Wednesday, 19 November 2014

Recipes // Strawberry Slice

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Wow I haven't posted anything creative in quite a while, and I haven't posted a recipe since way back earlier in the year. I've been lacking motivation with my blog recently. Life has taken over. We have had so much to plan, apply and pay for when it comes to our travels that every day off I've had has been spent sorting that. So I've had nothing new to blog about. But this week on my day off I thought I'd do some baking as I am fast becoming a sweet tooth fiend and I thought it would make a nice blog post.

I used to love baking when I was at home and since moving here I've done zilch, nada, nothing! So last week I bought some ingredients and made my amazing blueberry and greek yoghurt muffins. But they were a little burnt so didn't make the final cut for the blog. This week I thought I'd give it a go again so yesterday I set about making these strawberry crumbed slices. You can view the full recipe using that link.

They were looking really good up until the point where I thought they were still under cooked so I put them back in the oven for a final 10 mins and then started to smell a big whiff of burning!! Our oven here is very hard to read as all the numbers on the dials have worn out. So as you can imagine with guess work mistakes are going to happen.

Despite the burning they still turned out pretty well and tasted yummy which is all that matter. One of these days I will crack the oven and not charcoal everything I attempt to make!

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Monday, 17 November 2014

Christmas Ski Holidays 2015

If you’re lucky enough to have some time off over Christmas, don’t squander it on stodgy food and lounging in front of the television. Whether you’re a beginner to snow sports, or a hardened affiliate, there’s no time of year quite like Christmas at which to skim across a picture-postcard landscape of glittering snow and pine trees. Corral your friends, pack your scarf and plan your epic ski holidays 2015.

The hills might be alive with the sound of music in Switzerland, but in Austria, you’re far more likely to hear the whizz of a pair of skis or a snowboard as it slices through thick, fondant icing snow. If you’re travelling as part of a larger group, there’s a lively apres-ski scene and extensive skiing area available to those who base themselves in St Anton. Lofty Obergurgl, on the other hand, has panoramic views, off-piste skiing and incredible landscapes to challenge more experienced skiers. With a favourable destination snow report from November to May, this chilled out resort is the perfect spot to escape from it all.

Ski resorts with a view in Obergurgl

Located in a bowl of the French Alps, in the shadow of the Pic Blanc mountain, Alpe d’Huez boasts 155 miles of piste and 84 lifts, making it one of Europe’s most prominent ski resorts. With the longest black run in the Alps, plenty of opportunities to venture off-piste and the terrifying Le Tunnel descent, it’s a challenging playground for the more experienced skier. However, it’s just as renowned for its great nursery slopes, and ski lessons will be available for any beginners in your party. Beyond the slopes, there’s superb nightlife: for an unconventional pint, visit the Freeride CafĂ©, with stock market beer prices and a slide to the restroom!

For traditional chocolate box surroundings, make for the relaxed villages of Gressoney-La-TrinitĂ© and Gressoney-Saint-Jean, set against the backdrop of the Monterosa Mountains. Transfer from Turin Airport, and explore the three valleys of Gressoney, Champoluc and Alagna, with plenty to delight cross-country skiers and boarders, alike. While there’s little in the way of apres-ski nightlife, the traditional surroundings, hiking trails and quiet pistes make for a stress-free Christmas escape. 

Images by Luca Sbardella and Roberto Cilenti, used under the Creative Commons license.

Wednesday, 12 November 2014

A Little Fashion Design Help Needed

Today's post is a little different to normal... I'm after some advice. In fact Stew is after some advice about fashion design, and who better to ask than all of you lovely lot. 

Image via Pinterest

Stew's had a dream for many years now to set up his own menswear brand. Together we've got almost everything ready to hit the ground running as soon as we're home, except one minor detail... how to design the pieces of clothing. This may sound silly but having no real art or illustration flare we're getting a little stuck trying to get ideas on paper ready to be put into production. 

So really I'm reaching out to anyone that has their own fashion brand but doesn't physically draw the pieces themselves. How do you go about finding someone that can do the detailed sketches to then be made into real items of clothing? Or are you a fashion illustrator/designer willing to help us get the business started? Any help would be greatly appreciated.

And if we're being ridiculous and cannot start a fashion brand without being able to draw the clothes ourselves please let me know! Although we're determined to try regardless.

Sunday, 9 November 2014

Thinking of going on a cruise solo? Go for it!

Since being in Sydney every time we've ventured down to the harbour a huge white shiny cruiseliner has greeted us. Some complete with water slide on top, others with a rock climbing wall. It seems cruise ships contain just about everything these days and sitting down watching the world go by, staring at one has got us thinking... maybe one day we should embark on a cruise? Have you ever been on one?It's not just for the couples either, Stew will often tell me how some of the best experiences of his life were when he went backpacking around South East Asia alone.

So are you considering an adventure around the world? Travelling solo isn’t just for backpackers and businessmen, and cruises are no longer the sole remit of the aged or the moneyed. Indeed, seeing the world by cruise is convenient, safe and, most importantly, a whole load of fun for the single female traveller. Read on, do, for a few nifty tricks and considerations when setting off on that sea voyage for one.

Embark on a voyage of self-improvement
Cruises cater to all needs and interests. If you’re keen to get fit, eat well and catch up on your reading, a solo cruise will create some distance from the everyday encounters that distract you from your goals. Spend early mornings doing laps in the pool, take in some illuminating shore excursions to learn about a new culture, then reward yourself in the evening with a spa visit. Whether you've learned about wine tasting on a Mediterranean cruise or Jamaican cuisine on a Caribbean one, when you disembark, you’ll feel invincible.

Find the right deal
Cruise companies are acknowledging the appetite for solo travel and increasingly accommodating their single guests. From singles-only cruises designed to help their patrons find romance, to solo cabins on some lines, single occupancy fees are slowly but surely being phased out. If you do find yourself faced with a more traditional cruise package, book early, make sure there are no nasty solo supplements and consider sharing with a roommate for further savings, and a chance to make a friend for the voyage.

Pack like a pro
The beauty of a cruise is that you only have to unpack once, so make it count! You might have a short wait for your checked bags to make it to your cabin, so be sure to have anything you’ll need during the day in your carry on bag. This should include travel documents, a little money, a swimming costume (if you’re desperate to hit the pool) and any cosmetics and toiletries you can’t function without.

Make some friends for life (or just for lunch)
Lounging on the deck with a novel may not be conducive to making chit chat, the programme of on-board activities will give you plenty of opportunities to meet new friends. Consult the daily schedule of activities delivered to your cabin and make the most of your free time. Whether things get competitive on the tennis courts, you commiserate with a fellow losing hand in the casino, or you’re paired up with a friendly partner for a salsa lesson, it might just be the start of something beautiful… and if you don’t make a friend, you’ll at least learn a new skill.

Going on a cruise solo is an adventure, a chance to slip outside of your comfort zone. You can avoid missing out on seeing the world, and come back with a new perspective of it.

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Outfit // Minkpink Diva

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Dress: Minkpink // Boots: Boohoo // Lipstick: Mac 'Diva'

Sorry I haven't posted in a little while. Real life outside of blog life has been a little hectic, in a good way, and I've not had a lot of inspiration/opportunity to blog. However I wore this outfit out last weekend for Halloween and realised I hadn't blogged about the Minkpink dress before. I bought it a month or so ago from Glue (a cool Urban Outfitters style shop over here) in their sale for just $30. Not bad for Minkpink! I really wanna get a few more bits before I come back to the UK too as the brand is so much cheaper over here. 

For Halloween we had a few friends over for drinks, a couple of games of Flip Cup and headed out into Sydney's suburbs for a bit of a bar crawl. It was a really fun night, and actually the first proper night out we've had here. It was so nice to catch up with old faces we hadn't seen in ages too. Such a good weekend! You can catch up on some of our outings on my Instagram page. I'm gutted it had to end but we have a few more friends coming into town before we leave including the wonderful Emmerliejay!!!!! Literally cannot wait to be reunited with her. 

What did you all get up to for Halloween?
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