Monday, 27 July 2015

Green Press Adventure

Last weekend, Green Press kindly sent me a box of their amazing organic goodies. Alex and I were feeling like an adventure, and since we had a picnic ready to go, we decided to hit Sherbrooke Forest for a bit of a hike.

I spend approximately 68% of my daily commute drooling over Green Press' Instagram (particularly their Krispy Klean donuts), so I was SO excited to try some of their treats. Green Press is all about making amazing, fresh food from real ingredients, no shortcuts. They have a range of hilariously named cold pressed juices ('Cayenne West', 'Kaling Me Softly' and 'Sesame Treat' being some of my fave names) which all come in beautiful glass bottles. They are full of nutrients, naturally low in sugar, and absolutely delicious.

Sherbrooke Forest is a stunner, it felt so tropical compared to forests back in the UK. It was after a week of heavy rain and the sun was out and everything was cold and damp, with steam rising up from waterlogged fallen branches where they were being soaked by warm sunlight. It was so fun to explore a new part of Australia, which was also so close to home.

First we tried the Beets Don't Kale My Vibe juice, which was divine. Not too sweet but not too earthy, it was perfectly refreshing fuel for our uphill part of the hike! We also drank the 'Holy Water'. If you've ever had a fresh young green coconut before, it's the closest to that in a bottle - naturally sweet and so yum. It took my right back to my Thailand adventures.










I love a good juice, but let's be honest, what drew me to Green Press was their Krispy Klean donuts. I hadn't had a donut in 2 years since gluten free donuts are certainly few and far between. I planned to give one to Alex, but I ended up eating the whole double chocolate donut myself and then later tucking into the vanilla one. I did offer him a bite at least. I love eating treats that taste bad but you know are nutritious and healthy - they are so much more satisfying. No guilt whatsoever! (Except maybe for not sharing...)






At the end of our walk we were suddenly surrounded by beautiful brightly coloured birds (maybe Rosellas?) which weren't afraid to land on us. Alex was definitely a lot more cool, calm, and collected than I was...



After a fun house party that night, I breakfasted in bed with the Choice Chia pudding and Life of the Latte. I've made Chia Puddings before but this one was top notch. I need to try and replicate this layered beauty! I expected Life of the Latte to be a sweet drink but it was just pure coffee and nut milk, which satisfied my new coffee obsession.

Green Press are only open at weekends in the city of Melbs, but they deliver fresh food around Melbourne during the week. So hit them up! I'm eyeing up their acai bowls next! And more hiking adventures of course... x

*This is not a sponsored post. I just really love this brand and their products. All views are my own* 

Tuesday, 21 July 2015

6 Favourite Instagram Accounts

I'm a bit obsessed with Instagram. I spend waaaay too much time scrolling through it mindlessly but there are a few names which always catch my eye and I'll take a proper look at their beautiful photos. There are loads of Instagrammers and bloggers whose photos I love, but these are a few of my faves, in no particular order... 

I met Cate at a blogging event about a year ago and have been following her since. She has such an amazing eye for design and composition so it's no surprise that she's an architecture and design journalist. I find her snaps so calming and beautiful, and her home is a stunner. Serious interior jealousy here.
Expect: Gorgeous styling, natural linens, soft colours, snippets of the little moments in life

@catesthill 

I'm sure most of you are familiar with Kate's blog, Gh0stparties, but it's her Instagram I'm obsessed with as well. She has a knack for finding beauty everywhere and I am loving seeing her home develop with her incredible taste in interior design and DIY skills.
Expect: Flowers, cocktails, white interiors, beauty


Jasmine might just be the coolest person on earth. At the young age of 22 she's running her own design business based on her lovely typography and interior products such as cushions. Her and her Instagram are very chic and make me want to dress in only monochrome and magically have more defined cheekbones. 
Expect: Monochrome, handlettering, behind the scenes in her studio, beautiful Jasmine herself

@jasminedowling

Amanda is a Kiwi, and I think I resonate more with her Insta since living down under since I mainly follow people in an opposite time zone! She curates little snippets of life so beautifully and in pastel shades. I kind of want to crawl into her Instagram and live there. 
Expect: Flatlays of vegan/gluten free treats, flowers, sunsets, coffee (the best things in life, basically?)

  @herecomesthesun

Oh Flora is a Sydney based flower studio owned by Tanya. She runs styling workshops where you can learn to make creations such as 'flower crowns' for weddings (ideal hen party fun right there!) and she also styles flowers for events, weddings, and more. She approaches flower arranging with such a fresh angle and is always working on beautiful new collaborations. 
Expect: Flowers, flowers, and more flowers! 

  @ohfloraflowers


Tana is an LA based photographer who I think I discovered just by clicking through a few Instas one day! Her Instagram is playful and adventurous, and her use of light and negative space is so pretty. 
Expect: Travel adventures, beachy scenes, fun arrangements of food/belongings 

@tanagandhi

Which are YOUR favourite Instagram accounts? And your own? I'm always looking for new people to add to my feed xx

Wednesday, 15 July 2015

Two new prints in my Etsy store!




I have two new designs in my Etsy store! Continuing with this collection of bold, monochrome prints inspired by nature, the Monstera Deliciosa print and Falling Leaves print are now available to buy.

I have wanted a Monstera Deliciosa (aka Cheese Plant) for a while now, but as I don't have a great record of looking after plants I've decided to get the look with a print instead! I just love their giant leaves with such amazing bold shapes. It's based off a textured painted paper cut that I did by hand at the end of last year.

The Falling Leaves print was actually a repeat fabric pattern but I loved the movement so I've reimagined it as a print as well. This was also done by hand originally, so you still get all the brushstroke details in the print.

I also wanted to add that I am now shipping prints from both the UK and Australia, so this should help keep shipping costs down wherever you are in the world! 

And the two other prints I already have in this collection... Let me know what you think!

 

Sunday, 5 July 2015

RECENTLY











Just a random collection of photos of life moments from my iPhone that needed to be blogged. I love looking back at posts like this over the years and remembering what day-to-day life was like, not just the big picture.

I've started up Kayla Itsines 12 week programme again (currently at the start of week 4). It's challenging stuff but I've been pretty homesick lately and getting a sweat on always helps to perk up my mood. Plus I just can't go on enjoying these amazing Melbourne breakfasts without upping my gym game! I've also got a new bike! I cycled a lot back in London and it's sooo nice to have fresh air again in the mornings. I've named her Honey and she's a rickety dream to ride.

Last week my colleague brought me in a raw caramel slice to have whilst everyone else had cake (as I'm coeliac). It was SO amazing so I tried making my own this weekend, just from natural, unrefined raw ingredients. It turned out pretty good for a first attempt and I made myself feel sick eating 'caramel' straight from the bowl. It needs a bit of tweaking before I share the recipe though. Have you tried making raw treats? They're everywhere here in Aus. I'd like to make a cheesecake next!

I hope you UK-dwellers are all appreciating this heatwave you've got going on! I'm not sure how many more barbecue photos I can take on FaceyB before I book a flight home. Saying that, Melbourne in Winter is not too bad compared to the UK. It's pretty cold and dark at the moment but the cold days are broken up by sunshine, and it's not so depressing when you know it'll be over in a couple of months and Spring is guaranteed to be warm. I'm enjoying curling up on the sofa in the evenings after the gym and getting my Netflix on.

What have you been up to this weekend? It's 9:30pm here, just had a lovely Skype with my Mum and now I'm off to bed haha! This girl needs her sleep x

Thursday, 25 June 2015

Moving from London - Melbourne | Tips for moving abroad

If you read my blog regularly, you'll know that in January I hopped on a plane and moved from London to Australia via a month of travelling in SE Asia. Moving across the world was sooo exciting but also pretty terrifying, so I thought I'd put together a few tips in case you might be thinking of doing something similar! 

Firstly, let's have a chat about why you might want to move. For me it was easy to pick up my life and move it, as I don't have kids or own a house. All I had to do was save some money, quit my job, and book a plane ticket... basically. So I know it would be totally different if you had more commitments. But if you're in the same situation as me and think 'one day I'd like to live abroad', I would urge you to do it and take the opportunity while you can. One day should be now! It's scary and unknown, but exciting and I think that moving to a new country makes you see things with such a different perspective. I know I'll go home and notice things that I didn't before. 

Moving has also made me get out of my comfort zone so much, in a really good way. It forces you to throw yourself into unknown situations with people you've never met, and so far it's been great. Plus this is what I kept telling myself before I moved: 'home is only a plane ride away'. I've always been the biggest homebird I know, and still am, but I also love adventure, and home will still be there when I get back. 

Here's a bit of Pinspiration:





Want pack your bags yet? I'm pretty lucky that my boyfriend is from Australia as it's an easy transition from the UK and well, summer. The only downside is how far away it is! 

There are pretty obvious things to consider when you're moving, like getting the good ol visa and plane tickets etc, but these are a few of the little things I learnt from the process: 

Before you go
- If you're going to ship some boxes, do it far in advance. Ours took 6 weeks longer than expected, which meant we had to buy new interview outfits and I was walking around with outta control hair for longer than necessary, while my hair straighteners and hairdryer were chilling in a box floating somewhere around North Korea. Naaat ideal.
- Save up enough dolla to be able to live for a couple of months at least, and use a service to move your money overseas so you don't get ripped off on charges. We used Transferwise.
-  Look for a job before you go. It was harder for us to do this as we were travelling for a month previous to arriving. But getting a job in a new country is so important, and it takes time. I felt like I was floating for so long waiting for responses and interviews. I couldn't wait to get into a routine and meet new people. Oh, and have some money coming in so I could do all the exploring I wanted to do! 



When you arrive
- Pack in the boring essentials in the first two days. This sounds super boring because as soon as you arrive in a new country all you want to do is relaaax in a cool bar by the beach, but we actually spent the first few hours after we hopped off the plane setting up bank accounts, phone contracts (bring an unlocked phone with you if poss), tax numbers, and medical stuff. They can take a few days to process so it's better to get them out the way. Then go and have a drink. 
- Get in touch with anyone you know. I met up with a friend of a friend in my first few weeks, and practically leapt into her arms. It's so nice to see a familiar face and have a good old chat about life down under.
- If you haven't got anyone to stay with or not sure where you're going to be living, book a hostel or an Airbnb before you arrive until you get somewhere more permanent. 
- Get all your family and friends to download Whatsapp and Skype on their phones! And fill them in on the time difference so they know when there are windows to talk. I chat to someone from home almost everyday and it's a lifesaver. 
- Most importantly: explore. It's easy to get into a little routine again and not spend the money on day trips or weekend breaks, but I'm aiming to try new things all the time. I have a 4 page document of restaurants/cafes I want to go to! And I'm planning on going up north and to New Zealand when I can. 

Living abroad isn't all butterflies and daisies, but I'm so glad I did it now. Have you ever lived abroad or would you consider it? x



Friday, 19 June 2015

South East Asia Travels Part 4 | Bangkok

It's been a while since I posted about our South-East Asian adventures, but I'm going to pick up where I left off in Chiang Mai/Pai, and let's just pretend that THIS post, was last week... not three months ago. 

Bangkok was a bit of a whirlwind. Over two days I felt like we saw a lot of it but also none at all. The whole time I had no idea where we were ha! On day one it was unfortunately Alex's turn to be struck with food poisoning. We struggled around the huge and famous Chatuchak market, which was amazing. I wish I could have stayed longer but poor Alex needed to lie down and I didn't want to try and navigate back to our hotel alone as it was pretty far.

Luckily the hotel we had booked turned out to be a dreamy oasis in the middle of the craziness. So much that none of the tuk tuk drivers ever knew how to find it! I lay down in the tropical garden area and read my book with an iced coffee while Alex recovered. I would really recommend this hotel - it wasn't that expensive at all and the room and gardens were lovely.

That evening we headed out for food and I had the most incredible Tom Yum soup. This turned out to be my favourite dish in Thailand - kinda like a thai curry but in a creamy soup form with rice noodles! YUM. 

The next day Alex felt more lively so we headed off to China Town. Squeezing down alleyway after alleyway there were never-ending piles of snacks, fresh food, meat, dumplings, unidentifiable things, and colourful packages and paper. It was a party for the senses!

After A LOT OF wandering, the sticky heat started to get to us. We got lost for a while and then stumbled upon this beautiful park where we lay in the grass to read. We were getting comfortable when suddenly a giant lizard type thing ran past and I was suddenly not lying on the ground anymore. We spent the rest of the time boating around a lake trying to spot more lizard things (komodo dragons?!) and saw some which were the size of small crocs! 

As the afternoon went on, we saw an event being set up across the park. We wandered over, hired a picnic rug and bought some popcorn and lay back to witness a concert starting. It was the most magical and yet surreal evening accidentally listening to live classical music in a park in Bangkok on a hot and humid night.

We found our way to a rooftop bar to finish the night off with a few rounds of cocktails. I would link to all these places that we went to, but as I said, I really didn't have a clue where we were the whole time! Bangkok was so huge! 

I would like to say we spent our last day exploring things like the Grand Palace and some temples. But honestly we'd seen so many temples, all we wanted to do was walk slowly around a sparkly new shopping mall and eat ice cream, so we did. Sometimes you just have to do what you feel like, not what you think you should be doing! Have you been to Bangkok? x

*Read about the rest of our travels around SE Asia... Phnom Penh, Siem Reap + Battambang, and Chiang Mai + Pai
 

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