Hello lovelies! I hope you are coping okay with Monday morning!

Today I’m sharing some of my talented husband’s photography with you.  He’s an excellent photographer and loves getting out and about and taking pictures of our beautiful city!! These were taken before Christmas, but it’s amazing how beautiful London looks even on the greyest of days! The made me smile so I hope they do the same for you.

Enjoy!

 

The London Eye & Houses of Parliament

Trafalgar Square

The London skyline!

The National Gallery

Just as beautiful at night time

Photography Credits // Paul Erler

    

So, you may or may not have been aware that it was my 25th birthday a few weeks back (yaaaaay) but I’m not going to write about that today because I’ve written it to death! Instead I’m going to write about a little day trip me and my mum took to celebrate my birthday. It was 2 weeks ago, when the weather was still lovely in London my mum came up and took me to Borough Market in London Bridge for lunch.

We met at Greenwich Pier and took the Thames Clipper boat a few stops to London Bridge as it was such a nice day. This mode of transport in London is quite pricey (roughly £6 one way for an adult) but when the weather is glorious and you can’t stand the thought of a sweaty tube journey then it can be really lovely. Also, if you are in London to see the sites you can tick off quite a few just on your sailing jaunt.

If you haven’t visited Borough Market before then you are doing your taste buds a disservice! It is well renown as one of the best food markets in London. It’s got several sections, with some stalls selling meat, cheese, cakes and fresh produce to take home and others selling hot, ready-to-eat street food. These meals are truly amazing but you need to be prepared to queue, especially for the popular ones! In the past I’ve sampled giant German hot dogs, falafel wraps, Ethiopian curries and massive pies, but, as it was my birthday, this time I went for a pork roast dinner in a bun! Complete with crackling! So naughty but so worth it. We ate our meals by the river and then spent a while exploring the rest of the market and buying chocolate brownies for pudding!

 After all that good food and wandering around we were up for a lil afternoon cocktail and I’m just going to mention the Bills in London Bridge. It’s nestled amongst the old buildings, cobbled streets and the Golden Hinde which gives it the perfect shabby chic location. I’m not always Bill’s biggest fan – the one in Greenwich is less than average – but this one is fabulous! My new favourite cocktail is Hedgerow Fizz; a yummy champagne cocktail with elderflower and blackberry which is super chic and tastes amazing – and I’ve only ever seen it here! It’s a lovely place to sit and watch the world go by.


Such a lovely day. If you are visiting London I would seriously recommend taking the Jubilee Line down to London Bridge to explore this fantastic, foodie part of town.

Have you been to Borough Market?

xox

If you live in an urban area you will know the drill; gardens are golddust! You pay rent over and above for a garden flat and everywhere you go in London tiny little bits of ‘outside space’ (term used very loosely!) are being utilised whatever the health and safety risks. I have seen benches squeezed onto gaps between the front door and the street and even BBQ’s crammed onto slithers of roof! Basically- any space at all even the size of a shoebox; you’re lucky.

So imagine our joy when we moved into this ground floor flat and weeded what was a very overgrown bit of land at the back! Hurrah! A garden! Paul spent many hours slaving away clearing the stinging nettles and has a few war wound to prove it, but wasn’t it worth it?! So happy. Furniture is currently pending.

Summer; come at me!

xox

Living in the middle of a busy city, there is nothing I like better than escaping for the weekend and getting a bit of fresh country air.  Luckily for me I have a lovely cousin how lives in Hampshire, about a 2 hour drive from South East London, in a lovely town with a stunning river walk and a gorgeous country pub!

We travelled down this weekend and as we were sat in traffic on the M4 I could feel a sigh of relief as we left London behind us! I do love it, but sometimes you need a break. I am horrendously busy at the moment what with finishing my degree and the wedding coming up!

As you can see from the pictures we took a lovely country walk along the canal, complete with pigs, a bubbling river and some lovely little barge houses. I have to say I am quite drawn to the concept of living on a house boat.  There is something very calming about it.

What a beautiful sunny Spring day we had. Feeling blessed. Now back to another manic week of busy, city life!

xox


One of the more obvious perks of being a full time student compared to being in fulltime work is, of course, the holidays! Travel is my passion, so any short holiday that I get I take the opportunity to scrape some pennies together and go somewhere. On this occasion my family were keen to come too, so me, my partner, mum, dad & brother ended up heading to Barcelona for a long weekend.

I’ve never been to Barcelona before and it’s somewhere I have always wanted to visit. As a city break I would thoroughly recommend it although, to be honest, two nights wasn’t enough in my opinion. Due to its harbour location and the proximity of many lovely beaches to the city I would like to go again and actually go for a full length holiday. I think it’s the sort of place you could get a good balance of city sight-seeing and relaxed beaching over a week’s trip.

Having said that I loved to city itself.  I have never really been that interested in ‘buildings’ or architecture, but the Antonio Gaudi buildings that are scattered through the city were truly stunning and even I could spend hours looking at them. His work is so interesting because it looks like a cross between a Dr Seuss illustration and a set from a Tim Burton movie.  Considering he lived 100 years ago it’s hard to imagine how ‘before it’s time’ his structures would have been in his lifetime!

Unfortunately, it was torrential rain for our first day of sightseeing! We managed the ‘Sagreda Familia’; the enormous Gaudi cathedral which is an amazing architectural feat and still not completed to this day, Gaudi’s ‘Park Guell’; an elegant park full of Gaudi’s stunning mosaic sculptures and the slightly less cultural but none the less important ‘NeuCamp’; the famous home pitch of Barca football club!  All of this in the soaking wet resulted in some soggy raincoats and cold feet (I only took flip-flops!!!) but still an amazing day.  The following day we were lucky and had a lovely sunny day. We went up to the MNAC museum to see the amazing view of Barcelona city and went to visit another of Gaudi’s buildings ‘La Casa Mila Pedrera’ which in its day was an enormous house designed by Gaudi for a rich family living in Barcelona and is now open to the public.  Its name means ‘The Stone Quarry’ which has stuck from when it was built the family’s neighbours hated the building and called it that because they thought it looked like an ugly pile of rocks!

For anyone thinking of or planning to visit Barcelona my top travel tips are:

1.  Use the open top tourist bus! A bit cringy for me as I usually like to walk everywhere and it is quite pricy however, Barcelona is very spread out and it would take hours to walk around all the sights! Particularly if you want to get out to the Park Guell, the football stadium and any of the beaches or harbour then the bus tour is a good deal. It includes 3 routes and covers everything and you can by multi day tickets too.

2.  Sagreda Familia (pictured above) – and get there early! My one regret of the trip, we didn’t arrive until lunchtime and all the tickets to go inside were sold out. Even if you don’t want to pay the steep €15 entry fee I would recommend getting there early so you can get a picture outside without thousands of selfie sticks in it.

3.  The view from the MNAC museum (pictured above). A stop on the bus ‘red route’ we actually got off to see the museum and didn’t realise it had a beautiful view over all of the city. A very good picture!

4.  Don’t eat on La Ramblas! The main strip of markets, bars and restaurant with street entertainers and lots of hawkers! Fun and a good atmosphere for walking around at night and having a cocktail not the food = overpriced and yuk.

5.  Eat at La Rosal 34. Seriously, if you do one thing – go here! We were recommended this restaurant by our hotel and you do need google maps to find it as it is out of the way BUT literally one of the best meals I’ve ever had. It has a Michelin star (first time I’ve eaten in a place that has one!) and it won’t cost you an arm and a leg. It’s a lovely traditional restaurant serving tapas and main meals and very yummy. We went there two out of our three evenings!  Also not a tourist insight (apart from us).

Have you been to Barcelona?

xox