Saturday, 18 May 2019

23 Things I've Achieved in 23 Years

body positive travel blogger personal growth

Hey Owlets,

This week is Mental Health Awareness Week in the UK but it’s also my birthday today. Having celebrated three birthdays online, I’m beginning to run low on ideas - I’ve done “follow me to….”, “20 Things I learnt at 20”, a bucket list of things to do before I turn 21…. honestly I think I’ve done just about everything at this point. But while I’ve been busy focusing things I want to do, at no point have I ever stopped to think about what I’ve already achieved, and I think not appreciating ourselves is something we’re all guilty of. So, here we go then - 23 things I’ve achieved in 23 years. Grab a cuppa, this is going to be a long one.

Saturday, 11 May 2019

Goodbye Independence of the Seas

Independence of the Seas leaving the UK Body Positive Travel Blogger

Dear Owlets,

If you’re at all interested in cruising from the UK you’ll probably have already heard by now that Royal Caribbean basically blew up the UK cruise industry by deciding to cancel 2020 sailings and take one of their most beloved ships back to the USA full time. I know she’ll still be sailing, but it’s unlikely I’m going to sail on her again, so now seemed like a good time to say my goodbyes.

Two years ago, Independence of The Seas changed my life - she was the original holiday of a lifetime and appeared just when I needed her the most (with a little encouragement from my parents). I met the kindest people who inspired me to be the best me. I came home, took a step back from my life and set about ditching anything that didn’t make me happy. At 21 years old I basically clicked “send to trash” on my life and started again, and it was so worth it. 

Saturday, 4 May 2019

April in Pictures

Caerphilly Castle What To Do in Wales Body Positive Travel Blogger

Hey Owlets,

Be careful what you wish for! I haven't published a "Month in Pictures" in so long, mostly because the first part of the year is never very interesting then because everything came at once I was drowning in content. I'm still buried under photos to edit and to-do lists to tick off, but I'm a master procrastinator so let's ignore that and have a chat instead!

Thursday, 25 April 2019

Inside the new Bristol Fashion Week

Bristol Fashion Week Festival Review Plus Size Travel Blogger

Hey Owlets,

One of my first ever "blog things" was a trip to Bristol Fashion Week way back in 2016 only months after I'd started The Owlet - I had basically no idea what I was doing and reading back now that post is an embarrassment, so feel free to go have a laugh at my expense. That was the first and last time I posted about the show, and there's a good reason for that. For years Mum and I had the tradition of going to the show together followed by dinner, but at no point when I was watching the array of perfect women walking down the catwalk did I feel represented. While the size 8-12 models looked beautiful no one looked like me, so we stopped going. This year, however, Bristol Fashion Week has had a makeover of it's own, promising that the new look "Bristol Fashion Week Festival" would bring equality and accessibility for all, so of course I had to go take a look.

Tuesday, 16 April 2019

A Weekend Guide to the Welsh Valleys

What to do in South Wales Caerphilly Castle Plus size travel blogger

Hey Owlets,

If you live in South West England then you'll already know about the Severn Bridge drama, but for those of you that don't allow me to catch you up. Wales is incredible - full of beautiful walks, stunning scenery and something for everyone to do; in fact my "Welsh Dad" as I called him spent the entire time I knew him trying to instill some Welsh pride into this "poor Englishman". But there was just one problem - a £6.70 barrier. Despite Wales and England only being separated by a 3 mile long bridge the toll was something of a mental barrier, and it always felt unfair because you had to pay to get in to Wales but not out (although honestly, it was worth it). 

However, the days of one-sided tolls are finally over having been abolished at the end of last year, so Love The Valleys invited me to take a look round.

Monday, 8 April 2019

Hotel Review: Hampton By Hilton, Bristol Airport

Hampton by Hilton Bristol Airport Review Standard Double Bedroom

Hey Owlets,

If you hadn't already noticed I really like travelling, but getting there is the most stressful part. I know it's an added expense but sometimes staying over the night before you go can make the world of difference, and a calm start to your holiday can change the mood of the entire break. With that in mind, I wanted to give you a review of my stay in the Hampton by Hilton hotel at Bristol Airport. Before we get into that, let me just apologise for the mix of stock photos and sub-par iPhone pictures - this stay was actually gifted as part of my trip with World Duty Free so I wasn't planning to review the hotel itself, but I really enjoyed it and online reviews weren't the best so I wanted to add my two cents.

Saturday, 30 March 2019

How To Spend a Day in Lisbon

things to do in Lisbon Portugal Cruise ship Itinerary

Hey Owlets,

Thanks to all the amazing feedback I received on my County Cork post I decided to make another "What to do with a day in..." article, this time in one of my favourite cities I've ever been to - Lisbon. I don't know what it is about this city but as soon as I step off the ship it feels like I'm home. The transport is great, the food is incredible, you'll never run out of things to do and I've yet to meet an unfriendly Lisboan (yes, I did have to Google that). I've been lucky enough to visit twice and I always run out of time. So whether you're floating into Lisbon's beautiful harbour or going on a flying visit wondering how to fit everything in, here's my top 10 things to do while you're there.

Friday, 22 March 2019

Airport Shopping with World Duty Free

Bristol Airport World Duty Free Review Haul

Hey Owlets,

If you've been reading The Owlet for a while you'll know that I REALLY like shopping - I'm one of those people for who "retail therapy" is a real thing, and the only thing that improves it is getting a bargain. Since I started travelling I've managed to save a lot of money by waiting until I'm in Duty Free to top up on my favourite things.