Posted on: Monday, 22 September 2014

The summer sun has gone down...

Today is the first day of autumn; not that you'd you know it by poking your head around the curtain in sunny Malta. The weather people tell us there is a heat wave this week! Perhaps it's a final wave before the clouds break and the first proper rain in three or four months pours down on us.

It's been a considerably calmer summer than last. Not much partying was done but I enjoyed it in other ways. 

Here are a few of the highlights of this summer:

Lloyd visited twice! 

A visit to Gozo and all the fun that ensued <3

Boat party with Rachel and her friends

A trip to the UK

I watched my first Rugby match! 

Camping at Ghajn Tuffieha - so much fun!

Reading, reading, reading 

How did you spend your summer? x

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Posted on: Tuesday, 9 September 2014

Revisiting the 30 Day Yoga Challenge

Today I went back to my yoga mat for the first time in almost a month!

I have such a bad habit of leaving things by the wayside even if they benefit me and I genuinely enjoy them. Life happens and my happy habits drift into oblivion.

The 30 day yoga challenge was something I started back in May (you can see this post here) when I was feeling a little uncomfortable with how much I had let my fitness go (I'm seeing a pattern here, are you?) It's something that's really easy to get into even if you're a complete beginner so I would truly recommend checking out the YouTube channel; it's a great place to start!

On another note I started Insanity yesterday too. I understand why it's called Insanity now! I wish I could say that I was fit or superhuman enough to have gotten through the full 45 minutes but sadly I had to stop at 25 minutes out of real fear of throwing up on myself. My limit was pushed! Even though I didn't make it to the end, it's a stepping stone and I'm really happy that I even got that far.  Later I'll do the next video :)

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Have you started Yoga or Insanity recently?

[The Malta Journals] A Trip to Gozo - Part 3

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The last part of our trip was a visit to the Azure Window in Dwejra which I kind of insisted that we visit, because really, a trip to Gozo isn't complete without seeing this spectacle.

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Little nugget of information if you didn't already know: You'll see the Azure Window in A Game of Thrones! Go and Google it now ;) It's pretty fantastic and also a spot which is close to my heart.

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We did the usual touristy thing and took some photos with the Azure in the background and then we decided it was time to cool off. A little further in, close to where the buses stop, there's a road you can walk down to a small stoney bay. We found a quiet spot and relaxed in the midday sun.  

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Where are your favourite spots in Gozo? Send me your recommendations and I'll check them out!

Posted on: Thursday, 4 September 2014

Comfort zone - first exit on the left

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Today was quite a momentous day in my life.

Today I finally put my money where my mouth is and took my first step to a new type of freedom - my first driving lesson! I made my way towards my instructor who was sitting in the car waiting for me. She greeted me happily and asked me to get into the driving seat. 'Just to let you know, I have absolutely no experience!' I exclaimed nervously. She put me at ease and we went through the initial points; mirrors, seating, clutch, gears and indicators. She tried to explain the biting point and although I'm sure she explained it very well, at this point my head was cloudy. When my head is cloudy my mind seems to just switch off, I'm not sure if this is something you normally experienced when anxious but I certainly felt flustered and I certainly panicked a little when we first got going. My teacher was amazingly nice and patient and I can't fault her at all for how she taught me.  It felt like a dream. She got me from Msida to St Julians without crashing into anyone! For some reason I imagined driving to feel 'heavy', but actually it was the opposite. I felt like I was floating above the ground, controlling this heavy vehicle with just my feet and my hands. It was amazing and like nothing I've ever experienced before.

By the end of the lesson I was buzzing and so happy! I really enjoyed the lesson and I can't wait for next week. I'm actually quite glad that I was thrown into the deep end; it wasn't what I was expecting for my first lesson at was better.

I was well and truly out of my comfort zone and it made me feel alive.

Have you done anything lately that has scared you?

Posted on: Tuesday, 2 September 2014

[The Malta Journals] A Trip to Gozo - Part 2

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Our journey continued on to the location of our stop for the night - Xlendi.

We took a bus from the station in Victoria and arrived right outside St Patrick's Hotel which is where we would be resting our little drunken heads. Since we were still a bit early we decided to see at the sea front and have another drink...aka our second bottle of wine! We were feeling rather chipper after that bottle.

Check-in was easy. A friendly receptionist explained where our room was and we made our way up.

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The room was simple, spacious and airy. I was happy to note that the balcony was overlooking the sea as I had requested but although I knew what the view was like, I didn't realise just how beautiful it would be! We were right in the centre; the calm glimmering sea directly ahead, the cliffs on the right towering over and filling us with awe (or me at least).

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Since it was a scorching day, we were both craving a dip in the sea. To make things more exciting, I suggested buying some snorkel gear which was met with approval. We each bought a decent pair from a little tourist shop for about €12 each and set off to find a quiet spot which was surprisingly not too difficult to find. 

The water was so refreshing! We spent a fair amount of time snorkeling and chilling together. It was pretty perfect.

The rest of the evening was spent chilling on our balcony watching the sun go down with a couple of beers and some pretty hilarious conversation until it was time for dinner. It's kind of become a tradition to go for Indian food whenever Lloyd and I meet so we were pleasantly surprised that there was an Indian restaurant just a couple of minutes away from St Patrick's Hotel! 

It was good. So good.
The breakfast at the hotel was lovely. We ate our food at a table next to the sea whilst there was still some shade and enjoyed every minute of it. I would have definitely stayed in Xlendi a bit longer if I didn't have to work but a little break was just what this girl needed.

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***About St Patrick's Hotel***

St Patrick's is classed as a 4 star hotel although to be honest I think realistically in this day and age it should be a 3 star. Not that there's anything wrong with it but I have seen 4 star hotels that are a lot more luxurious. I don't wish to bash it however as I did really like the hotel and the location is absolutely perfect. The breakfast buffet was also decent, though what I would have really liked to see is fresh fruit juices rather than those powdered type ones that taste overly sweet and fake (sorry). The staff seemed very nice though and I would definitely stay again!

***Sapana Indian Restaurant - Xlendi***

Despite the fact that it was very busy that night, we managed to find outdoor seating and were served by very friendly waiters throughout our meal. The food was absolutely delicious and there were plenty of vegetarian options (as there usually are at Indian restaurants - yay!). You won't be disappointed, just check out the reviews on Tripadvisor here.

  Have you ever been to Gozo? Tell me about your stay!

Posted on: Sunday, 31 August 2014

If at first you don't succeed...

I've been pretty absent from the blog lately. That's not always a bad thing though, it just means that I've been living in the present and enjoying summer!

I must admit that I do miss blogging and I have felt pretty bad about abandoning my little nook so I'll be doing my best to keep posting. My little #GetSnappy project on Instagram was also a bit of a failure in that I lasted only 16 days in total - hey, that's not so bad... :)

Seeing as it's the last day of the month, here's a roundup of the #GetSnappy photos I took on my iphone. I hope you've all been enjoying your summer?

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Is your summer in pictures too? Let me know so I can start following you!

Posted on: Thursday, 14 August 2014

[The Malta Journals] A Trip to Gozo - Part 1

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 Let's talk a bit about Gozo.

It's my haven. My little getaway from the hustle and bustle of an overcrowded Malta and a place that up until recently I had neglected to visit for quite some time *slaps self*.

Before his last visit, my man had never visited Malta's sister island so it was a great excuse to book a hotel and hop on the ferry to Gozo. Yippee!

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Our first stop was Victoria where we had a little look around the small capital and stopped for a bite and a cheeky bottle of wine at Grapes Wine Bar. Lloyd ate a baguette and I took a salad with fried goats cheese. The salad was...okay, I think the thing that saved it was the cheese because really, who doesn't like fried cheese? Nom.

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After our lunch we took a 'slightly' tipsy peek around an awesome Fair Trade shop called Organika. If I have a shop one day, it's going to be similar to this one - I literally could have taken the whole shop home with me! Instead I settled for some soap, a straw basket and some gorgeous greeting cards (only one of which will be to give to someone). Fair Trade is the future!

A visit to Victoria wouldn't be complete without a walk around the beautiful Citadel (or Cittadella) which I've read is on the tentative list of future World Heritage Sites. It is said to have been fortified in the Bronze Age in 1500 BC and has since then continued development by the Phoenicians and Romans. It's free to take a look inside the War Shelters while you're there so I recommend stepping into the depths of darkness and putting yourself in the shoes of the people who spent countless hours down there. It was really interesting to see the little rooms with their tiled floors still intact! I like to think it would have made the people there feel more at home at such a scary time in their lives...

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 Below are some amazing views from the Citadel...and our punishment for walking around in a drunken stupor can be seen at the end! :)

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