3 Happy Things This Week #6

Happy Monday! I really wanted to get my head down and brainstorm some blogging ideas this week as I’ve been really slack with it, but this week has been super busy so looking forward to catching up with some blogging today! This week has also also been pretty great though, and I have plenty of reasons to be happy but here are my Top 3…

1. My Friend’s Wedding

This started off a little stressful for me this week, as plans shifted and I was pretty nervous to travel quite far on my own to attend my friend’s Wedding as i’m a pretty new driver but i’m so glad I did as it was amazing. I’ve had so many Weddings this year, and i’m loving every single one of them. From watching the nervous Groom, to the Bride’s entrance, the vows, the speeches, the first dance etc – i’m a complete Wedding addict and if I could go to one every day I would! I’ve been friends with this lady a few years, and it was just amazing to see her, her partner and their beautiful daughter to incredibly happy. Gave me that warm and fuzzy feeling all week, and made me really excited to get planning ours

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2. Cousin’s Birthday

This week marked my Cousin’s 21st Birthday, which was so important for our family. He has had a really tough year, and has overcome things I don’t think I ever could and i’m in awe of his strength. He’s still not 100%, but being out with all the family and his friends having a laugh and enjoying himself was so lovely to see and has been the thing that’s made me happiest this week!

3. Quality Me Time

Everybody who knows me knows that i’m an advocate for ‘Me Time’ and I always make sure I have some alone time planned to just relax and get my mind together. Recently things have been really chaotic, and I’ve found myself struggling more than ever with anxiousness and constant migraines, as well as feeling so run down but this week I had an unexpected gap in my schedule and it was just what I needed. I’ve managed to take myself to the cinema alone, catch up on reading, have a nice relaxing bath and get some early nights- it’s been just what my body and mind needed!

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Hope you’ve all had a lovely week- what do you do to relax when you get some free time to yourself?

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5 Favourite’s About Italy

So I haven’t blogged in a couple of weeks, as I’ve been in Italy for a 2 week holiday with my Family & watching my lovely big Brother get married!! On a Monday I usually round up a few things that have made me happy that week, but today i’m going to round up my favorite things about Italy over the past couple of weeks. In no particular order..

1. Seeing my Brother get married!

OK so maybe this one is in a particular order and absolutely has to be number 1 because this is the reason we went to Italy in the first place, and my goodness was it beautiful! It surpassed all already extremely high expectations, and was one of the best days ever. Not only was it beautiful from start to finish, but it was completely and totally emotional watching my big Brother marry the love of his life and my lovely Sister in Law Catherine after a decade (!!) of being together. I wish I could re-live the day again!

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2. Wine Tasting

I’ve never been wine tasting before, but I have certainly tasted a lot of wine. I am in no way cultured with wine and I am one of those girls that buys the bottle that should have been the most expensive but is on offer – I’m clearly an expert. We set off up the mountains of Lucca to the most incredible Vineyard and Oil Farm. If you’re ever in that area, the Colleverde Estate is a must visit. We were shown how Olive Oil is made, how wine is made, and then we sat out overlooking the most incredible view and tasted 6 amazing wines. It was the perfect start to our holiday!

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3. Riomaggiore 

We had a day trip to Riomaggiore as it is THE ‘Pinterest picture’ and we were not disappointed. As soon as we came out of the tunnel on the train the views of the sea were incredible. Once we were off the train we spotted an amazing bar with a terrace overlooking it all which we spent a couple of hours in taking in the view (and plenty of Wine)

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4. Edoardo Vegan Ice Cream (or any Gelato in Italy)

I’ve been to Italy before so I know that as well as the usual 3 meals a day, there’s also a minimum of 1 Gelato a day too. Not only because it’s super hot and refreshing, but because it’s also INCREDIBLE and i’m already craving an Italian ice cream. When we went to Florence last year, my Sister in Law got an ice cream from Edoardo’s as Beyonce had been there before (and she is obsessed). I decided not to bother because of the que, but decided to give it a go when we went on a day trip this year. The good thing about Edoardo’s is that it also specialises in VEGAN ice cream too – something I have never tried. As I said, i’m a huge ice cream fan so it was a risk in my mind for my Gelato a day to try something new but i’m so glad I did – it was so freakin delicious. I opted for Summer Fruits and after a large meal it was light & refreshing and just what I needed – also super creamy for a dairy free sweet treat so definitely pay a visit if you’re ever in Florence

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5. Rome

For as long as I can remember I’ve wanted to visit Rome, so when we planned to spend 2 weeks in Italy I knew it had to be on the list. Both my boyfriend and I LOVE history and architecture and anything that has an interesting story behind it, so we knew straight away that we were going to love it – but we didn’t realise just how much. Only a 3 hour train ride away from where we were in Lucca we hopped on for a 3 night visit and it was amazing. I’m going to do a post in a bit more detail but from food to the wine to the buildings and the history it was all just amazing- and a fab stay in a beautiful hotel with a central location definitely helped. If you get an opportunity for a few days here then go for it – you won’t be disappointed!

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Aside from all these lovely things, it was just amazing to spend so much time with my family. I mean, we spend quite a lot of time together anyway because we’re a bit strange like that but being abroad and spending quality time together was just amazing

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Your Appearance Does Not Define You

I’ve always had an inner monologue, a bit like Scrubs except funnier ;). Whenever something happens in my life, I analyse it in my head a million times and try to make sense of it, but today I thought i’d use this blog. When I was a kid I loved to write. I wrote diaries and scripts for pretend radio shows with my best friend, and as a massive bookworm I have always envied those who could articulate a story so beautifully. Although this blog is mostly revolved around recipes and my meat free lifestyle, it’s also an opportunity for me to just write what’s on my mind – and today that is the high expectations of your appearance and the idea that in order to be happy you have to look a certain way

We’re brainwashed to think this way – it’s scary how much so these days. To the point where I am engaged to the love of my life & my best friend, but I can’t get excited about Wedding planning because of the sheer dread of dress shopping. To the point where I am a Bridesmaid at my Brother’s wedding in 2 months but I can’t get excited because of the sheer dread of how i’ll look in photographs. To the point where I am going an an amazing 2 week holiday travelling to some of the most beautiful places in the world but am I excited? Nope – swimsuit. How is this possible? How are we programmed to believe that in order to be happy in a situation in our lives we have to look a certain way?

For as long as I can remember I have truly disliked the way I look. When I see somebody get their phone out to take a photo, I feel an instant pit of my dread in my stomach. I can’t remember the last time I properly looked in a mirror. In a morning I look at myself from the shoulders up (explains the outfit choices), and when i’m out somewhere I purposely avoid looking in any mirror or reflection as I know that even if I see a glimpse of myself it will totally ruin my day – how sad is that? I’m the sort of person that can find a million and one faults with myself, but somehow never notice a thing with anybody else. I know that the way I see is myself is not the way i’m viewed by others, and the insecurities I have are probably not even on anybody elses mind when they look at me but that somehow isn’t much comfort when your self esteem is at a record breaking low is it?

It’s not just the way you feel in yourself either though, it’s the comments of other people that make you stop and think ‘why would you ever say that out loud?’ closely followed by ‘how sad that this is the first thing that’s popped into your mind.’

I have been to a few dress fittings recently and my dress doesn’t fit me by about 0.5 of an inch because since December I have simply put on 0.5 of an inch around my boobs and my waist. When I was first told this I wasn’t sad, disappointed or ashamed of myself and wanting to quickly and drastically change my appearance. To me, i’d simply been notified that i’d happened to put on a small amount of weight. It wasn’t until this information was followed with how I should lose it by my next visit, or some ‘diet and exercise tips’ on how to do this that it was a bit of a blow. Why do I need to lose it? If something doesn’t fit surely you just change it? There’s this general opinion that if you put on weight/lose weight you obviously must be mortified and need to do something about it immediately and that kind of pressure just isn’t healthy for anybody. Why do we suddenly feel something we didn’t feel before based on the opinion of one person and why is so much pressure attached to our appearance?

It’s hard to not feel pressure with the media today. Every other day there’s somebody beautiful who has probably done a million and one incredible things with their life but the headline? “Drastic weight gain” or “weight loss worry” It’s so hard not to compare yourself to this. I regularly look at these photos and think wow, if they’re calling her overweight then what the hell am I? We’re all guilty of doing it – as they say, nobody is ever happy with what they have but how far is too far? When you have young impressionable girls that, instead of going out and enjoying their childhood, are comparing themselves to celebrities and worrying about their weight or how they look, in what world is that right?

I realise that this post so far has mainly been me rambling and asking a lot of questions and not really answering them but I had some pent up frustration and getting ‘pen to paper’ so to speak always helps relieve that (and a bottle of wine of course)

To summarise my ramble, appearances are nothing in the grand scheme of life. If you’re looking for a bikini body, put a bikini on your body. Beauty should always be determined by your actions and inner self so be kind, grateful & caring – and always remember the impact that even 1 word has to somebody else. Make it a lovely one! x

“Don’t miss out on 95% of your life just to weigh 5% less”

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