May & June Wrap Up: Cambridge, Blogging Silence & Roadtrips!

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Good afternoon bloggers! I hope you’re well! It’s been pretty silent over here the last couple of months, hasn’t it?

That wasn’t really intentional, but the last two months have been a bit of a rollercoaster. It’s been super busy at work and at home, and so even when I have had the downtime to blog, I either haven’t had the want to write or have felt so burnt out that the words don’t flow! I’ve found myself reaching towards Bookstagram more because LESS WORDS. My mental health also took a bit of a dip and I felt like I was taking on a lot of other people’s problems, so I’ve been doing some extra self-care!

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But, but, BUTTTTTT, by the time you read this, I will have already hopped over the pond, off on a France roadtrip adventure, and I am PUMPED. I’m going to be going from Calais, all the way down to the south coast, stopping at lots of pretty towns, and I will make sure to share my travels with you when I get back!

James Corden Will Smith gif.gifActual footage of our roadtrips when the good tunes come on.

WHAT I GOT UP TO IN MAY AND JUNE:

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If We Were Having Coffee… // Book Updates, Adventures and London Excursions

If-we-were-having-coffee.pngIf we were having coffee is a blogging community idea, where bloggers publish posts about what they’d like to say to their readers if they were sitting down together having a casual cup of coffee. I understand that the original idea was created by Ashley and I found it through Jamie’s blog.

In my mind, we’re sitting in a small cafe, halfway down a busy high street. It’s kitted out like an old 50s diner, black and white flooring, pink neon signs, and a popcorn machine sits next to an old jukebox. Twisting the Night Away by Sam Cook is playing enthusiastically in the background as I order a coffee and a pink milkshake.  What are you waiting for? Make yourself comfortable, grab a beverage, and let’s chat!

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I’d tell you that I just got over a horrendous cold, and 3 days later I’ve only gone and gotten another one! I’ve had an extremely busy couple of months and I think it’s my bodies way of saying “hey wait a minute, chill!!” (Subsequently knocking me out for the count.) I also feel like WHO IS THIS PERSON?! I’ve never had so much booked in my diary EVER. Suddenly I’m hopping all over the place and there’s not enough time in the day!!! Continue reading

Exploring Oxford: A 3 Day Itinerary with Literary Hot Spots!

Exploring Oxford a 3 Day Itinerary

When we think of travel, we always picture getting on an aeroplane and jet-setting off to a to a country far, far away – but sometimes, you don’t need to travel a large distance to see something wonderful. Sometimes, there’s something great to see closer to home.

Oxford has been one of those towns that has been on my to ‘get to’ list for a few years now. As such an iconic place where famous authors have tread and found their inspiration, and where many films and TV shows have been shot (including Harry Potter!), it seems almost criminal that it’s taken me 24 years to wander down their fancy streets.

As bookworms, I know you’ll appreciate some of the things I got to see more than most, so I just had to share my adventure with you! I’ve also tried to write this in a format that may be helpful if you ever decide to take the trip for yourself! Continue reading

#WhenImNotReadingBooks: A Day of Culture in London

A Day of Culture in London

Hello readers!

In case you can’t tell by the title, I have been off adventuring again.
Despite having spent three years going to a London University, I still find that there is SO MUCH still to discover! Because of this, every time I go to meet my friend who lives in London, she always tries to introduce me to a different area of the city, or we look up any current events that are on and check them out! Continue reading

Book Review: The Wonder of Us by Kim Culbertson

Wonder of Us reasons to read

The first thought I had when I read the blurb for this book was UM, YES PLEASE.
A once in a lifetime European trip? Complex friendship dynamics and angst? GIMMIE. So many thanks to Walker Books for mailing an advanced reader copy so it could find its way into my grabby hands!

Riya and Abby are:
Best friends.  Complete opposites.  Living on different continents.  Currently mad at each other.  About to travel around Europe.
Riya moved to Berlin, Germany, with her family for junior year, while Abby stayed behind in their small California town. They thought it would be easy to keep up their friendship—it’s only a year and they’ve been best friends since preschool. But instead, they ended up fighting and not being there for the other. So Riya proposes an epic adventure to fix their friendship. Two weeks, six countries, unimaginable fun. But two small catches:

They haven’t talked in weeks.
They’ve both been keeping secrets.
Can Riya and Abby find their way back to each other among lush countrysides and dazzling cities, or does growing up mean growing apart? Continue reading

If We Were Having Coffee…

If we were having coffeeIf we were having coffee is a blogging community idea, where bloggers publish posts about what they’d like to say to their readers if they were sitting down together having a casual cup of coffee.

In my mind, we’re sitting in a small rustic coffee shop, tucked away down a cobbled street. It has oak tables, vintage cutlery and copper decor with dim lighting, and The Civil Wars are playing in the background.  What are you waiting for? Snug in, grab a beverage, and let’s chat!

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I’d say hello lovely bloggers, it’s me, I’m alive! Contrary to popular belief, I haven’t been spirited away to join a secret Wiccan coven, I haven’t disappeared to study dragons in Peru (I wish), nor was I kidnapped by nargles…
I can’t even feign a flu powder disaster to explain my absence (something tells me you wouldn’t believe me). Continue reading

Quoting the Quill #59

Quoting the Quill

“Today I’d like to sit and read,
Forget I have a job I need.
Ignore the things I have to do,
And just enjoy a book or two.”

– Unknown

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Howdy fellow bookworms, I hope you’re well! Sorry it’s been a while, I’ve been feeling zapped of blogging creativity lately, but I’m sure it will return soon, it always does. 🙂

I spotted this fun little poetry/quote ditty on Pinterest the other day and found it amusing, so I thought I would share it with you! Continue reading

Quoting the Quill #59

Quoting the Quill

“Life has many ways of testing a person’s will, either by having nothing happen at all or by having everything happen all at once.”

– Paulo Coelho

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Hey everyone, sorry it’s been a little quiet around here lately! But as the above quote suggests, the universe works in strange ways. Do you ever find that things always seem to happen in one go? You can have months of downtime and suddenly BOOM, everything happens at once. It seems to be working that way for me at the moment.

At the start of April, I went on my much anticipated, lifelong dream trip to Italy to see Rome, and it was amazing!! Continue reading

Quoting the Quill #58

Quoting the Quill

“Here’s what I think: I think I’ve got a map in my car that wants to be used, and I think there are places we can go that need to be seen. Maybe no one else will ever visit them and appreciate them or take the time to think they’re important, but maybe even the smallest places mean something. And if not, maybe they can mean something to us.”

– All the Bright Places (Jennifer Niven)

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This was my favourite quote from the amazing book All the Bright Places I read a couple of months ago. It’s that kind of quote that makes your breath catch because it really speaks to an in-depth desire in your heart to travel. Continue reading

We’re Going on an Adventure! My Mini Christmas Road Trip.

My Mini Christmas Road Trip

Hello, bloggers!
So I know it’s been a little quiet around here lately, but that’s because I’ve been on some ADVENTURES (Bilbo would be proud of me!). I’ve really been trying to make the most of my time off, and even though I’m working part-time now, I’m super lucky because the hours are flexible. Because of this, the boyfriend suggested that we go on a mini Christmas road trip while we had the opportunity to travel, and of course, I jumped at the opportunity! We worked out a plan that allowed us to drive from place to place, and then booked some apartments with the help of Airbnb, and off we went to go and get Christmassy!

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Quoting the Quill #42

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“It’s good to have an end to journey toward; but it is the journey that matters, in the end.”

– Ernest Hemingway

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Awwh, Hemingway, you insightful man, you! I do love this quote. I’m definitely one of those people who strives towards goals and sometimes it’s too easy to get caught up in reaching them, rather than taking time out of the day to enjoy the act of getting there and living in the now.  Continue reading

Is it a bird? Is it a plane? No, It’s the Olympic Torch!

Ok so I know it’s not book related, but I’m allowed to have a random post every now and again. 🙂 Today the Olympic Torch came towards where I live, so I decided I wanted to see it. You’ve got to be patriotic once in a while right? And it’s real history in the making, happening today, and I got to be a part of it! Who knows, I may not ever get to see it again.

I took a load of pictures, some of which you can see below. They aren’t especially arty or scenic, and some of them are a bit blurry because it was difficult to get shots with all the people. But it proves I was out there, supporting the United Kingdom! 🙂

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Taking a Bite out of the Big Apple Part #2

Ok so are you guys ready for part two? Here’s part one if you missed it: Taking a Bite out of the Big Apple Part #1 Sorry it’s taken a while, it’s that darn thing called life getting in the way again! But yeah, here we go! 🙂
We began our day by marching through Times Square and down into the subway. I was greeted with a blissfully metallic smell and bustling people all with determined grimaces on their faces. I have to say I absolutely loved the subway, discovering it was one of the best parts of the trip. It’s so different to the London under203ground with a much more urban stripped back feel. I love how when you stand on the platform and the train rushes through you feel like your going to be blown away like Mary Poppins! It really is like entering a different world, like Alice falling down the rabbit hole. (Ok, I’ll stop with the book references now :P) At several platforms there were aspiring musicians, and the subway provided some fantastic acoustics; melodies of jazz and gospel bounced off every wall. We got off at the Staten Island Ferry, where we joined the commuters to catch a glimpse of the Statue of Liberty. Unfortunately it was a pretty cloudy day, but an amazing sight all the same.
After coming full circle we exited the Ferry and ambled idly through Battery Park, the world financial centre and The Sphere memorial. Along the way we encountered some very friendly squirrels. They were so tame that this man was able to feed them nuts straight from his hands, and they began climbing all over his body and up his trouser legs!

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Taking a Bite out of the Big Apple Part #1

For those of you who regularly read my blog, you may have noticed my recent post Any tips for a first time aeroplane flyer discussing little old me and my future trip to the immense New York City! Well I’m back, and I survived! Just 😉
Thank you to everyone who gave me tips for my first ever aeroplane flight, they really came in handy and I probably couldn’t have lasted without them.
At the request of several bloggers, I’ve decided to share my once in a lifetime experience with the rest of you. I’ll try not to make it too reminiscent of those naff old fashioned slideshows where family are forced to plaster smiles on their faces while bored stiff 😉 Please note, all the pictures below are my own so please don’t use them without permission.
So without further ado…023

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Any tips for a first time aeroplane flyer?

In just over a week, I will be embarking on what is probably the biggest adventure in my life to date. Visiting New York City! As soon as the opportunity arose at my school in the form of a Media Studies trip, I knew I had to go. I couldn’t let a once in a lifetime opportunity like this pass me by. New York City is a place I have always wanted to visit. Everything about it appeals to me; the fast paced atmosphere, the amazing architecture, the Broadway…… this trip is like a dream come true! I’m extremely excited, but also extremely nervous. Why? Because I am not a seasoned traveler, far from it in fact. I have never been on an aeroplane, I haven’t even set foot in an airport! Typical me picking a seven hour flight for my first time! But am I going to let my fear stop me from pursuing my dream? No! 🙂
So, with that in mind, Continue reading