Old Timey Ideas

Hi chums!

I listened to an audiobook recently which talked a lot about how maybe sometimes we should take time away from our phones and computers and social media accounts. At first I thought that this was too idealistic because, really, what else is there to do nowadays other than to look at photos on Instagram of people who are prettier, richer and more talented than ourselves? Isn't that just such a great way to build our self-esteem?


As much as I am a fan of social media, I do enjoy taking some time away from it all. Recently I decided to try to limit the amount of time I spend on my phone, particularly before I go to sleep because I've read that the light from your phone stimulates your brain and makes it harder to fall asleep.

My solution to this problem has been reading. When I was younger I devoured books quicker than the Hungry Caterpillar ate his food. I would buy piles of books from the bookshop and at Christmas when I received a stack of books, I was so excited.

While I was at school I didn't really have much time to read (I'm putting the blame on you, homework!) but now I'm at uni (aka. black hole of time) I've decided that I'm not only going to read, but I'm going to read well known books so that when the sporadic mention of 'To Kill a Mockingbird' comes up, I can jump right into the conversation and look all smart (well, that's the idea anyway!)

Seeing as this is something I want to continue doing, I don't want to put myself off by picking up books that are super old and hard to understand (Shakespeare, you're out), so I've decided to be selective.

As you've might have guessed, the first classic book I read was 'To Kill a Mockingbird' by Harper Lee and I'm now reading Mark Twains 'the Adventures of Tom Sawyer'.

Now when I have lunch, instead of getting out my phone and brainlessly swiping through Facebook, I whip out my book and read a cheeky chapter!

Even though I started this mission only a couple of weeks ago, I already feel better mentally. Not looking at my phone all the time is actually refreshing and also when I had to do a presentation at uni last week I felt that I spoke a lot better, instead of the usual 'so it's like, ummmm.... like when this happens and like...'.

So, I'm not sure how many birds I'm killing with one stone here (not mockingbirds, of course!) but I am feeling super positive about this!

Now wherever I go I always make sure that I have a book on me - and oh my goodness, can I just say, the approving looks you get from the older generation on the train/bus/you name it, when you pull out a book instead of you're phone is just delightful!

A few years ago I went through an 'effective reading' course at school (shiver) and after that I never thought I would recover, but here I am now encouraging you to take a step back in time, away from technology and pick up a book!

I hope you're all having a great week!

Love as always,

Emma
xxx


A Halloween Trip to the Pumpkin Patch

Hi chums!

Halloween marks one of my favourite times of year. It's autumn and the leaves are going golden brown, and it's the first of the Halloween-Bonfire Night-Christmas-New Year celebrations that the end of the year brings.



I've mentioned before on my blog posts that I love to celebrate anything I can and so visiting a pumpkin patch is starting to become a new tradition for me and my family.




We went to a local pumpkin patch around 30 minutes from my house and it did not disappoint! There were so many different types - white pumpkins, orange pumpkin, 'super freak' pumpkins and more!




There was also a pumpkin which had a recipe for Pumpkin Pie written on it which inspired to try making a pumpkin pie of my own (it was too unattractive to post on this blog post though!).





Although we weren't allowed to pick the pumpkins from the patch, we still went to have a look and took plenty of photos!





Halloween is just around the corner but there is still time to go to a pumpkin patch this weekend so I would really encourage you to do some if you have time!




I hope you all have a Happy Halloween!

Love as always

Emma
xxx

A Visit to Gaudí's Casa Batlló

Hi chums!

When we woke up on Saturday morning to blue sky I was so happy! We had a lot on our list that we wanted to do but after a leisurely breakfast we decided to start with Casa Batlló.


Casa Batlló is a building which was redesigned by Gaudí in 1904 and although is has been refurbished many times since, it remains one of his masterpieces and a popular place to visit for tourists.


I learnt that this house is also known as the 'House of Bones' because of it's skeletal look from the outside.

The building is so impressive, with beautiful mosaics covering the outside of the house walls.




Inside the house there were beautiful stained glass windows and there were almost no straight lines, something Gaudí is known for.




Half way round the house there is a terrace so you can step outside and looks at some more amazing mosaics and sculptures.






In the middle of the house there is a room covered in blue tiles. From the stairs, you can look straight up to the roof or down to the ground floor.





At the top of the house, there are views of Barcelona which are absolutely amazing.



The actual structure of the rooftop terrace includes lots of strange shapes and more mosaics. A common theory is that the structure (shown in both the picture above and below) looks like the back of a dragon.



There are strings of lights everywhere and I can only imagine how beautiful it must look at night when all these lights are turned on.




Casa Batlló is a must, if you visit Barcelona. If you book online, you don't have to wait in the queues outside so I would definitely recommend doing that!

More Barcelona blog posts are still to come so watch out for that!

I hope you are having a fab weekend!

Love as always

Emma
xxx



A Rainy Afternoon in La Boqueria

Hi chums!

If you read my last post, you'll know that I went to Barcelona a few weeks ago and I have to say it was amazing!

Barcelona has been on my list to go to for the last few years. I've seen countless pictures on Pinterest and Instagram and was so excited I got the opportunity to go.


This was a super last minute trip - we literally booked it on a Wednesday and flew there on the Friday. I love a good spontaneous trip so I was ready!


When we arrived unfortunately the weather was doing its best to imitate England's classic drizzle. Although we were disappointed the sun wasn't shining, we still wanted to make the most of every second we were there so we went to an indoor market on La Rambla called La Boqueria.



This market is an abundance of peppers, oils, meat, sweets, nuts, cheese, bread and every other kind of food known to man. I personally tried to steer clear of the fish section because the smell was beyond revolting.



I could have picked up a loooot of food from this market (not fish) but seeing as we were going out for tapas later, we restricted ourselves.





La Boqueria was really fun to go round and it was the perfect thing to do in the rain, as Barcelona doesn't have a tonne of things to do inside, so I was grateful that this was our only rainy day.

More Barcelona blog posts are to come very soon!

Love as always,

Emma
xxx

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