A travel and style blog

Welsh Get Away: A Thatched Cottage, A Sea View & A Really Big Bottle Of Prosecco

What do you think of my new home? Ahem, home for two nights that is. I spent this weekend at Holly House, a beautiful thatched cottage in Llanasa, Wales. The type of house that left me mulling over squatters rites. Exactly what options would I have if I decided to never leave? Ever. 

*Warning: The contents of this post may cause offence to award winning marmalade makers*
Holly House Llanasa Wales. Luxury Cottage

I journeyed with my fella and his family to the remote getaway, for a family birthday bash. Sleeping twelve people, it's the perfect location for a group jaunt. 
Our itinerary consisted of taking in the sea views, from the tranquillity of our under floor heated haven.
With local attractions boasting prize winning pickles and jams, we chose to remain in a cosy Prosecco fuelled haze from within the confines of the luxury cottage. It takes more than an award winning pot of marmalade to make me brave the elements...The local pub however.  

I'd love to make a return trip in the summer. I'm thinking barbeques and jugs of Pimms in the three and a half acres of land. Maybe a stroll to the nearby beach thrown in for good measure.

Wintery weather or not, this place is ideal for escaping from your everyday stresses. Working out how to cook on an Aga will be your only frustration.

An Aga tip from me to you: Warm your red wine by it. You'll feel delightful.

The blogger Gods were smiling down on me when we pulled up at the house. The sun actually shone. For about half an hour. I made a mad dash to take some photos before the wettest and windiest weekend kicked in. 
Sea View From Holly House Wales
Thatched Cottage Front Door
Cottage Kitchen and Aga
Sea View From Holly House Cottage Dining Room

Thanks so much for reading. Hope you've all enjoyed cosy weekends.

Not Your Nine To Five is on Twitter here and Instagram here x x

Elvis At The O2: Photo Diary

Last Friday I hot footed it to the O2 London, to get my best fangirling on and gawp at the largest Elvis exhibition in Europe.
With '360 artefacts specially selected from the Presley family's treasured Graceland Achives'  Christmas came early for me. The exhibition chronicles the rise of Elvis and how he influenced popular culture.
A love for Elvis Presley runs in my family. My sister once took a book on Elvis out of the library and secretly tore out the photo's of him to stick in her personal 'Elvis file,' before casually returning it (on time to avoid any late return fine).
This appreciation for the King of Rock n Roll has filtered down to me, although I've never resorted to vandalism/theft in his name. Yet.

Yes, as a family we're all fans. Except for my Dad, who, according to my Mum, was always a bit jealous. Who can blame him?

Friday at the O2 was a big day. As a test to see how serious my boyfriend really is about me, I brought him along too.

After a moderately heated debate with the love of my life, I point blankly refused to see if our complimentary 'standard' rail tickets were valid for first class travel by plonking ourselves in first class and seeing if we got manhandled back to standard.

One standard rail journey later, we got in tourist mode and decided to get a river taxi which dropped us off a stones throw from the O2. I got snap happy (and a bit damp) on the back deck as we sailed by London's landmarks.

Photos from the day:
View From A River Taxi. London Bridge. The Thames.
Elvis At The O2. Exhibition Leaflet. Elvis Presley.
Elvis Presley Debut Album.
Evis Presley's Personalised Top And Wallet.
Elvis Presley Fan Memorabilia.
Elvis Presley Memorabilia.
Elvis Presley Jailhouse Rock Gold Album.
Elvis At The O2 Exhbition.
Elvis Presley White Jumpsuit. Elvis At The O2 Exhibition.
Elvis Presley White Jumpsuit. Elvis At The O2 Exhibition.
Elvis At The O2. 68 Comeback Special Images.
Elvis Presley 68 Comeback Special. Elvis At The O2.
Elvis Presley's Guitar From 68 Comeback Special.
Elvis Presley TCB Diamond Ring. Elvis At The O2.
Elvis Presley Souvenir. Gift Shop At Elvis At The O2.
The exhibition was lovingly put together. At times, gazing at his iconic white jumpsuits in the dimly lit exhibition room, you could almost feel him there.

Isn't it funny to think he was unsure how his 1968 comeback special would be received by the world. What would he think if he knew, in 2015, generations of fans still love Elvis Presley? That somewhere, on the shelf of a library, sits a suspiciously thin book devoted with love to The King of Rock & Roll.

I should add that on our return train journey home, we did manage to sit in first class. My boyfriend gave me a look that said "See, I told you" and I gave him a look that said "Shut up and pass me a free wine."

Are you a die hard fan of anyone? Come on, whose school reports, house keys, champagne from their wedding night, old outfits would you travel to see...in a non-stalkery sort of way?

Thanks so much for reading. Not Your Nine To Five is on Twitter here and Instagram here x x

If Facebook Had Existed When I Was A Teen: 6 Things That Would've Killed Me

I had the absolute pleasure of going through puberty in pre-social media frenzied days. I'm talking about a time when you had to ring your friends Mum's landline and see if your gal pal was in. When you knew full well that your Mum had "accidentally" picked up the second receiver in the house to have a casual little listen in. You knew because, erm well, you could hear her pick it up.

A time when if you said the boy you fancied had curtains, you weren't talking about the ones at his folks gaff.

As for Facebook. What Facebook? There was no comparing yourself to photographs of other people in your year at school. Cyber bullying consisted of someone logging onto your Encarta MindMaze game and answering questions without your permission.

My world consisted of my close friends (those that I'd exchanged landlines with) and a borderline unhealthy obsession with Leonardo DiCaprio. I was happy with the simple things. A few good pals and a Hollywood hunk. A hunk that WOULD be my boyfriend, if only he'd have a reason to come to Lancashire. I was like a pig in shit with a few Leo posters and a fresh pack of blue tack.

Leonardo Dicaprio, Seventeen Teenage Magazine, Zoella Magazine Cover

Social media today, is a whole other story. I'm in no way the first to talk about the huge part it plays in our daily lives. Checking our Twitter and Facebook newsfeed can be the first thing we do when we wake up and the last thing we do at night.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not bashing social media. I love a good Instagram snoop as much as the next gal. The world is connected like it's never been before. But, there's one thing I'm grateful for...There was no Facebook when I was a teen.

I got to go through my awkward, gangly, confidence lacking years, away from the prying eyes of the world. We all know that things are never as perfect as they seem, but would I have known this as a teen?

Here are the 6 things that would've killed me if I'd been on Facebook as a teen:

1. Photos of the party that the 'popular' girls got invited to. Speaks for itself doesn't it.

2. Seeing that the boy you'd been day dreaming about for the past 6 months was now 'in a relationship.' Thanks a lot for shitting all over my imaginary relationship Facebook.

3. Photos of your questionable outfits.
For an own clothes day at high school, I once teamed a lime green sleeve-less button up blouse with adidas shorts. It did not look good.

4. The confidence killing photos of the popular girls in your year who are definitely not in the late bloomer category.
My legs grew about 12 months before the rest of my body caught up. What would this have made me? A partial bloomer?

5. The period fuelled fall out with your gal pals lasting twice as long after several not so subtle status updates.
"Some people really need to learn to ASK before they borrow a lip gloss"

6. Having to explain going from 'In A Relationship' to 'It's Complicated' within a few hours. My best friend once forced me to ask out a boy I fancied on a school trip. He said yes. I couldn't think of anything to talk to him about. He broke it off that same day.

What makes you think, thank f*ck that never made it on to social media?

Thanks so much for reading. Now, crack on feeding your social media obsessions... Not Your Nine To Five is on Twitter here and Instagram here x x

By the way, it was Leonardo's birthday this week...Happy Birthday my love
Leonardo Dicaprio

If You've Ever Been On An All-Dayer You've Done This

A definition of the infamous All-Dayer: Where a group of friends, usually over excited, convene at a ridiculously early hour and consume an equally ridiculous amount of alcohol. The activity ceases in-line with licensing restrictions only. See also; public humiliation, regret and severe dehydration.

Black heels on bed, Michael Kors handbag, end of all day drinking session

If you've been on an all day drinking session, and survived to tell the tale, chances are you've done the following:

* Started the day with a mammoth sized breakfast to line your stomach before you set
   about drinking your own body weight in Prosecco. Very sensible aren't you.

* Spent ages deciding what to wear. What looks dressy at night but doesn't say slut at 2pm?

* Felt sooo wrong applying a face full of slap when you can still taste the remnants of your full
   English breakfast.

* Accessorised your outfit (you decided on skinny jeans) with a mahoosive handbag so you can fit 
  absolutely every item of makeup you own in. Topping up throughout the day/night is obligatory. Oh
   and perfume for a quick spritz in the loos.

* Left the house at lunch time and felt like EVERYONE on the bus is staring at your heavy
   makeup and judging you. (You could've ordered a taxi but it felt too extravagant)

* Gone to the cash machine and withdrawn far more than you think you'll need, just in case of

* Been stumped for a moment, and only a moment, ordering your first drink. What can I start
  drinking now that won't actually kill me? 

* Felt drunk after two drinks.

* Popped into a newsagent's and realised that yes you definitely are drunk... everyone else in the shop
   definitely isn't.

* Been a little bit sick and then carried on drinking.

* After an exciting Prosecco fuelled high all afternoon, find yourself in a slump, and secretly ready for home by 7pm. You genuinely believe that you've drunk yourself sober.

* God only knows! You suffered from a two hour 'black spot.'
   Why not ask a caring friend to fill in the blank for you here _____________________________

* Bought really gross greasy food and thoroughly enjoyed it.

* Collapsed in bed (hopefully our own) fully clothed.

* Woken up and done a personal belongings check. How much of your 'emergency' fund do you 
   have left? None of it.

Come on now, honest answers only... how many of the above are you guilty of??

Thanks for reading! Have a great week, with all of your personal belongings intact.

If you haven't already come and find me on Twitter here  and Instagram here x x
Professional Blog Designs by pipdig