, but how would I get onto a Mechanical Engineering Degree without them? I get I needn’t put so much pressure on those grades now. They certainly helped you get a good job though right? Working where Grandpa use to work? Just look after your knees climbing through all those aircraft wings.

It feels weird hearing that I won’t end up at University, but oh my gosh your dog is the cutest. Who made it legal to breed dogs with ears so insanely fluffy. And house and boyfriend too? I can’t believe I’ve nearly bumped into him so many times. At the golf club. Nearly joining Wrexham Road Club. Him selling James a bike before we’d even met. I mean that kind of storyline would give most of the storylines on Disney Channel a run for their money, no?

I’m not quite sure how you managed to convince yourself spending so much on a downhill bike would be ok though. Were the driving lessons really that bad? Thank god I pass eventually! Me, racing too. Racing downhill. That sounds like some crazy stuff. Sounds like you made some good friends along the way too. 

I’m not quite sure how I feel about eventually riding and racing road bikes. Sounds as chaotic as the downhill. I guess I was always going to go back to cycling eventually. It’s always the sport I go back to in the end, whether I race or not. I mean, that cycling trip to Belgium sounds incredible. I’ll finally get to see Spa after hearing about it so much off James. 

The London Marathon sounds tough. I know I don’t mind the 1500m around the Daisy Field at school, but 26.2 miles running. My knees hurt already. I can’t wait to hold that gold medal with the red ribbon for the first time though.

At least I needn’t worry about everything as much, despite a topsy turvy turn of events it all works out eventually.

15-year old Lucy x

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It’s funny how when you’re young you think life can only turn out one way. Some things turn out how you want to, like finally getting to see the Spa Six Hours race. Other things turn out very different, like not going to University, but my A-Level grade still helped me get the job I’m in now. So all the hard work didn’t completely go to waste. They might even help me progress in the future.

I imagine there’s a lot of 15/16 year olds out there right now wondering what the hell they’re going to do now they’re not sitting their GCSE’s. Some might be lucky and have good predicted grades. Others may be worrying beyond belief because they were hoping to bump their grades up when it really mattered on exam day. The truth is, I thought exactly the same. Everything in the moment feels like the end of the world. I went from being a good student to just having random jobs for a few years. I worked in cafe’s and bike shops. They weren’t where I thought I’d be at 17/18, but I’m glad I took a year or two to decide what on earth I wanted to do with my life.

Right now, some might say I’ve got my sh*t together. Boyfriend. Dog. House. Family. But the truth is I don’t think you ever really know what you’re going to do with your life. You just take it day by day and see what takes your fancy.

If there’s opportunities, take them.

If it’s what you want to do, but other people aren’t so keen on the idea, just get on with it.

If you can pay the bills and feed yourself, you’re doing alright.

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(Thanks to Ryan for being patient and taking the photos aha)

If you want to give the #24HourBlogWritingChallenge ago, I’d love it if you tagged me in yours so I can give them a read!

Following New Paths

TulipWaking up with a bit more ‘go’ in me this morning, the thought of doing a 2 hour session on my Wattbike seemed like a good idea. I had a bad case of cabin fever yesterday and I just couldn’t get it out of my system. It was definitely an occasion for Lucy to disappear into Wales and sprint up some hills, but I can’t do that right now so we adapt don’t we.

It’s a weird scenario right now where I crave human interaction, but when I go out I’m avoiding people at all costs. It’s definitely made me realise how much I thrive on being able to go outside, which luckily right now is what the daily dog walk is allowing.

And that is where this blog post has come from I guess. Don’t worry the Elfyn Antics will resume shortly…

On my regular scrolling through Insta Stories to see what everyones doing to occupy themselves, Cara Hammond’s Instagram popped up. A female artist from my hometown who’s living it large in London. Cara’s live sessions on Instagram are a good way to spend Wednesday lunchtimes at the moment and this week she was doing a 24 hour song writing challenge and was asking fans to send ideas in. So I sent an idea in:

Following New Paths

I’d started the day getting a bit carried away walking Elfyn. Lucky enough to live near a good loop of country lanes, this was where I was heading. You might have to deal with the smell of cow poo (which Elfyn loves…) but walking past all the fields takes me back to my childhood every time. When I use to watch the lambs run around the pond in the field behind my parent’s house as a kid. Watching them try to figure out they could actually run all the way around it, not just half way. When I used to go and feed the calves in the calving shed at my Nain and Grandad’s farm. The closer I am to a farming environment, the more at ease I am.

So walking along to pause near a gate to a field full of fluffy little lambs, it was enough to put a smile on face. Especially as I watch Elfyn weighing them all up in his little head. He was on the lead obviously as we were still stood on the road. Lambs are just such lively little things the way they prance around the fields then snuggle up next to each other to sleep. They’re coats so pure and clean. They’re always a sign Spring has come for me and I wasn’t sure I was going to see any this year.

I thought I had a route in mind for the daily dog walk. I was doing the longer walk to tire the crazy pup out. However, getting to a certain point where I could carry on using a route I’d done quite a lot recently or turn left to carry on along a bridleway I wasn’t sure which way to turn. It wasn’t a life changing decision obviously, but my indecisiveness took over. The turning left option was a path I’d never bothered to explore before. I thought it was a long drive to a posh house. There was no cattle in it as the field had been ploughed. With the sun shining and the ground solid underfoot I thought today was as good of a day as any to try it out.

I’ll admit there was a slight hint of guilt that took over me as I was passing through. Farmers must be working on overdrive right now doing all they can to get food on our tables. There’s no ‘calling in sick’ for them. If their cattle go into labour, it’s on them to help deliver them. Field’s don’t get tended to without someone driving the tractor. So getting to any gates I made sure I covered my hands with hand sanitiser before and after touching them to open (and close!) them. Luckily there was only one gate to deal with.

Wandering through the fields I wasn’t all that far from home, but it was enough to feel like an escape. To take a deep breathe in for the first time in what felt like forever. A pair of buzzards had caught Elfyn’s eye as I saw his nose following them round as they hovered in the sky. A sky that was blue and cloudless. Random trees in the middle of fields breaking the line of the horizon. So many scents filling up his brain as his tail wagged at a million miles an hour.

Yes it’s fab to say I was in Mallorca not too long ago, but you can’t beat the British countryside can you?

Exploring just a tiny bit of the world I’d not seen before just brought a sense of relief that I’d needed for so long. This was where the idea I sent to Cara came from, following new paths. It’s funny how words to one person can mean something completely different to someone else. I may have just followed a new path with my dog that day, but it matches everything going through my head right now. Where us as a human race are so vulnerable right now, so how we spend our time becomes so much more valuable. Our whole lives have been flipped upside down, so you start to reassess how you’ve been spending your time up to now.

Was what you’ve been working towards actually what you want?

Or are you just scared to do something else because of the leap of faith it requires?

Are you just going to stick to somewhere where you don’t really slot it?

What do you regularly waste your energy on? Worry. Stress. Jealousy.

Do you just want to plod on and live the path laid out in front of you, or deep down is time to switch it up and take the jump?

All those ‘quotes’ that hit you hard suddenly start running round in your head and you’re wondering who the hell you’re suppose to be listening to. Or does the grass just seem greener because cabin fever has set in?

So when Cara’s live session was playing when I started writing this post, I loved hearing her take on the idea I’d sent over. The session is still over on her Facebook page if you fancy a listen.

The whole thing about how people interpret a collection of words got me thinking as well. Would a 24 hour blog writing challenge work? So this might be something I try whilst there isn’t much cycling to write about.

This is probably a bit of a random blog post to put out there, but despite having all the time in the world to write right now, I just haven’t had the lightbulb moment. Until now. Which is why I’ve interrupted the Elfyn Antics post series.

So whilst we try to work our way around all the problems the world is throwing at us right now, just know we’re in this together.

If you need to chat, drop me a message.

If you just need a good rant, that’s cool too.

We’ll get there. Eventually.

If you want to listen to Cara’s Live Session, you can have a listen here

 

Elfyn Antics: How A Puppy Took Over Our Lives Part 1

Sprocker Spaniel Puppy

I’ve been wracking my brain on what to write on here since the Mallorca post. With no races or epic bike rides happening, I was a bit well…stuck. I’ve seen enough Zwift blog posts to make my head hurt. There’s enough ‘how to plan a routine’ posts out there too. And to be quite honest, when we can’t ride our bikes like we used to, do we really want to be reading about it? Probably not.

Therefore, welcome to a new blog post series on Lucy’s Life and Bikes. Elfyn Antics.

For those of you that don’t know, on 10th June 2019 we picked up a very small Sprocker puppy, who like the petrol heads we are, named him after Welsh rally driver, Elfyn Evans. My Mum’s dog is called Jenson, so you hopefully get my drift.

Ever since Ryan and I moved in together, I was adamant we needed a dog. However, with Ryan away most of the time and me working 8-5, it just wasn’t fair on the potential pup we’d give a home to. At the start of 2019 however, things started to change. That was when Ryan stopped cycling. All of a sudden there was a massive gap in our lives. I wasn’t following him to Time Trials anymore and if we were at a Crit race, there would just be my bike in the back of the van. In the space of a morning, Ryan had gone from doing an early morning strength session at the gym to being told he couldn’t exercise again due to a heart condition.

Months went by and I had the London Marathon as a distraction. We both had it as a distraction really as Ryan got me through injury after injury. So, I guess we could ignore the pain of his diagnosis for a few months I guess, but post-marathon I realised something had to change. I’d been surrounded by people going through tough times before, and the common occurrence in all those memories was a four-legged friend wagging its tail every time the family got home. We needed a dog.

Sprocker Spaniel Puppy

Now, it pains me every time the Dog’s Trust advert comes on the TV. For many it works out getting a rescue dog and I love it every time I see one of my friend’s give a rescue dog a home. For us though, I knew we needed the carnage of a puppy. We needed the crazy half hour energy bursts before bed. We needed the little furball snuggling into us on the sofa getting lost in all the cushions. We did look at local rescue centres, but many of the dogs came with complicated needs and were 8 years plus. They were dogs we knew we wouldn’t get accepted for by the rescue centres.

Then it came to decide on a breed. With a small house and garden and steep stairs, there were a few dog breeds that just weren’t possible. Having grown up with a Labrador, we knew one of those would fill up the house just a little too much. I love my Mum’s Labrador to bits, but there’s just no stopping those things when they see a squirrel.

I think everyone expected me and Ryan to get a sausage dog if I’m honest as we were constantly tagging each other in sausage dog videos on Facebook. That’s where the steep stairs in our house came into it. There was no way a sausage dog was getting up the stairs in our house. With me also still being active, a sausage dog wasn’t going to be able to do a 10k run with me was it? We knew we’d still be too active for one, despite Ryan not being able to cycle he can still go on long walks in the mountains within reason.

All dogs are clever creatures in their own ways, but I knew we’d need a dog that was fairly switched on. One that could pick up on what we were going through. I wanted a gun dog breed, and this is where everything happened rather quickly. On the Friday afternoon when Ryan was driving home from work, I decided to blurt out that I wanted a dog. I was trawling the internet, but just didn’t trust any of the sites I ended up on. One phone call to my Uncle later, by some miracle his best friend’s dog just happened to have popped out a littler of Sprocker puppies. For those who don’t know, that’s a cross between a Springer and Cocker spaniel. And there was just one of the little balls of cuteness left. ‘Spesh’ as they liked to call him, but more on that later.

By the Sunday, we were heading into Cheshire to where the puppies were still feeding off their Mum. Barely a few weeks old there were puppies everywhere. There he was, the first puppy we saw out of the litter that just happened to be the only one left, plodding towards us. A puppy covered in white fur and chocolate covered spots, including a heart shaped spot on the top of his head. Naturally you have a cuddle with the other puppies, but ‘Spesh’ had stolen my heart with his extra toes on his back legs. Within 10 minutes I was asking how much he’d be. He was going to be the furball that would turn our lives upside down in the best possible way. He was from a breeder we trusted and was surrounded by cuddles 24/7. It just felt right.

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The following weeks felt like the longest because I just wanted a puppy to be running riot in our house already. I had to refrain myself from emptying the toy shelves in Pets at Home. Although I did allow myself to buy a little Cow cuddly toy, that’s still going strong despite being deaf when Elfyn chewed his ears off. It’s lasted longer than his monkey, who is deaf, has one arm but no hands, and is legless too. Chewy puppy…

We went to see him one more time before we could finally pick him up. Kate sent us so many photos, which helped ease the lack of puppy cuddles in between visits. We sat in the sun watching puppies fight over toys whilst soaking up the sun. I didn’t want to leave that was for sure. We quickly realised we also had the greediest puppy when Elfyn kept chasing his Mum around for food. She was having none of it…ha.

On 10th June, the day after I’d been in London for the DSI Skoda Cycling Academy with Sarah Storey, we were driving once again into Cheshire, but this time we’d be bringing Elfyn home. After a good catch up with my Aunty and hearing about how it went for the other puppies when they got picked up, we were walking out to the van with Elfyn in a blanket that smelt of his Mum. As we drove away the most pain wrenching howl came from this little puppy. He howled and howled. I felt like the worst puppy parent in the world. Had we taken him away from his Mum too early? I was in tear. Ryan was driving and looking at me with no idea what to do. I cuddled and cuddled him, but the howls still came.

I lifted him up to adjust his blanket and the howling stopped. I brought him back down for a cuddle and the howls returned. After all that drama the little monster just wanted to look out of the window…

So quite a few words later, that’s the first instalment of Elfyn Antics. I hope you enjoyed giving it a read and will be back to read the next one. This was more of the background story…next up is bringing him home!

Follow me on Instagram , Facebook, or Twitter, so you don’t miss any!

 

 

 

The British Way of Thinking

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Being typically British…we moan…a lot! Conversations will contain something negative and we’ll soon find ourselves absorbed into a negative way of thinking.

“This isn’t going the way I want”,

or

“I deserve this”.

Life generally isn’t going the way we planned.

But whilst lost in this bitter way of thinking, life is passing us by.

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We turn on the TV in the morning, instantly fed negative news stories where reporters find the most minute of things that are wrong with this world.

Yet all the great things go unpublished.

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Social media feeding our minds with ideal lives we haven’t got.

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But what have we got?

Exactly that.

Life.

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We can wake up each morning, whether that be to rain or sunshine, to live another day.

We may not all be travelling around the world.

We may not all be able to afford a CHANEL wardrobe.

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We may not feel we possess the ideal looks everyone admires to have.

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But what does everyone reading this have?

We have a life to fulfil. 

Fill full of laughing until you can’t breathe.

Fill full of laying around when the sky turns from a sunset to become full of stars.

Fill full of doing rather than overthinking the ‘what ifs’ first.

Change “What can I do today” to “what can I do for someone else today?”.

Not being so quick to pass judgement when you don’t know the full story. It never truly boosts your self-confidence does it?

Sticking to what you love and not changing to conform to the majority, so wear last season’s clothes because they make you feel good about yourself.

Wear the outfit that’s a little bit ‘out-there’, which has been sitting on your private Pinterest board for months.

Try everything out of your comfort zone, because what have you really got to lose? You might decide to put it on the “Not a Fan’ list or find your newest obsession.

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Whatever life we have been give, it’s important to make the most of it. Cliche, but it’s true.

Sometimes you’ve just got to run…

 

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I used to hate running. A jog around my local park would be enough to make my lungs cry…and now I’m training for a triathlon.

How things change!

I can’t pin point exactly when that change happened, but things have changed. All I do know is that I started to do something a little different from just riding bikes all the time. As great as that can be, sometimes I like to mix things up.

If you’ve been on my Instagram this week you’ll have seen all of the running I have been doing this week. With one of those runs being a little out of my depth…

I woke up with the urge to do sprints. Don’t ask me why, but I did. A choice between 20/10 intervals and 3 minute intervals, I chose the latter.

Both were workout sessions on my Garmin, so off I went to start the 10 minute warm-up at a steady pace. Constantly looking down at my watch to see how long I had left I had to up my pace.

3.4 miles later…my watch was beeping at me to tell me my workout was complete, which came as a surprise to me as I thought there were more sets to come.

Most people would start to head home after this, but I decided to run a little bit further…

Bad…bad idea.

It turns out I ran a further 5.4 miles, so totalling up to nearly 9 miles I’d covered a lot more distance than I would normally. I just switched off and kept going!

Yes I moan, but sometimes you’ve just got to run.

London at Christmas Part 1: Chelsea

Walking out of South Kensington Station we were confronted by a Lamborghini garage and a Bentley driving past….we were definitely in Chelsea. Uniform buildings three or four floors high with flower boxes on each window. Paved pathways passing the many gates providing access to the six-figure Chelsea houses. Steps up to their painted doors and Christmas wreaths hanging from their iron cast door-knockers.

It was a far cry from the hustle and bustle of Oxford Street, which we’d accidentally found ourselves on the night before.

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We had no real agenda in Chelsea, I just wanted to go there. Ok it might slightly have something to do with the fact I watch Made in Chelsea on a regular basis…but anyway that’s not the point.

I was just in awe of how pretty it all was. How a few miles away you can be crammed in amongst hundreds of people all trying to get to different places. Then you have, Chelsea with multiple picturesque streets empty till the homeowners return from work.

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Granted the shops contains price tags way above what I could afford, the money I’d spent in Urban Outfitters in Selfridges the night before seemed somewhat mediocre. I think I got lucky with this outfit though because Selfridge’s price tags had quite a few 0’s on the end too!

I felt serious guilt buying this outfit (skirt and jumper photographed) but I knew it would be one of those things I’d regret not buying.

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So our trip round Chelsea was more of just a wander, but we did manage to wander round places like the Saatchi Art Gallery as well as having a tasty lasagne in POCO on the Duke of York’s Square. From the craziness of central London the night before it was nice to see some of the quieter parts of the big city.

 

Bike Maintenance & Driving Tests

This week I finally passed my driving test, which is surprising with how nervous I was not just throughout the test but all day…

To take my mind off the test I got to work on my road bike. Despite having just left a job where I was predominantly building bikes in a workshop, I didn’t work on my own bikes all that much.

So I got rid of the squeak coming from the headset on my road bike….

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For me cycling is more than just a sport I participate in. Encouraging girls to enjoy being active and being outdoors is just as important.

Growing up I couldn’t quite decide whether being a ‘tomboy’ or ‘girly’ suited me best. When most girls ‘found’ make-up, I still had scars on my shins from many failed attempts to keep up with my brother on my bike. Social media was beginning to grow in popularity and I felt I had to act a certain way to be considered ‘normal’. I’d go from being outgoing and loud, to being crippled by nerves with the many judgemental comments I thought might be fired back at me going through my head. Even the smallest comments stuck with for a long time. Some of them still do.

Finding bikes changed that.

I’ve had those rare runs where I’m at the top of a Downhill track and I’m completely tuned in to what’s around me and what lays ahead. Riding on instinct instead of thinking how I can get to the bottom as soon as possible. Relaxing into corners and saving wash-outs. All of a sudden how I looked or acted wasn’t important. Chasing adrenalin was.

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When I got a message of Lizzie, who I use to go to school with, I jumped at the chance to talk at her Girl Guides & Brownies group about helping the girls get out on their bikes this Summer. If I could encourage even just one of these girls to go and ride her bike this Summer, it would be worth it.

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I started the talk by asking the girls to attach labels I’d made to the parts of the bike they thought they might be. Seeing them so willing to get involved was quite humbling.

After going through how to check their bikes were safe to what is good to put in their backpacks, Q&A’s followed. With them asking so many good (and sometimes difficult to answer!) questions, I hope they have the most amazing Summer out on their bikes! Talking in front of a lot of people isn’t exactly a strong point of mine, but they were so polite and a credit to their families & Lizzie.

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Cheshire Oaks Designer Outlet

Is it just me who looks for staple pieces they want in their wardrobe for years before actually finding what they want? Cut-off denim shorts, ripped skinny jeans, a boho playsuit….just to name a few! And I have now got all of them after raiding H&M and Primark a few months back. But my ‘Want List’ is a lot longer than that!

I’m at a point with my wardrobe where it needs a serious update. My lack of growth spurts means I haven’t actually grown out of many clothes from my teenage years. But turning 20 in July…it’s probably time I looked my age!

Cue Cheshire Oaks Designer Outlet!

My favourite places to have shopped this year are Liverpool, London and Cheshire Oaks. The Pull & Bear shop and H&M in Liverpool are amazing! And don’t get me started on Appletree Boutique on Portobello Road in London! (Click HERE to read about my trip to London!)

Shopping in Liverpool and London are fairly recent, but I’ve always loved going to Cheshire Oaks. I’m obsessed with Nike high-tops so the Outlet store in Cheshire Oaks is the place I’ll go to get them.

But for this trip I wasn’t really planning on buying anything. That was before I realised the new Ralph Lauren store had opened…

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Exploring Ralph Lauren

I don’t know when my obsession with Ralph Lauren started. Probably from spending the majority of my childhood in Cheshire…it’s like a second home. But regardless, I wander round their newly-built store admiring the brightly coloured, clean-cut designs they’re known for.

From my trip to Appletree Boutique in London I picked up a flowery skater skirt which was pastel in colour. It was too pretty to leave behind, but I realised I haven’t got much to go with it. I had a pale pink chiffon vest top in mind which I managed to find wandering round RL and picked up the shirt above to try on too. Pink and green probably shouldn’t work together…but it does!

Now the price. I felt rather guilty paying £39.99 for a shirt. But then I thought how much I’d end up wearing it, which would probably be a lot! I’ve already got one shirt from RL and it still looks great after a few years. That’s what I mean by those staple pieces for my wardrobe. Things I’ll wear a lot and go with more than one thing in my wardrobe. Things that will last rather than only being ‘on-trend’ for a few months. Timeless pieces are always winners in my eyes.

Joules

Joules Jumper £34.95

Back to my Cheshire roots, Joules was a brand I was around a lot growing up. It’s a brand I remember my Aunty wearing a lot and I adore the vibrant fabrics they create their well-made pieces from. And a Joules jumper has been on my ‘Want List’ for a long time! The way it’s cut makes it extremely comfy and the fabric is soft to touch. Part of ‘maturing’ my wardrobe is going to be sorting through my countless amount of hoodies. This subtle design for a jumper is something I can’t wait to wear on trips to the beach for BBQ’s which I’m hoping to do this Summer. And come Autumn I’ll pair it with my spotty purple Joule’s ankle wellies walking my crazy chocolate Labrador.

Wandering round with Amy we soon ended up back where we started. Quite confused wondering how we got round so quickly. The benefit of going in the week when no school holidays are on I guess!

Some of the other shops we went into included the Yankee Candle shop and Whittard’s Tea. I’ve never been a big drinker of tea, but after getting hooked on Lemon Green Tea a few months back that’s starting to change.

On a table as you walk into the Whittard Tea shop is a display of their Cranberry & Raspberry, Turkish Apple and Dreamtime Tea. I was particularly drawn to the Dream Time tea as it contained Vanilla which I am a big fan of. You could try the other two teas which were both quite sweet to taste, but lovely all the same. After my mini shopping spree I decided I should make up a ‘Birthday List’. Not that I expect anything but it’s always awkward when you get asked what you would like for your birthday and you genuinely have no idea.

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Further into the shop you could also try their Milk Chocolate and White Chocolate flavours of Hot Chocolate. It was heavenly! The White Chocolate took me right back to being a child and eating Milky Bars. The image of the Milky Bar kid instantly popped into my head. Two more things to add to the ‘Birthday List’…

Looking around the Yankee Candle shop was just as fun. Some scents that stood out for me were Sahara Sands and Kilimanjaro Stars. The first one being fresh and a fairly light smell where as the latter had a bit of a stronger scent to it. I resisted from buying any though as I already have Yankee Candles which I received as Christmas presents to use!

All shopped out we headed to ‘Giraffe‘, which celebrates food from around the world. Not wanting anything too heavy on the stomach I went for a ‘Surf’s Up Sarnie’ whilst Amy went for the BBQ Chicken Quesadilla. The food there is so tasty! We also had smoothies and I’ll definitely be trying to re-mae the one I had. The ‘Hippy Hippy Shake’ that consisted of pineapple, passion fruit, mango, banana and pomegranate juice. I will most certainly be going back to ‘Giraffe’ as the relaxed vibe there was perfect to have a long-awaited catch-up with Amy.

So considering I wasn’t planning on buying anything, I would say I had a pretty successful day. One step closer to that ‘Grown-Up’ wardrobe…ha!

 

Opinions. Not Facts.

“The less you care about what other people think, the better life becomes.”

A saying I’ve heard time and time again, but acting on it is another question. Even more so nowadays with the likes of social media allowing people to post their opinions daily.

Opinions.

Not facts.

Which is what many tend to forget.

Instead of accepting someone’s lifestyle, no matter how much it differs to your own.

Everyone is writing their own story. You might be in one chapter of that story or many. But it’s up to them to decide on that.

No matter who passes judgement on where you’ve been or where you’re heading. Family. Friends. People who barely know you at all. The only person who can write your story is you.

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