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Weekend Wanderlust: Log House Holidays

Yesterday, in my hungover state, I watched three episodes of 'Holiday Home Sweet Home' (don't judge me, I was too sick to lean over and change the channel). One of those episodes featured Log House Holidays in the Cotswolds... I think I fell in love a little bit. 

Firstly, the location is gorgeous. I think it appeals to me because the scenery is literally on your doorstep (or rather your decking). It's the sort of place you arrive at and not need to get back in your car until it's time to go home. The cabins are all set around a secluded 100 acre lake. I have no idea how big 100 acres actually is, but I'm assuming it's pretty darn big. I think I might be developing an unhealthy lake obsession

The site, and the cabins themselves, have all been designed to be as eco-friendly as possible, and they look ridiculously cosy. See below:

Maybe it's because my house is currently freezing, but the thought of curling up in front of a wood burning stove or relaxing in the outdoor hot tub is incredibly appealing right now. My parents instilled in me a love for holidaying in the UK, and this place just looks absolutely perfect. It is, unfortunately, a little bit out of my price range, but a girl can dream, right? 

(All images are taken from 

I'm Not Going To Run A Marathon

When I wrote my 30 Before 30, I optimistically included the sentence 'Run a marathon.' I've now had a few months to reflect on my list (and start ticking things off), and I've come to the conclusion that this is not going to happen. 

Why not?

Because I don't want to.

I hate running, for a start. I also have dodgy knees and hips, so aiming to run for 26.2 miles on tarmac is probably not a sensible decision. Yes, it would be great to say I've done it, but life's too short to spend months (years probably, in my case) training to do something that I won't even enjoy. 

Also, marathon running is dangerous. According to a documentary I saw the other day, it's exactly as dangerous as skydiving. Which leads me very neatly to my replacement challenge:

23. Jump out of a plane.

5 Reasons Why It's Good To Have A Blog That No-one Reads

I follow lots of bloggers on twitter, I check my Bloglovin' obsessively, and try to comment as much as I can. Most of the blogs I follow have 300+ followers, and attract loads of comments. Sometimes I wish my little blog had a bigger following, but other times I realise that not having many readers isn't always such a bad thing. Here's why:

I've never met a hater. Let's be honest here: some people are bitches. The number of blogs I read that attract hateful comments astounds me. There seems to be a large number of people who have so little going on in their own lives that they get off on reading blogs and then leaving horrible comments about the blogger's weight/appearance/writing style/taste in clothes/the way they stand, etc etc. I'm so good at critiscising myself that I actually don't need any help, thanks.

I really do appreciate all my readers and commenters. Every comment genuinely excites me a little bit. If you're reading this, I actually do love you a little bit (not in a creepy way... Honest). 

It doesn't matter if I occasionally go a bit MIA. I'm not the most consistent of posters, and I think if I had a bigger following I'd probably feel a bit guilty about going missing every now and again. 

I can write about whatever I like. Accidentally dropping steak into my cidermy penny-pinching Grandmadetailed analysis of my all-you-can-eat consumptionshit homemade karaoke, I've (over)shared it all here. And if it's not really that interesting to other people, well, that doesn't really matter. 

I'm aware that writing this post is a bit ridiculous, because if it were entirely true then no-one would be reading it. But that's ok, because I really like irony

Weekend Wanderlust: Wandering Around Berlin

Berlin is one of those cities that just keeps giving; little gems pop up everywhere as you walk its streets. Basically, there's a helluva lot to see for free. If, like me, you tend to spend all your money before your trip is over, this is super fantastisch.

Here's some of the things that caught my eye as I wandered around Berlin:

Wandering around is my absolute favourite way to explore new towns and cities.

What's the best thing that you've accidentally stumbled upon when exploring a new place?

P.S. Bonus point for anyone who can name the 2004 indie hit that featured the phrase 'Ich heisse super fantastisch'. 

Good Stuff From The Interwebz

Blogger? Like presents? Already a bit excited about Christmas? You should definitely sign up for Charlotte's Blogger Secret Santa. I did it last year and got some lovely earrings, and a sense of fuzzy festive well being.

I thought this post on writing about yourself on Yes and Yes was really interesting. I might have to give it a try...

I loved Jess' post about tiny homes. There's something I find quite stressful about having too much stuff around me, and I love the idea of downsizing (well, I currently rent a room, but you know what I mean). Perhaps I need to get down to some serious decluttering...

I'm loving all the Christmas ideas floating around on Pinterest at the moment, and have been frantically pinning them to my Christmas board

Sorry this has been a bit Christmas-heavy. Actually, I'm not sorry at all... Only 69 days to go! 

Weekend Wanderlust: Berlin's Museums and Galleries

Quick confession: I spent quite a lot of my time in Berlin being either drunk or hungover. It's that kind of city. What I'm trying to excuse, in a roundabout way, is the fact that I didn't get stuck into Berlin's museums and galleries in the way that I usually would. I'm not too disappointed though, because it gives me another excuse to go back soon! Here's my picks from what I did manage to see:

The old TV tower at Alexanderplatz is a bit (ok, a lot) of a tourist hub, and the queues are epic... It's all quite well organised; you have to queue for a bit to get a ticket, which then gives you a time to go up the tower. I'd recommend going early to get your ticket, or there'll be a lot of hanging around involved. Personally, I loved looking down on Berlin, mostly I think because it looks like a Lego town from that high up, and I unashamedly love Lego. If bird's eye views aren't your thing, however, then give it a miss.

The Jewish Museum was incredible. One thing that I really liked about the museum was that it had a massive section that didn't focus chiefly on the Holocaust. Obviously that's hugely important, and it is addressed elsewhere in the museum, but I really enjoyed learning about other aspects of Jewish history and culture (but that might be because I'm a bit of a geek!). Architecturally, it's the most interesting and thought-provoking museum I've ever been to. Designed by Daniel Libeskind, the building has huge 'gashes' (well, windows) in the sides that you can see from both inside and outside, which to me resembled a broken Star of David. The shape of the building itself also creates a similar effect.The information centre under the Holocaust Memorial (near the Brandenburg Gate) was also massively thought-provoking; I'm going to be sharing my emotional experience of these places soon, in a separate post. 

Schloss Charlottenburg is a little way out from the city centre, but still really easy to get to on the U-Bahn. It was built as a summer palace for Freidrich III and his wife, and was added to and extended over the years. If you want to see all of it, it really is a whole day's excursion. I managed to see all of the interiors, but I was there for about five hours, and that didn't even give me time to explore the outside! If the weather's good it would be worth going just to see the gardens, but the interiors are brilliantly ostentatious. 

I know I keep saying this, but there is actually a ridiculous amount of stuff to do in Berlin. I didn't even get to hit Museum Island... I kind of want to go back right now. Does anybody want to buy me a plane ticket? Seriously, I'd be really grateful. 

Weekend Wanderlust: Berlin Shopping

I LOVED BERLIN. So much so that I'll be breaking my Berlin Wanderlust posts into three separate posts: Shopping; Museums and Galleries; Sightseeing on the Streets. 

Berlin's shopping is amazing. Unfortunately for me I went to Berlin at the end of my trip, and ended up with approximately 20 euros to get me through my last two days, days that I had stupidly allocated for shopping. Massive planning fail, right there. I didn't let my lack of money completely put me off shopping though; I managed to stake out a few shopping options for my next (and hopefully better funded) visit...

These pictures were taken in the Quartier Shopping Mall. The shops were way out of my price range (even if I hadn't run out of money!) but it's still well worth a visit. It's the best-looking department store you'll ever visit, I promise!

Near the Mall is the incredible Fassbender and Rausch chocolate shop. The chocolate smells absolutely amazing and tastes even better. Chocolate sculptures are dotted all around the shop; my favourite was the chocolate volcano pictured above. The photo doesn't really do it justice, but it looked amazing in real life, it had melted chocolate constantly pouring down the sides. 

Berlin is probably most famous for it's vintage and independent shops. I really liked Stiefelkombinat, Aus Berlin and Who Killed Bambi?The Ampelmann Shop was also something of a guilty pleasure. It's basically a whole shop full of souvenirs dedicated to the East Berlin traffic light man. I might have bought Ampelmann Christmas tree decorations.

My minuscule budget meant that I had to stick to hair accessories and stationery, rather than clothes and shoes, but I was still pretty pleased with my (tiny) haul. Everyone loves a good bit of stationery, right? I genuinely cannot wait to send a letter in my map envelopes.

This post doesn't even scratch the surface of the shopping opportunities that Berlin offers. I'll definitely be going back to discover more hidden gems!

Four Reasons Why My Grandma Is Awesome

During my recent trip to Manchester, I was incredibly excited to visit B&M Bargains. Was it because the prices are so incredibly low? Or because they have a huge range of crap products that will revolutionalise your life? Well, yes, but it's mostly because of my Grandma's legendary affection for this particular discount retailer. She's originally from Middleton, near Manchester, and every October she used to go back with my Grandad to visit family and, most importantly, visit B&M. These were the days before every town had a Poundland, so my Mum used to give my Grandma a massive list of stuff to track down. She always returned triumphant (approximately 95% of my Christmas presents came from Santa B&M). Why am I telling you this? To illustrate point number one:

1. She is dedicated to sniffing out a bargain. This woman has made bargain hunting into a serious pursuit. Ever since the 99p Store opened it's doors, she had refused to give Poundland a penny of her pension. She used to drive to six different supermarkets on shopping day in order to search out the best deals. She volunteered in a charity shop and regularly made use of her 30% discount when sourcing Christmas and birthday gifts.

2. She has an awesome arsenal of anecdotes. My personal favourite involves her getting splashed with corrosive acid. I'm assuming it's true. Either way, she tells it with confidence.

3. She once bought me a Christmas musical box that featured a rotating Jesus. God's only son span around to the tune of 'We Wish You A Merry Christmas'. See the last sentence of point one.

4. She has a toy boy. He's, like, 73 or something. Whenever any of my friends complain that they're going to be single forever, I remind them that my Grandma found new love at the tender age of 75. All is not lost...

What a legend.

The Cosy Club

Oh, Somerset. I have what can probably best be described as a love/hate relationship with my home county. Although I've always been able to appreciate it's natural beauty, there was a time in my life (from the ages of around 17 to 23) that I was desperate to get away and, for the most part, stay away. I just couldn't stand the small town mentality and complete lack of decent shops/clubs/bus services/any trains whatsoever. (Sorry Mum.) Recently that's changed a bit. I've probably started growing out of my stroppy teenage 'I need to escape' phase, but West Somerset's been doing a bit of changing too. Boutiques, art galleries, and craft shops have started springing up alongside my old favourites of real pubs, fudge shops and tea rooms.

Last time I was in Taunton, we headed to The Cosy Club for lunch on my brother's recommendation. 

The main draw is the decor and atmosphere. Eclectic without being too eccentric, the interiors fall just on the right side of hipster. Slightly surly waiter aside, it really does achieve a welcoming and cosy feel, which is all the more impressive when you consider that it's actually a pretty big place, spread over three floors. 

I really wanted the food to be good, and it was. The tapas was good value and the coronation chicken was uber-chunky, but my personal stamp of approval lands firmly on top of the Cosy Club eggs. We had them with mushrooms, which was yummy, but next time I'll be trying them with salmon. And there will be a next time. Somerset, I'll be visiting again soon, and I am genuinely, wholeheartedly, looking forward to it.