A moody weekend

Our view over Perranporth

There’s something beautiful about autumn weather and the seaside, especially when it goes all moody. It’s so cosy to sit inside whilst the wind is howling on the outside, plus I couldn’t be more content having the perfect window to gaze out of.

Sometimes you forget how nice to not have a running to-do list. Sometimes its nice not to worry about having to get for anything in particular. Reminding you it’s just as important to enjoy the small moments as much as the big.  

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King of the North(ern Quarter)

I grew up in North Wales where there wasn’t a ton of options for clothes shopping so we often made shopping trips to Manchester’s Trafford Centre. Those memories are still fairly vivid, but I don’t remember ever exploring Manchester itself. We definitely missed out, as I think I’ve found a new city to fall in love with.

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Looking back on 2017

Looking back over 2017, a few things have happened. I moved out of home (and Cardiff) and moved to Penarth. I explored a lot of Somerset, a fair bit of Wales and a little bit of London. I consumed many cappuccinos and devoured brunch after brunch. I took inspiration from quite a few art galleries (Hauser & Wirth, The British Museum and Tate Britain to name a few). And then took that inspiration to be creative myself. Here are a few highlights of the past year in pictures. I’ve not ordered them chronologically, but by place. Enjoy :)

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Bristol

Bristol Market

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Cornwall, England

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Flushing, Corwall – the town we stayed in

Three months ago it was August, which meant time for a summer vacation to Cornwall. My memory of Cornwall is a whirl of cutesy candy coloured cottages, bunting everywhere, salty sea air, hanging out with Bear the dog and cold ciders. I read a lot (I recommend the Manifesto of How to be Interesting) and explored a few lovely corners of the Cornish country. Favourite corners include the Tate in St. Ives, the Lost Gardens of Heligan and St. Ives itself.

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Berlin, Germany

A few weeks ago I, along with my family, went on a long weekend to Berlin. It is a veritable mixing pot of old and new. Historical sites such as the Brandenburg Gate living alongside much younger architecture, like the Berlin TV tower.

I wouldn’t necessarily call it a walkable city, not in the same vein as other cities I’ve visited, such as Helsinki, Vancouver or Portland. It is very pedestrian friendly, but you have to plan ahead if you’ve only got a short space of time to explore. Luckily we were able to go to several tourist attractions, eat at some lovely food, do a little bit of shopping and appreciate just a bit of the public art.

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Helsinki, Finland

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Last month, Alex and I headed to Helsinki for a super long weekend. Before my trip to Finland, I knew only a few Finnish things, primarily the Moomins and Ivana Helsinki. I still don’t know that much more, but I’ve come away wanting to explore more of Finland (and everywhere else in the world, for that matter).

If you’re ever find yourself in Helsinki, here are a few things I recommend: enjoying a cinnamon bun & the emperors bride tea at Cafe Regatta, exploring the basement of the Arkadia International Bookshop (see the snake, the huge variety of books and plenty of places to sit and rest), see the Sibelius Monument, visit the City Museum for free and simply just wander round the city – Helsinki is a very walkable city. And remember the essential Finnish – “Hei” and “Kiitos”.

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London: Greenwich & Bermondsey

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So London, visiting my friend there came at a strange time. The beginning of January has been tumultuous. Things have begun and ended, sometimes leading me to get a little lost along the way. However, at the same time, its put everything into perspective for me. When you’re put outside your comfort zone it makes you realise the things you really want and need. So, here’s to the hope of better times! :)

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Birmingham

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One of the things I wanted to do this year was explore new places, lucky for me I’ve been able to go to both Brecon Beacons and Birmingham before the first week of 2015 was out. Birmingham is a lovely city with a good mix of traditional and modern buildings, from The Bullring shopping centre and library to the central Museum. My highlights included visiting the independent shops found in The Custard Factory, dining at Topokki (mmm, takoyaki curry), watching Birdman at The Electric Cinema (this Portlandia sketch anyone?) and admiring all the artwork in Birmingham’s Museum & Art Gallery.

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