This morning I was swimming in the bright blue seas of Spartia, not a care in the world and tonight I am here with half our bags (they are still in Kefalonia, we think), stranded in Athens airport for FOUR freaking hours, due to a storm in Rome. Anyway, it has given me a good opportunity to get on the blog, and do some Hotels With Cats scheduling. We launched the site by the waybwith our first ten hotel cats if you’re inclined to check it out! Note to self, I will not plan to launch another website whilst in another country on sporadic wifi.
Kefalonia is another post all together, I am so glad I choose it as my greek island destination. Ginger Hunk and I like to go off the path a little, if something is full of western bars and farang (foreigner) then we freaking hate it. So Kefalonia was chilled, nice and quiet, cheap and full of amazing and beautiful beaches….like the above. It felt like another honeymoon with the new hip, like a fresh start for the rest of forever. Anyway the not so good part of travelling is situations like this, but you know what? It could be worse. Thanks to our capsule packing we actually have all our clothes on us (win!), it is the parachutes that need to take more time to arrive. Continue Reading…
Over the years I’ve become pretty minimalist at everything, including packing. Although I packed pretty light for Bali I took the whole kit and kaboodle of toiletries (including my own pillow). Having said that over six weeks there were still things that I didn’t want to wear, and of course I bought some dresses and lived in them! Packing for Europe is different. We are getting on trains, planes and automobiles and I didn’t want to be carrying a heap of things around with me, getting annoyed life and whining at The Ginger Hunk. We had to pack for summer in Cephalonia and Rome (20 – 30 degrees) and cooler weather in the Dolomites (22 during the day but down to 10 degrees at night). I wanted to pack smart and light but I didn’t want to look like a backpacker because I shall be meeting people and doing Hotels With Cats things. Hence the need for the travel wardrobe overhaul.
I took inspiration at Nikki from Styling You from her capsule wardrobe post about travelling in Europe and did a couple of things in advance. I overhauled my wardrobe and threw out a lot of things that didn’t go with anything, didn’t fit anymore, and bought quality items in a colour scheme from designers that I love, that I knew would LAST and most importantly that I felt GREAT in. *I’m no fashionista by the way. Just your simple, sporty, size 12 woman wanting to be comfortable and look good whilst travelling. As you can see I like stripes, black and grey and I stuck to this in my purchasing plan. Here’s a few things I bought prior to designing my travel wardrobe (no sponsorship here just a public service announcement!). I also bought a few scarves from second hand shops, and some walking shoes from Joya (which are awesome).
Anyhow after the purchase of said items I tried to look at my whole wardrobe as a mix and match feast. No fashion blogger am I said I ever. HOWEVER, I have realised such useful things while packing my travel wardrobe and purchasing clothing in general in recent times that I shall share with you all. Continue Reading…
I’ve been busy burrowing away at my new project and not much time for this blog. I am sorry but I am pleased to report that I am still alive and happy! It’s one of those times in life when everything is going well in writing land and my head is full of creative ideas after a really long slump. My mental health job that I am doing is going great guns (4 days a week), lovely supportive team and I have both trust and creative licence (a nice feeling in a Government job) and I am burning the candle at both ends working on Hotels With Cats, jotting down ideas for my book, and working on a big interesting report. And headed overseas in 11 days. But all good things. Right?
Sometimes you have nothing, and sometimes everything happens all at once. So I have to go with the flow and enjoy it.
So, apparently, Hotels With Cats is turning into a bigger deal than I imagined. And there are so many POSH Hotels With Cats. And so many Hotels With Cats. I’m planning a world trip to basically pet cats in five-star resorts in the next few years. These cats are onto something. I have a clear plan now for my next life. I was aiming to be a cat with a crazy old cat lady but these cats have allowed me to reach for higher goals. Five-star all the way it is.
From left to clockwise around the right in the feature image, we have Cap Maison resort, St Lucia, where a prawn munching cat called Davidson lives, we have Dolphinfish (who might be my favourite look at his feet) from Seawall Apartments Adelaide, Oreo from The Armstrong Hotel in Fort Collins and Skabenga from The Oyster Box in South Africa. Credit to all the hotels for sending me these images with permission to share. And their cat stories! Continue Reading…
I’m a terrible budgeter (although I do manage to save for the things I make a priority). I’m not so good week to week. I thought it was time to get sensible about money. After hearing some recommendations online, I’ve recently devoured “The Barefoot Investor” by Scott Pape and I am super keen to start. If you’re not all over your money and it freaks you out, then I highly recommend you read it. This post isn’t sponsored by the way, just a public service announcement. Pape knows about money. He’s an independent financial advisor and knows first hand what it is like to lose everything. He watched his farm and everything he owned burn down in the Victorian bushfires. But was able to turn to his wife at the time and say “I got this”, and he had. This is the essence of the Barefoot Investor Budget. Pape wants you to be prepared for all possible events, but wants you to have fun too. He asks that you schedule dates to see how you are tracking, and five consecutive ones to get things going. Here are the principles of a Barefoot Budget and how you should allocate your money. Let’s do it.
Expenses = 60% of your income
No more than 60% of your income should be allocated to living expenses (food, accommodation bills). If you’re pushing further than this quota then its going to be hard to do anything. Pape recommends to see a financial advisor if you’re in this situation.
Splurge = 10% of your income
This is fun money. For things like pedicures, drinks at the pub or meals out. I’m pretty good at allocating this. (Too good in fact.) Continue Reading…
I’m going to start this post by saying that I was not best friends with Justine. I did not know her very well. While I grieve, I grieve for the loss for her family, partner and close friends. Justine was part of my Cantoo community. My lifesaving, amazing bunch of Cantoo friends who I love this week more than ever. Cantoo trains people for marathons, half marathons, triathlon and swims. Participants sign up to raise money for cancer research and in turn receive training. I’ve made a bunch of lifelong friends through this group, which can be hard to do in adulthood and it keeps me on the straight and narrow at least for three months per year.
Everyone that does Cantoo is kind of special. Dickheads don’t want to raise money for cancer.
Justine had done a few programs before me, but once you are a Cantooer you always are. Former participants often stay involved to cheer or energy champion other programs. Justine would often turn up to cheer our long runs while we were training for our marathon in the dead of winter. Always smiling like an idiot, on freezing cold days in her UGG boots. She was more excited than us runners. She had lost her mum to cancer years ago, and turned this experience into one of helping and healing others. Some would have gone the other way. She drove us to our race day, more excited than us, who were quietly shitting ourselves in the back. Whether you met her for a second, or several times, she would hug you and bubble over like you were best friends. And it wasn’t fake. This was the type of joyful and caring person that she was. This was further emphasised by the huge turn out at the vigil. She had touched many people throughout her life here and in the US. Continue Reading…
Back in the day, receiving a phone call on the landline caused a sense of wonderment and achievement. We would run to the phone, in the fear that we might miss out on finding out who it was and if we did not answer then the caller identity would remain a mystery forever. I fear that the old phone call, to find out how someone is doing is going way off trend.
We are all busy people these days. I get it. Oh do I get it. On Sunday morning I found myself with some quiet time and I went for a walk. I used this time to call a few people I had not spoken to for a while. Not one person answered the phone. Nor did they call me back by the same means. As it may seem, there are many ways to return a phone call in 2017. The options are confusing. (This post excludes snapchat and twitter because they confuse me.) I shall explain a few ways that you can return a phone call below.
The text message is a fast popular way to return a phone call and requires minimal effort. In fact, over 23 billion text messages are sent each day. It can provide a delay tactic to having the conversation right then (for example “I’m out at lunch, how about I call you in a bit?”) or you can try and have the whole conversation without having a phone call at all (“If this is about Sophie’s baby shower, then I think we should get the blue one. I’ve put $30 in your account“). Either way you can delay the conversation, or the need to have it at all. Risk: Repetitive strain injury.
Similar strategy here to the text messaging above but requires slightly more effort. You will need to log onto Facebook, log into your account, find said friend and send a message. Example: “Hey, missed your call, we are away for the weekend. Speak to you in a bit.” Now this option could go two ways. If you are silent, then it may go in your favour. Your friend may assume that you were indeed busy and got online in his/her busy day to quickly to send this lovely message (lucky friend you are!). But if you are indeed posting trip updates, photos and are Facebooking everywhere all weekend, then you might be caught out for just not being bothered, and get a rude message in return of your own. Risk: Being caught out by not being busy enough.
via GIPHY Continue Reading…