Sydney- Things To Do During Winter

10 THINGS TO DO DURING WINTER:

1) Carriageworks Winter Night Market – $10 per ticket, over 50 choices of bars & restaurants, live music and cooking demonstrations. (Friday 19th July 5pm)

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2) Winterlight Parramatta – Roughly $20 per ticket, includes carnival rides, hot snacks, mulled wine & ice skating. (Saturday 1st June until Saturday 31st August)

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3) Bondi Winter Magic – $22 per ticket, Ice skating rink with views of Bondi Beach & a Ferris Wheel in the background. (Friday 28th June until Sunday 28th July, 10am- 9pm daily)

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4) Apollo 11 Powerhouse Museum – $15 per ticket with entry into Museum, exhibition of the moon landing and the 50th anniversary. (Until July 2020)

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5) Paddy’s Night Food Markets, Flemington – FREE EVENT – Food markets held in a undercover carpark which includes more than 25 food trucks & stalls, live music and vintage cars. (Saturday July 6th until Saturday 3rd August)

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6) The Rocks Christmas in July Markets – FREE EVENT – Christmas themed markets which French chalets to give it a Bastille vibe. (Thursday July 11th until Sunday 14th July)

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7) Cockatoo Island Camping – Pricing depends on package but can range from $89 per night, Waterfront campground with views to Sydney’s Harbour, includes picnic spots, BBQ facilities & cafes / restaurants. (Open all year around)

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8) Winery Glamping @ Surry Hills – Bohemian themed hideaway with luxe and cosy glamping tents, can book up to 9 people which includes various packages startig from $59 each. Has boho eating with Instagramable surroundings. (Friday June 14th until Saturday 31st August)

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9) Holey Moley – Price depends on option of mini golf course. Karaoke & Mini Golf with drinks & cocktails on offer which turns into the craziest round of golf you will ever remember. (Open all year around)

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10) The Grounds of Alexandria – FREE EVENT – This is one of my favourite spots within Sydney, no matter what the season they always have a large variety of upcoming events. Check out their “Whats On” section of their website for all their themed events & most are free which is a bonus. (Open all year around)

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I hope you enjoyed this list of events and activities happening within Sydney over the winter period. I hope they have helped give you ideas on where to explore over the next few months.

SYDNEY BLOGGERS, JUNE 19

Hello everyone and welcome back to my blog!!

I organised a blogger meetup within Sydney on Saturday 8th June and I thought I would share a blog post on the lead up, how I planned it and how it all went.

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Firstly I’m still feeling so over whelmed with the response because this is something I had thought of for a few months and was a huge goal of mine. Now it’s happened and it’s out there it feels so surreal that I actually reached it.

I want to explain that if you have a dream or goal make sure to get it out there and never doubt yourself, yes it’s not easy but what is???

THOUGHTS:

I had done a lot of research as I was trying to actually connect with other bloggers within Sydney but always struggled to find a group or community where we could meet up and network. I know it’s very popular back where I’m from in Belfast, Ireland and within Australia there are groups across Melbourne & Brisbane but not in Sydney (strangely).

Thoughts started running through my head were I would question myself, is this something I could start? Obviously it was going to be difficult but who doesn’t love a challenge?

I then visualised this almost everyday and would sit at my desk in work writing notes upon notes about where I was going to have the venue / location, how many people I could cater for and wondered how many people would actually be interested in this idea. After a few days I started to believe I could do this as its something I enjoy and I’m passionate in. I wanted bloggers to have the ability to network / collab with other talented bloggers.

PLANNING:

My first step was to create a Meetup community which majority of Aussies use to connect through different groups within their local area. Within first few days I had roughly 20 members join which I then thought, wow that’s a possible 20 people already who could attend my event.

I then met up with 2 bloggers that I have connected with over Instagram for over a year but this was the first time we actually met each other in person. To meet each other in Sydney and have the opportunity to share my idea and also to hear their passions and ideas as bloggers, was amazing. We all loved and supported each other’s ideas which then motivated me more to go ahead and start seriously planning my blogger meet up.

PREPARATION:

I give myself 4 weeks to plan as I had a deadline to reach before my closest friend left the city to go do her regional work. She had told me that she wanted to be there and support me which was an amazing touch for it being the first time I had ever planned an event.

My first priority was to find a venue and within the city of Sydney it’s very expensive to hire. As this was the first time I had ever organised an event and had to search for a venue, I didn’t want to put myself out of pocket.

After a weekend of visiting different cafes throughout different areas of Sydney I had to decide on a location that was close to public transport, had parking facilities and was easy to get too for everyone attending.

I personally love Glebe within Sydney, it’s got a cool vibe and it’s quite central too. I knew this was where I was going to locate the event but I still had to find the perfect venue to accommodate everyone’s needs with the correct seating so that everyone could hear/ see me speak throughout the event and also have a wide variety of food options too.

I visited numerous cafes around the Glebe area, until one stood out for me which was Otto Noorba this was because the owner was so welcoming and came across very accommodating. Mary reassured me that she would happily cater for me + 30 others and assist with anything I needed, in which this would be to have half of her restaurant reserved so that everyone was seated together. Mary has a strong passion for her business and didn’t request a huge upfront fee to reserve the tables needed, were as other cafes were requesting this. I did expect these fees/ charges but first time around I didn’t want to put myself out of pocket until I seen how successful the event went then I can worry about fees for future events when I don’t mind paying out as I know there is a huge potential.

I knew instantly this was the venue, as I walked away feeling so relaxed and felt this would be an easy location for people to also be able to access on the day. Next I needed  to get the event out there, so I started the promotion work and advertised the event. I created the event promo on “Canva” myself. I played around with this app for awhile until I was happy with the look, font, style and photos selected to make it unique and also stand out.

I then reached out to Gemkenblog and asked Gemma to come and speak about her success as a Travel / Lifestyle blogger who is also a fellow Irish girl. I have followed Gemma’s travel journey and she inspires many to come out here to Australia. I felt she would be perfect to speak about how she started her blog and how she directs traffic as she recently reached her goal of 10K Instagram followers.

I also reached out to a photographer which I came across on Instagram called Ben Douglas he is a Sydney photographer who does a lot of collaborations with bloggers and influencers. I scrolled through his feed and loved his work, so decided he could possibly attend and snap shots of this all happening which I could then use to promote future events.

SPONSORS:

My next step was to research local businesses who could possibly sponsor my event and this would also help their business progression too. I have a strong passion in helping others and although I love meeting others, I love to also help those that I know too. I communicated with a company called Barette du Jour which I came across when attending Glebe Markets one Saturday morning. My other ideas for possible sponsors were girls that I know through Instagram who are extremely passionate in what they do.

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Wearing Barrette du Jour

I reached out to these girls and they loved the idea in participating and providing small discount codes for the attendees to get off their work. You can access their pages and contact them through the following links:

Sara Dolan Makeup

Hair by Sarah Gething

Nauti Yoga with Sarah Frank

PROMOTING THE EVENT:

My next step was to announce the event online. I done this via my personal Instagram emmajanecraig_x and also created a Sydney Bloggers page on Instagram. I felt this would be the best way to promote the event as I connect with a lot of bloggers through the use of Instagram and through the use of the Instagram hashtag tool this would spread the word too. I then created a page for the event and released the tickets via Eventbrite as I find this also to be a very strong tool to promote & manage any event.

Event promo created on Canva

I decided that 30 people would roughly be a good figure to have attend the first event as I also didn’t want to put too much pressure on myself either for publicly speaking for the first time. After everything was confirmed from Special Guest GEMKENBLOG , photographer Ben Douglas and all the sponsors I was good to go ahead and announce the event live.

I began to reach out to all the bloggers I know within Sydney through the use of my social media and also the members on the Meet Up group to make everyone I know was aware of the upcoming event.

LEAD UP:

Once the event went live, I began to already receive such a positive response. So many people reached out and said they were so excited for this to be actually happening in Sydney and couldn’t wait to attend. The first half of the tickets were gone within a week and I honestly woke up everyday so grateful that I was receiving this feedback as this was a dream I had thought about for awhile and it kept my energy high.

The whole lead up was very exciting and I loved the whole idea of planning and being super busy as there really is so much background work involved but it give me more motivation when I knew the event had such an massive interest too. I spent endless evenings after work in my local library typing and editing the schedule on how the event was going to run throughout the morning and I also created a small activity in order to break the ice / make people feel more relaxed about who they were sitting beside for the duration of the event.

I then began preparing items for the goodie bags. I know the event was free and I didn’t have too in any way spend but I  wanted the guests to be as impressed as possible and I felt like it would be a nice touch to provide them with small freebies. I bought the little brown bags and personalised “Sydney Bloggers” stickers on Etsy which is my go to for any creative need.

The most important part of event was in my eyes how it was going to run and what was going to be discussed as I want everyone to feel like they had spent quality time out of their Saturday morning. I wanted the event to run smoothly and to be structured as I didn’t want the event to be too long or too short. All this was going to be controlled by myself which was the most scariest part of the whole planning / hosting process as I learnt how to really manage time effectively.

FEELINGS & EMOTIONS:

The day before the event, all tickets were gone…. 30/30 which is an incredible result!! I had worked a 12 hour shift and felt exhausted but I had to maintain a good energy and mood as I knew I still had so much preparations to do. I had to not only prepare my speech but also pamper, do my hair & tan etc. You girls understand. I firstly sat down and began writing a speech, I wrote a good few paragraphs and then thought this was not a good way to memorise what I was wanting to talk about. I felt this could possibly lead to me rambling on too much and focusing too much on one topic more than another. I then decided the best solution for this was to just write down key words and from these words I would know what exactly I wanted to talk about and would be talking fluently rather than staring at a piece of paper.

It was difficult to prepare yourself for public speaking as I had never done this before but I listened to many podcasts which motivated me that its possible for anyone to do this, if they put their mindset to it. I practised my speech around 4 times, 1 was the morning before the event before I jumped into my Uber. Although it was only talking to my partner and not 30 + people, he still managed to keep me calm and reassured me that it sounded great. I also highly recommend meditation, recently I started to get at least 5 minutes in a day and it honestly helps your mind and body so much.

The morning of the event it just felt like a normal day to be honest. I began getting ready doing my makeup / hair then caught an Uber and arrived to the venue 30 minutes before the event start time to set up. The tables were already laid out exactly how I wanted them to be but I just had to place water on the tables and set up the goodie bags where each person would be seated.

When I arrived to the venue and got everything set up, my nerves then started to kick in and I was shaking so much but I just tried to remain calm with my breathing and drank lots of water. When my bestie arrived and I sat chatting to her, it helped whilst I awaited on everyone arriving.

HOW DID IT GO??

As I had a schedule and knew roughly how I was going to begin the event it made it a little easier. I firstly welcomed each guest with a warm hug as this is how I love to be greeted and made sure everyone found a seat, grabbed a goodie bag and also signed in through a registration sheet this way I could contact them easily after the event and also know who exactly attended.

I awaited roughly 20 mins for everyone to arrive, get seated and browse the cafe menu. Once everyone seemed comfortable and relaxed, I then began to interrupt and try get everyone’s attention which was very nerve wrecking as I didn’t have a microphone and also I could see all the guests didn’t hear me greatly as they were chatting amongst each other so I had to control this without shouting also.

Once I had everyone’s attention I then started by going through the goodie bags and getting everyone to pull out the communication task which was inside the bag. I explained how I answered mine and asked everyone to work on this over the next couple of moments then we would go around the table by sharing our answers. This way we would get to know each other a bit better and it would relax the room too. I felt this task was very successful and worked in getting to know one another and we learnt what type of blogger each of us are.

I then moved on to introducing myself, my background as a backpacker travelling from Ireland- How travel has impacted and changed my life. How I started my blog and have now became passionate about sharing my good & bad experiences through the use of my blog to help others. I explained my blogging tips that I have learnt over the last year which involve staying creative/ unique, expanding your knowledge of the platform your using by reaching out to others who are using the same platform, how I direct traffic to my blog and then I concluded my speech with mindset and positivity as I believe its so important to surround yourself with others who have the same passions and interests therefore you can push each other to your highest, otherwise you aren’t going to continue to grow and as a blogger you need to keep growing.

I spoke for roughly 30 – 45 minutes then GEMKENBLOG spoke about her blogging tips and how she directs traffic to her blog. Gemma shared some real quality tips which involved to stay consistent as your followers want to see what you are doing and want to keep up to date with your day to day experiences so if your only being active now and again they will unfollow as this is not want people want to see. Gemma discussed as a WordPress user also that she makes sure when publishing a blog post to tag every single category of the post as this will direct people from search engines when they type in specific words which may be included this way your post will be shown on google etc.

Gemma spoke about how certain posts that she has published have done better than she may have thought and said that if you think something seems so small or silly it actually isn’t as it can go a long way in helping others. As a traffic controller Gemma released a blog post on how she done her course and got her cards to get into traffic controlling, this ended up being very successful as it helped many other girls throughout Australia get into traffic controlling.

We then ended by having the last 30 minutes – 1 hour of networking and I answered any questions I got hit with, the best I possibly could. I then went around the table speaking to every guest and hearing their feedback was incredible. Everyone was so thankful and grateful for me to have organised this event and people explained how they have learnt at least 1 thing from attending- this was an amazing feeling!! People then started questioning the next event and how often I wanted these meet ups to run. I honestly couldn’t believe the response and I’m so estatic that I actually hit my goal by creating a small community of like minded people and we can continue to grow and network through the use of these meet ups within Sydney.

I’m so proud of myself that I took this risk and everything I visualised happened – CRAZYYYYYY!! I also am so happy that the event ran smoothly and just exactly how I scheduled it to go. I myself as the host learnt many key tips from others and its great that I impacted others by sharing my background and tips too. If you be yourself and share your story, honestly it will work and go along way!

After the event I celebrated with close friends and cherished this moment of happiness! It felt strange that it was over as overall I honestly loved the planning and lead up as I enjoy being busy and keeping my mind occupied. A few days on I then created a Survey on SurveyMonkey. I felt this was the best way to gather everyone’s feedback and see what each person thought went well and what could of been improved, this will help plan future events.

Once I received our photographer’s shoots after a few days of the event – I literally cried with happiness as they are all natural photos of everyone literally having a great time! That evening after work I sat at my desk with my laptop and started to create a newsletter for the attendees as I felt this was the best way to stay as a community and have the ability to stay connected.  I also had never done this before but I gave it my best shot and researched that MailChimp was the most popular. I created a Newsletter within an hug, pure chuffed haha. I attached some of my favourite shots and thanked everyone for attending and that I would provide any future updates & events through the use of this monthly newsletter.

As I’m currently on my holidays visiting Ireland I haven’t had too much time to begin the next event but that will be happening soon, I just have a pretty tight schedule at the moment with a lot of exciting stuff coming up!

I can’t wait to start planning the next event, which I know will be bigger and better. I can’t wait to see more new faces and continue to expand this community of bloggers throughout Sydney. If you didn’t get to attend the first event don’t worry there will always be another chance, just make sure to follow our social media page and subscribe to our monthly newsletter as I will be emailing all updates through this. Check out my personal social media to keep up with my daily journey and tips too emmajanecraig_x.

I want to thank all of you who have read this post and I hope this has motivated you that if you want something you can easily do it, all you got to do is put your mind to it and believe in YOURSELF.

I look forward to sharing my next blog post which will be all about my journey visiting home after 15 months.

Lots of Love,

EmmaInWanderland xo

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

SELF CARE

Hello everyone and welcome back!!

I felt the need to come on and do a short post because I felt real SHIT today and I feel it’s good to express this as mentioned before not everyone is living a perfect life and just because their Instagram or social media portrays they are happy doesn’t mean they genuinely are.

Today I had a strange day with weird emotions (weird is good right). I felt exhausted and just like I haven’t had a break lately to myself. Since January from I have arrived back to Sydney I have been super hectic with getting back into work, settling in my apartment, getting new house mates, getting back into normality and just finding that balance of life again.

I have struggled with stress overload more so lately from what I have dealt with but I see these situations as learning curves and it’s good to change scenery, change routine, change hobbies, change friends. This will bring out the best in you and once you change small things bigger things will come.

Past couple of weeks I have been rushed off my feet planning for a lot of stuff coming up over the next couple of months and I honestly didn’t plan most of it so it’s kind of just hit me in the face unexpectedly but I feel like that’s how good things always plan to happen lol. I’m honestly grateful that these opportunities have reached my direction and I’m more so happy within myself that I have accepted them, even though they have all kind of timed to happen at once haha.

If you don’t take up on these opportunities you may never get a chance for them again.

Also at the beginning of this week it kick started with me hitting 2K followers on my Instagram!!! Woohooo I’m bloody so hyper that this small but big achievement has happened in such small amount of time as although my blog started a year ago when I began my travels, it hasn’t really kicked off until January after farm work until I had more time to put 100% effort in.

Since then I have been putting in a lot of my time as I can see the potential I have to help & inspire people. Recently I received a lot of messages about how I have inspired people to take risks and live their dreams because my blog explains I have done this. This makes my heart so happy, knowing little old me has helped people and then can only get better, right?!

I want to thank everyone of you who has supported me whether it be the last year or recently because you have helped me become more confident and have helped me find passion in writing and sharing my experiences.

To thank you all, I’m sharing a free give away/ competition with lots of amazing goodies next Friday 24th May. Make sure to enter and good luck in advance!! 🎁

Anyway let’s get to the point. I tried all afternoon to speak on my story on insta and I just wasn’t in the right mind set so I was like okay it is important to say how I feel so instead I will do a blog post.

So today I realised and thought to myself…When was the last time I took time off and chilled?! I actually couldn’t remember. After farm work I had no break I was straight into temp jobs & ever since I have been crazy busy. Weekends are my only time off work but I never sit down, most of my friends always say I like to get every hour in out of the day?! Haha

Something just hit me today where I was like gosh I need some self time, took the night off the gym and came home to new PJs, fluffy socks & dressing gown. Sat down with a cup of tea and reflected on how important it is to have these important moments.

We all live super busy lifestyles and don’t get me wrong I love being busy and keeping my mind productive but you need to have self care time where you stop, take a break and relax. If you don’t remind yourself to do this, is anyone else going to pat you on the shoulder and remind you???

My skin has broke out lately and I spent the evening pampering myself and now I feel so refreshed. Please take a day or week every so often if you don’t already to just rest and look after your own mind. You need to escape your busy bubble and do this or it could really start to affect your mood & you may become sad or get anxiety.

I attended a workshop last night in North Sydney held through One Eighty. Check out their page for anyone interested in future events!

The workshop was focused on 14-24 year olds and it was based on Healthy Mind/ Healthy Body. I travelled 2 hours from work to attend this event by myself but I was super excited!! The ladies who ran the event were bloody amazing and covered everything I wanted to hear.

They discussed how certain foods can affect your skin, gut & mood. Also they discussed mental health on how you need to have boundaries for people who aren’t doing you any favours, so if your in someone’s company who you feel isn’t impacting you in a positive way that you want them too. Then cut them, you don’t need them and we need to learn to say no. If we don’t we go around on this cycle and are just constantly going to be dealing with the same situation or person.

We were made to write down 5 things that we as individuals think we are and the person next to us as had to write down 5 things they also thought you were. You then had to compare what you thought you were and what your friend thought you were and see if there was a difference. As I was alone I began writing a few words nervously because we never really stop and think what we think we are to others. A girl behind me pay me on my arm and said “I think you are independent”, I literally just became a ball of emotions and was like wow this is so kind and really meant so much to me.

Although I have been in a relationship for almost 7 years I still love my alone time to meet new people and have the independency to attend events without that fear of being alone. If you don’t and your constantly in your partners company it isn’t good for your mind, you need to stay open to others and be free to have fun. When you do you will attract good energy, in which I did I met 2 beautiful girls who started chatting to me, give me a lift to the bus stop and showed they cared. Little things like this make me so happy!!

Another thing I learnt was that one of the ladies explained how through her teenage years she listened to her parents and other family members around her tell her “she should” be doing this or “she should” being doing a certain course to get a certain job. At the time and because she was so young she listened but she took action and then after many years realised she done something because others influenced her to go down this path when she didn’t particularly want to.

She has since left this career and is living a completely different lifestyle which she thought she should be living and not want others dictated that she should be living. I think this is very important that only you, yourself can make these big decisions and don’t let someone tell you what you should be doing and expect that to be what will make you truely happy because it won’t.

I hope this blog post has helped a little and will give you a reminder for self care and to check in on yourself every once in awhile. Chill, relax then continue doing your thing!! 💥

Thank you for reading lovelies, remember my competition is being announced on my Instagram next Friday.

Lots of love,

EmmaInWanderLand 😘

DARKNESS INTO LIGHT 2019

Hi everyone and welcome back to my blog!!

I thought I would do a short blog post about Darkness into Light as it is coming up next week and I’m taking part in order to raise funds to help prevent suicide and self harm.

Some of you may not know what this is or have ever heard of Darkness into Light before so I will start by giving you a short intro.

What is Darkness into Light???

On May 11th hundreds and thousands of people around the world in over 16 countries participate and come together to walk from the darkness of the night into the light of the morning to help the global fight against suicide and self harm.

The 5km walk represents the therapeutic counselling journey. This shows the importance of mental health and well being in all our lives as individuals.

All entry fees raised from around the world go towards Pieta House and international charity partners such as PIPS Charity based on Antrim Road, Belfast.

Local Charities…

PIPS provide support to locals who are considering or may have at some point considered ending their own life. They also provide support to local families & friends who may have been touched by suicide.

What is Pieta House???

Pieta House provides one to one counselling to people suffering from suicide ideation and engaging in self game or those who bereaved by suicide.

Last year in 2018, Pieta House helped almost 7,500 people.

I feel extremely excited to participate in the walk which I will doing next Saturday from Bondi Beach at 5am, hopefully I see some familiar faces!

Ormeau Park Belfast is the venue for Belfast so if you are interested in participating please do so by registering via Darkness into Light’s website: https://www.darknessintolight.ie/our-charity-partners#Lump11561

Participating in the walk and knowing I am making a real and measurable difference especially for my own country whilst doing this event on the other side of the world, is actually quite emotional as the suicide figures back home are so high. It was frightening how often there was a suicide announced on social media back home so just imagine the ones that also happen but don’t get shared on social media.

Every 40 seconds a person dies by suicide

Suicide is a major health issue which devastates families and communicates. Thoughts of suicide or suicidal behaviour can be triggered by a single event or a series of events over time.

Suicide and self harm can be linked to many life problems which leads to feelings of hopelessness & despair such as:

  • Trauma of abuse
  • Poverty
  • Money / debt problems
  • Unemployment
  • Drug/ alcohol misuse
  • Social isolation
  • Pool social conditions/ homelessness
  • Violence
  • Family/ relationship problems
  • Previous suicide attempt
  • Family/ friend history of suicide
  • Imprisonment

I read online, people within Northern Ireland experience 20- 25% higher levels of mental health illness when compared to the rest of the UK.

There are significantly a lot higher levels of depression, antidepressant prescription rates and higher incidences of self harm within Northern Ireland.

Northern Ireland also has the highest rate of suicide within the whole of the UK.

Figures have proven that women are more likely to self harm & attempt suicide, whilst men are three times more likely to die by suicide.

I hope everyone reading this can kindly help out by registering to do the walk in an area close to you as this will go along way in helping out your local community.

Also for anyone who would like to show their support towards me participating you can make a donation through my PayPal link which will be sent to Pieta House Ireland and this will allow them to continue to deliver their vital services. £2, or even 50p can go an awful long way so please help out as much as you possibly can.

My fundraising link is below:

https://paypal.me/emmainwanderland?locale.x=en_GB

If you follow me on my Instagram emmajanecraig_x , check out for updates where I will show you all photos of the walk and the journey.

Thanks so much for reading and thanks in advance for anyone who helps out by either participating around the world in the walk or helps me fundraise.

Lots of love,

EmmaInWanderLand 💛

NEGATIVITY VS POSITIVITY

Hello and welcome back to my blog!!

I’ve been feeling very motivated and inspired lately and got a few things I wanted to share so I thought the best thing to do would be by a blog post.

As most of you are aware there are good & bad sides to social media. Few reasons to why I want to keep my Instagram feed & blog unique is because it can get so competitive and nasty. I dislike when people copy others and don’t be their own individual, some people think their lives need to be based on others.

Yes fair enough we all have atleast one person who we can think of as our inspiration and we admire every move or action they make and see no wrong in this person. That’s fine. It’s great to be inspired by atleast one person and look up to them as a little motivation.

Although I don’t agree on comparing yourself based on what you have or own to what others have or how you look to how they look. You have to be unique and love you in your own skin, give yourself that confidence boost by doing what genuinely makes you happy, have a hobby, have fun and then you will start glowing.

A few tips to get rid of those negative vibes is to unfollow/delete the people of your feed that are knocking your confidence or are not doing you any favours. Once you de clutter you will notice a change in your mood and when scrolling through your feed you won’t get annoyed.

Travelling has honestly opened up my eyes to many new things and looking over the past year since I have left home. I know I have become a stronger & more confident person.

I have motivated myself so much and have opened up many opportunities that I never knew would once be an option. I never doubt any thought or action, I always believe there will be a good outcome.

When travelling you meet so many different people which gives you a real eye opener and teaches you many life lessons. I always think back to school and how during education no one ever taught you how to deal with difficult situations or people that you may approach throughout life.

Some of you may agree but I have actually taught myself so many techniques by listening to podcasts and I feel like Tony Robbins is apart of my life. This man has totally opened up my eyes to many different situations that I have been hit in the face with previously but never knew how to deal with them, now I’m like wow wait I know exactly how to handle this.

Tony Robbins has taught me that anything life throws at you, happens for a reason. A negative situation arises. Okay get a pen and piece of paper and write down all the positives and negatives. I can promise you there will be atleast 1 positive outcome and you will take that to overcome the bad. When the situation passes over you will look back in days, weeks, months or years and laugh and say well that happened actually because of ……..

Back to where I mentioned that social media can be good and bad. This is also because there is always a lot more good mentioned than there is bad. Now let’s be realistic we all don’t live in a fairytale. Every now and again, we have real issues where we want to have a chat about or need a shoulder to cry on. These things never get shared it’s just always pictures of happy smiles and the sadness is left behind closed doors invisible of the public eye which portrays us to be humans that were not.

As most of you may know I’m currently living in Sydney, Australia. On my feed you all probably think wow she’s living the absolute dream…YES I AM!!! But that doesn’t mean my life doesn’t involve sad or stressful times that you can’t see.

For anyone who doesn’t already know the cost of living is very high within most cities in Australia and most people house share to cut this expense. When I first came out to Oz, I was honestly abit weary as I have never experienced this before and never knew what to expect. Obviously you don’t know anything until you take that risk and attempt it.

Our first year visa we lived with 2 Dutch guys which was fine. Guys are pretty relaxed and have that laid back attitude. Now into our second year visa we decided to live with 2 friends who we have known since we first hit Australia.

Previously living with guys I was so excited to have that little bit of home comfort & have girl time. As soon as we moved in together, I learnt to realise this was not a good idea. Everyday coming home from work I was utterly frustrated with many things.

As friends we had many conversations which involved agreeing and disagreeing about certain situations. Obviously this lead to awkwardness as being friends and having to discuss money, bills and serious things can make there become a strange vibe.

Everyone has their own problems & issues but one thing I don’t agree on is rubbing these onto someone else. Everyday coming home from work I would of heard negativity like I hate Sydney, I want to go home, there’s nothing to do here, I’m bored, I’ve no money, I want to leave.

When your surrounded by people who have a negative attitude or approach to certain things it can totally affect you as a person. I love Sydney, I absolutely love everything about it. Fair enough there’s people who may of came out here and realise that it’s not for them but they can’t rub this attitude on people who do actually enjoy being here.

Smaller things become bigger things. One thing leads to another and when there’s an awkwardness especially in your own home where your suppose to be relaxed and feel comfortable, it’s not a pleasant feeling.

I was coming home from work everyday to my bedroom. I got myself in this terrible rut where I knew if I left my room I would be faced with this huge awkwardness and I wanted to avoid that. I ended up never being home and would of went to the gym until very late to avoid being in the house.

I personally hate drama and confrontation so I felt like this was the best way to avoid the situation as I knew it wasn’t going to get any better until 1 day a bombshell came and our landlord texted me to make me aware the people would be leaving in a week. I automatically thought how can they do this, we haven’t got anyone to replace them for their side of the bills nor have we discussed the situation or how am I going to be able to afford full rent.

We then attempted to talk about this which made the situation worse as they couldn’t see no wrong. I didn’t mind if they made me aware as we were once friends and said I’m not happy I’m leaving we will attempt to get replacements for our share of the rent but no these people did not care about my feelings nor did they care me and my partner where going to be left to pick up the pieces.

I was totally upset by the situation as I thought they could have handled it in a much mature matter by not being sneaky and making decisions behind my back. However this has now taught me not to put 100% faith and trust into everyone you meet. This has now made me have higher standards for people I have to live with which isn’t fair on others. I just don’t want to be put in this situation ever again as it was totally horrible and caused extreme stress within my relationship as we both have to find time to do viewings and find new people to live with.

Speaking with a few friends who are travelling I have learnt to hear the same happen to them where they have realised it’s not a good idea to live with friends as it tears the friendship apart.

Looking at the situation now I have more positive outcomes listed than I do negatives as I know if that situation was permanent or had of lasted longer than it did. It would of started to affect me more as a person and may of lead to major unhappiness. Now a massive weight has been lifted, since then I have been extremely happy and many good things have opened up for me. I now look forward to the next people we live with and hope our home will be a much happier, positive environment.

I didn’t know about sharing this although I feel it’s very useful for people wanting to travel or for anyone who is planning on coming out to Australia and aren’t aware of having to house share or what it can be like.

Thanks so much for reading, I hope this may have helped some of you.

Lots of love,

EmmaInWanderLand 💓

Sydney Food & Drink

Hi guys and welcome back to my blog. I have received a lot of requests asking where the best places are to eat & drink in Sydney so I thought I would do a short little blog post to help you guys out.

Here are some of my favourite recommendations.

Brunch…

  • The Tiny Giant, Petersham
  • Social Hideout Cafe, Parramatta
  • The Grounds of Alexandria
  • Basket Brothers, CBD
  • XS Espresso, Parramatta
The Grounds of Alexandria

Lunch…

  • Tea Gardens, Bondi Junction
  • Little Chinese Kitchen, CBD Westfield food court
  • Guzman y Gomez
  • Milky Lane – Bondi Beach, Parramatta, Cronulla, Coogee, Crows Nest
  • Thirsty Bird, CBD
  • Burgers & Beers, Manly
  • Smoky Sue’s Barbecue, CBD
  • Big Daddy’s Burger Bar- Newtown, Darlinghurst, Redfern, Liverpool
  • Vecino, CBD
  • Peanut Butter Jelly, Manly
  • Betty’s Burgers, CBD
  • North Bondi RSL
Big Daddy’s Burger Bar, Newtown

Dinner…

  • Rosso Pomodoro Pizzeria, Balmain
  • Doughbox Diner, Brighton- Le-Sands
  • Cafe Del Mar, CBD
  • Lola Cocina Spanish Restaurant, Crows Nest
  • Searock Grill, Harbor views
  • The East Chinese Restaurant, Harbor views
  • Opera Kitchen
  • P.J. O’Briens- Sunday Roast, CBD
  • Hard Rock Cafe, Darling Harbor
  • Cafe Sydney, Harbor views
  • Epic Pizza, Darlinghurst, Enmore
  • Quay Restaurant, Harbor views
  • Bare Grill on Bourke, CBD
  • Chinatown
Searock Grill, Harbor

Drinks…

  • Bondi Icebergs
  • Pier One, CBD
  • Carter Bar, CBD
  • Ivy Pool Club, CBD
  • Opera Bar
  • Grandma’s Bar, CBD
  • 360 Bar & Dining, Sydney Tower
  • East Village Sydney, Darlinghurst
  • Hacienda Sydney, Harbor views
  • The Star Sydney, CBD
  • Marquee, The Star
  • Glenmore Hotel, The Rocks
  • Coogee Pavilion
  • Zeta Bar, CBD

360 Bar & Dining, Sydney Tower

I hope you enjoyed my blog post and found a few places where you would like to dine and enjoy a drink.

Regional Work – 2nd WHV

Hi guys and welcome back to my blog. I’ve been trying to post this blog for the past few weeks but I’ve just been so busy with getting settled and back into routine since I arrived back to Sydney!

On my last post I mentioned I would be heading to do my 3 months regional work for my second year visa so on this post I’m going to talk about my experience and give you lots of advice for those who are interested in staying in Oz for another year.

I received so many DMs from people on Instagram interested in where I did my farm work, my thoughts on it & advice so I hope this blog helps all you out!! I’m extremely grateful for your messages because I try to help as many people as possible with my experience.

Where???

I arrived around the end of October to Innisfail which is roughly 1 hour outside of Cairns. I stayed at Innisfail Budget Backpackers Hostel which is a working hostel so you stay there and they provide you with the work. Luckily I arrived on a Saturday and started my work on the Monday morning so it was great to get stuck in straight away with no hanging around.

Innisfail, Queensland

First Impressions…

You always have the worst thoughts towards a new situation or place but I was actually excited because my 2 friends were there at the same place so I had company already. The hostel itself is very basic but has everything you need and the area is just a small town but again has your basic commodities like laundry, food shopping, K- MART!!! haha

Being 100% honest my first week was so tough as the work is very different and not something you think your body can handle until you get used to the work it gets easier. Each day is different and I just always tried to stay sane with the friends around me and make a laugh out of the situation. It helps to think of it as a temporary situation and push each other by counting down your weeks.

Just don’t arrive expecting a lot as I seen so many people come and go from the hostel and their first impressions made them leave. At the end of the day everyone around you is in the same situation and living so you all have to just get together like a family and support one another to get through it.

Costs…

You’re honestly living the most care free life as your only bills are your rent, food & possibly alcohol if you become an alcoholic like I did. This is what boredom leads too! Haha

Rent at Budget Backpackers was $200 per week which included your travel to and from the farm as well.

Other hostels within Innisfail I know are similar priced.

The hostel I stayed at provided flats to those who didn’t want to stay within the hostel, although there was a waiting list. Couples got priority so I only had to stay 1 week in the hostel and then got moved to the flats across the street which are the same price as the hostel living.

Pay…

You get paid minimum wage which is $23.66 hourly and you get this paid into your account weekly.

You do have the opportunity to make extra cash by working for bars or restaurants within Innisfail at weekends. This is good for people who are willing to save extra to travel & not wanting to spend their wages on drink every weekend lol.

How long to work to qualify for 2nd year visa requirements???

Okay, I have been getting asked this a lot and it is difficult to understand. To qualify for 2nd year visa you only need to complete 13 consecutive weeks of work without missing a week. You need to complete 10 hours per week so if you only work 1 day which is 10 hours long you’ve completed 1 week.

However you also need to ensure you finish on the same date you started for example I started on the 29th October and I finished on 29th January.

Some people get confused on where 88 days come into this but I believe it would take 2 extra weeks if you were to count it as days.

For your own sake ensure you ask your farm before you start if you will be working 88 days or 13 weeks.

My Job (this sh*t is bananas)

I worked on a small family owned farm which was mainly bananas but they also grew dragon fruit. I worked maximum 3 days on my farm which was difficult to save money as my earnings basically covered food & rent.

My job was banana packing so I simply checked the bananas passing by on the banana wheel for bruises or defects, weighed the fruit and ensured the fruit wasn’t packed under or over a certain weight, placed the bananas into a bag and sealed the bag by using a tape machine.

Pretty basic job and very repetitive even worse when your listening to the same radio station that plays the same dreaded songs all day long for 3 months straight. I got my day in by keeping a strong mindset and reminding myself daily why I was doing this.

Some days were more difficult than others as the weather was either extremely hot or extremely stormy, luckily I mainly worked indoors in the banana shed however you did have tasks that would require you working outdoors in the heavy rain and cyclone storms.

The guys work was a lot more difficult than the girls they worked out doors within all weather conditions, from heavy cyclone rain to 44 degree heat. They also work 5 days per week so earn that bit extra than the girls.

Their jobs were to hump the banana bunches from the tree’s which weighed roughly around 80kg and looked about the same size as a human. They brought the bunches to the shed via a trailer and this is when the girls came outside and helped the guys by hanging the bunches up and un-bagging the bananas before they went through the washer.

Picking Dragon Fruit

Is it worth it???

110% worth it!!! You have a love / hate relationship with the situation but now looking back on it I know I will never have that experience again in my life!! It’s such a crazy situation you put yourself in working in blood, sweat, rat piss & seeing all sorts of crazy shit like bats, rats, spiders & snakes on a daily basis just became the norm to me.

You work extremely hard and the farmers are so lovely but really push you to your limits of work to get the job done. Sometimes I felt like I was working in a camp and living in Big Brother as there was always drama in the hostel lol.

It’s mentally draining and sometimes stressful. I came with the intentions of attending the gym everyday to stay in routine but it’s so difficult as your absolutely exhausted from your work day with it being so physically draining.

You build such a strong bond with people around you who make the shit living worth it and make the situation feel normal.

On weekends you literally just party on repeat. Oh and your weekend begins Thursday which is “Thirsty Thursday’s”, “Fancy Dress Friday’s”, “Sandstorm Saturdays” & “Sesh Sunday’s”.

Sometimes the hostel would of been mega crazy and too much for me and I’m not going to lie sometimes I love my alone time. So for me this is where I struggled and especially for those of you have stayed in hostels before you know what it’s like. Drugs are such a big deal too and for me who isn’t interested it can be very overwhelming and difficult to avoid as your living so close to these people and can’t escape from it.

I enjoyed getting drunk on Fridays it was so fun to get super wasted with Themed Fancy Dress and end up in a small shitty nightclub called “Rumours”. This is what I lived for all week at work lmao.

Fun times…

For me I knew I was doing my farm work before I even came to Australia because I have no intentions of going back home and would do anything to stay here. Although if your debating it and not fully satisfied that it’s going to be for you and worth it then I wouldn’t do it because it can be a very overwhelming situation and it’s not for everyone.

If you know you want to do it and stay out here for another year but have only arrived to Australia I recommend travelling and sightseeing a little bit first before you make your mind up. As you could arrive to the middle of nowhere and be like how do I know this is going to be worth it when you haven’t seen anything yet to give you motivation.

Living in Sydney for 6 months before my farm work pushed me and gave me that extra motivation on the farm when times where tough as I knew how much I wanted to come back and live in Sydney again.

Although I do believe this experience is different as a couple as you can push & help each other where as if your coming alone it may be more difficult as you’ve only got yourself and your friends around you to help motivate you.

As an overall experience your time here goes very fast and you have that much fun you don’t see your weeks go in!!!

Goodbye boots!!

Recommend…

I mainly recommend the area of Innisfail or anywhere around the East Coast of Oz as you have more options to travel. At weekends i always tried to see something new and visited quite a few places which also got your time in.

Within the area there are a few car hire places and I tried to go away atleast 1 weekend a month to get a feel for the real world again lol.

I visited these places & they are all in the surrounding area of Innisfail.

• Windin Falls

• Babinda Boulders

• Mission Beach

• Ettay Bay Beach

• Port Douglas

• Palm Cove

• Cairns

Applying for 2nd year visa…

When applying for your second year visa make sure to double check the website as there are a few fake websites that try to scam you. Also there are a lot of third party websites that may be cheaper but won’t be as quick at alerting you your outcome of your visa.

You don’t have to apply for your visa straight away but I applied for mine a few weeks before my first year visa expired.

However you can decide to leave the country and complete your second year in another couple of years. You have the option of using it up until your 30 years old.

Also I found out that your 2nd year visa gets refreshed so you can go back to your old job that you worked in your first year and your 6 months will be refreshed.

I applied for my visa on the Australian Government website costing $450. It processed so quickly and I literally got it granted within 5 minutes. Absolutely delighted!!! :))

Here is the link for the website for those who wish to get their visa processed quickly through the Aus Government.

https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/visas/getting-a-visa/visa-listing/work-holiday-417

Contact…

For those of you who are interested in going to Innisfail and staying at Budget Backpackers I have contact of the owner Steve who you can call and make aware when your thinking of arriving. If you arrive during the week he will offer you a free pickup from Cairns Airport. Although this is not necessary to contact as there is work available all year around so you can just arrive whenever.

I hope you enjoyed my blog on my 3 months farm work in Innisfail. I’ve tried to cover everything that I’ve received messages about and I know it’s difficult to relate as most farms and experiences can be different but hopefully this has give you all a fair idea of what to expect and the experience you could have.

FIJI

Hi guys & welcome back to my blog!!! Ahhh i don’t even know where to even begin with this blog post?!?

Continue reading to find out about my week in Fiji and also a few helpful tips too. I promise by the end of this you will be planning your trip!!

This holiday was absolutely amazing, difinitely an experience that I will cherish forever and it’s now up with my top favourite places that I have travelled!!

So, with it being ozzy winter me and Nathan wanted some sun and also just somewhere to relax for a week as it’s been pretty hectic recently with working and moving into our home in Sydney.

After researching and finding out how cheap fights were to Fiji we paid $590 AUD each for return which is roughly £320 WOW!!! There were no second thoughts we booked this instantly (joys of blowing the joint account).

Fiji is only a 4 hour flight away from Sydney!! We flew directly into Nadi International.

Thankfully everything ran smoothly once we arrived to Nadi Airport. We were greeted before customs by Fijian men playing guitars and singing which was just so cute.

On the other side after collecting our luggage we were then greeted by our hotel rep with a name sign who was picking us up from the airport and took us directly to the hotel. This meant that there was no confusion or stress involved.

A taxi fare to/from Nadi Airport to any of the town’s in Nadi is roughly 10-15 FJI Dollars.

Accommodation…

We booked our hotel through Booking.com which I highly recommend I use it for every destination I visit!!

We stayed at Bamboo Travellers Beach Resort, for 7 nights it cost $450 AUD which is roughly 680 FJI Dollar, in British pounds this is only rouhly £250 so its very cheap for a week!!

The room was pretty basic and had everything you needed which is just to (sleep). However the staff, restaurant and bar was brilliant!! The vibe was great it was a young age group and very quiet which made me love it even more. The food here is delicious which helps if you just want to laze around the hotel.

Bamboo was based right on your own private beach only for hotel guests. There were various activities such as riding horses on the beach, kayaking and paddle boarding. You also had the option to get a massage on the beach!!

Night Entertainment…

You have a bar within your resort and also have the option of exploring other hotels in the area to relax and have a drink at night.

Or you can watch the sunsets which I’m a sucker for!! Pink skies.

Most nights me and Nathan drank on the beach watching the sunsets!!

There were also Fiji Dance & Fire shows on the beach infront of the hotel. They were great entertainment and so talented!

We stayed close to Nadi town which I would highly recommend if you come to Fiji. This is because if you stay in a resort it’s further out of the town and this way you will not get to experience the real Fiji Culture and lifestyle.

The location is very ideal as it’s only a 10 minute drive from the Airport and beside the hotel is various restaurunts and shops where you can buy liquor.

We stayed in Fiji for 7 nights and honestly I wish I did 10 nights but maybe that still wouldn’t of been long enough?!?

I already want to book the next flight back there. You’re probably wondering why???

Well I’ve never met more warming friendlier people than Fijians. They honestly don’t have a bad bone in their body. They stop what they are doing to get to know you and you could be there for hours talking to these friendly people.

They call their lifestyle Fiji Time as they believe there is no need to rush anything you need to do or anywhere you need to be will happen when it happens. They have a very relaxing lifestyle and this is why they are so happy and positive.

When visiting some of the local Fiji villages I learnt that everyone knows everyone and they all come together as a family and share everything they own as a whole (how lovely). They call eachother sisters/brothers there is no such a thing as cousins, nephews/nieces.

In the Fijian villages I learnt that they are very strict and in each village there is a chief which sets the rules and he is the only one in the village allowed to wear a hat. Everyone in the village must obey the chief and I got told some young people when they turn into teenagers cannot deal with the strictness so they leave the village and move into town with friends.

What did I get up to?!?

DAY 1:

We arrived to our hotel late in the afternoon and were exhausted as we were up from 5am so obviously we took a nap and just chilled around the hotel to get to know our surroundings.

DAY 2:

There was expected rain fall this day so we were prepared and booked a day trip, we booked this through the travel desk at our hotel.

It cost 99 FJI dollars each which included various stops in a few towns in which you got to experience how the Fijians live day to day.

First stop was at a farmers market were we tried local fruits my favourite was soursop it was very sweet and tasted like a custard apple!! Unfortunately I was too busy eating so I didn’t bring my phone out to take pics here but this is what soursop looks like!!

We then progresssed on to some souviner stores until we reached Nadi Town and stopped off at Sri Siva Subramaniya Temple.

We had a group tour and learnt a lot about the Hindu Religion, it was very interesting.

You were not allowed to take any photos inside the temple but the art was amazing!! Before you entered the temple you had to wear a sarong and take off your shoes as a sign of respect.

It costed millons of Fiji Dollars to build this beautiful temple!

After the temple we continued our day trip to another small town which had the Gardens of the Sleeping Giant. Here you can see the mountain shaped as a sleeping woman! Unfortunately because of the rain it was quite cloudy so we felt we didn’t get to fully experience it here.

After this tour we finished up at the Sabeto Hot Springs and Mud Pools this was a fun experience (plenty of giggles). The hot springs are run by the local villagers which use the funds from tourists to better their village! (How amazing?)

Basically we covered our entire bodies and slopped around in this warm gooey natural mud pit then walked through the village until it dried into our skin.

When it dried in we scrubbed it off in the mud pools and then relaxed in the geothermal hot pools which were natural springs. We then ended the day by getting a couples massage by the local villagers this cost only 20 Fijian Dollars each and it was super relaxing.

DAY 3:

We went to the world’s first island beach club. Malamala was unbelievable to just chill on a private island all day sipping on cocktails.

We also booked this through our hotel travel desk and it only cost 150 FJI dollars each but it included a $50 bar tab each and you could also kayak, paddle board and snorkel around the beach club.

It took roughly 30 minutes to get here by boat from our hotel and the views on route were something else!!

The pool was amazing everything was just so blue and for being on a Saturday it was not over crowded which made the day better!

For the first time ever i tried kayaking with Nathan when I asked him he actually almost fainted that I was getting in the water hahaha. For anyone who doesn’t know me one of my biggest fears is water and I cannot swim!! So this was a massive achievement for me and in result we did not tip over and had a really good stable balance so I’m super proud. It was also very fun I would advise anyone to try if they haven’t already!!

The food at Malamala was tasty I ordered coconut peri peri chicken and Nathan ordered sushi which came out in a coconut also! Everything is about coconuts in Fiji.

The rest of day was spent on a sun lounger taking in these breath taking views.

DAY 4:

We relaxed infront of our hotel appreciating that our resort was on a beach. Catching rays and sipping on coconuts of course!

We then took a stroll for dinner to a restaurant we found on TripAdvisor that was only a 5 minute walk away from our hotel.

Awesome Grill was beautiful we actually ended up here 3 times as the staff were so friendly and of course the food was delicious!! We tried the burgers and then bbq chicken pizza (twice).

When we return we will definitely be coming back to Awesome Grill it had a quiet chill vibe!

DAY 5:

This day was incredible and topped the holiday!!! I would highly recommend the tour we booked through, they are called South Sea Cruises.

The day trip cost 260 FJI Dollars each which included pick up/returns from your resort, ferries transfers to Mana islands then you get a private cruise to Modriki Islands where the famous Tom Hanks movie was filmed “Castaway featuring Wilson”.

Throughout the day on the cruise you get unlimited soft drinks and alcoholic (I had to suffer due to recently finding out I’m allergic to anything which is not a spirit alcohol drink).

For lunch you got a bbq on board which was delicious!!

Throughout the journey the staff made the trip extra special by playing some fijian music on their guitars and we enjoyed how helpful and friendly they were throughout the tour!

On route to the islands we sailed past the island that the Australian Survivor TV show is filmed!!

When stopping off at the islands they were private and you spent roughly 1 hour on each. It was really relaxing and amazing to take in these moments!! I still can’t believe I was on the same beach that Castaway was filmed. It was so so beautiful.

After seeing all the surrounding areas we stopped off for a swim and Nathan enjoyed diving off the boat & snorkeling whilst I soaked up the rays on the front of the boat!

Finishing up the day we went to a Fiji village which had roughly about 500 people living here. When entering the village we were greeted to enter the church and Nathan got to experience being a chief were he had to sit at the front of the room and try Kava.

Kava is what Fijians drink as they are not allowed to drink alcohol in the villages. It comes from the root of the pepper plant. The locals say Kava makes you relax and very sleepy lol. It looked like muddy water so I wasn’t brave enough to try!!

We walked through the village and all the locals were very friendly just doing what they do daily washing their clothes etc. We walked to the end of the village were the school was.

All the kids stay in dorms within the school grounds and it was very overwhelming to see this is how they live and they are so grateful and warm hearted. They waved and greeted us all by saying “Bula-Hello”.

After this we boarded our cruise back to the islands and had a few further stops to swim in the beautiful blue waters.

DAY 6:

Today we explored around Port Denaru which is roughly a 10-15 minute drive from Nadi. There is a shopping centre here which has a lot of souviner stores to browse around and buy gifts.

We ended the day by having dinner at the Hard Rock Cafe.

Me and Nathan are obessed with the Hard Rock restaurants anywhere we go we ensure we dine here!! The food is so yum and gives me mega Florida blues! If you haven’t already tried the bacon/cheese potato skins you need too.

DAY 7:

Today being our last day we catched the last few rays of sunshine and had breakfast at our hotel.

We then decided to end the trip by taking a walk into the town which was roughly a 40 minute walk from our hotel.

We had heard there was a Burger King newly opened and we were dying to try it as there is none in Australia it’s known as “Hungry Jacks” but it’s a totally different taste! It was great to be reunited with a whopper burger & onion rings.

With this being our final night of the holiday Nathan wanted to take me out for dinner (how romantic).

We were craving mexian food and found a beautiful mexian restaurant in a resort near Port Denaru called “Mamacita”.

Although the menu was better than I expected and I wish I could dine here everyday!!

The resort was over crowded and very busy so the atmosphere wasn’t what we were used to. We expected a Mexian vibe like music but there were a lot of kids and noise!

After the meal there was a Fiji warrior show which was cool!!

Unfortunately we didn’t have time to visit the Capital of Fiji which is Suva. It was roughly a 3 hour drive from Nadi.

Another thing we missed out on but will do when we return is Cloud 9. This costs roughly 229 Fijian Dollars which includes a $60 bar tab to spend on board.

Cloud 9 is a floating platform paradise sailing through turquoise blue waters with a stocked bar and pizza restaurant. It has sun decks and a dj to entertain. The photos actually look fake!!

Summing up the holiday I would definitely recommend this a destination to travel as a couple but not as a family.

It’s very romantic and I feel like there isn’t enough to do for kids so they would get bored easy but adults could live here!!

Anything to be aware of??

Anywhere I’ve travelled…especially Thailand a lot of the locals try to rip you off and try get every penny you own off you. It’s not like this in Fiji, the locals are very caring and make you feel at ease.

However if you are trying to get a taxi I advise you order one through your hotel reception like we did as they get you the taxis that are priced by meters which are a lot cheaper!! Outside the resorts there are a lot of taxi drivers who try stop you and will over charge you as they have their own prices so make sure to haggle with them before you get in the car!!

On the local beaches and streets there are a lot of stray dogs. This was my only fear on this holiday as I’m scared of large dogs but these dogs don’t know how to behave or interact which worried me. There were a few times the dogs faught amongst themselves and it was scary to watch. So if you’re travelling here just try to stay well away from them to be on the safe side.

When the sun begins to go down you will notice in the mountains and even on road bys there is a lot of smoke this is because the locals burn sugar canes and rubbish!! When we first seen it we were a little worried and thought there were volcanic mountains close until we asked a local so don’t panic!!

Personally this was amazing to experience with the person I love and we have ticked off another destination on our bucket list.

I feel like a piece of my heart will now forever be in Fiji so a trip back will be happening for sure.. soon I hope!!

Whilst travelling you don’t only learn so many new things but also have the opportunity to met some awesome people which make being so far away from home a little easier!!

Surprisingly we met a lovely girl from Belfast and it was very funny to hear the strong accent again as we haven’t heard it in a while lol.

Sadly this comes to the end of my blog on my trip to Fiji. I hope after reading this blog all of you book a flight to Fiji!!

BULLYING & SOCIAL MEDIA

Hi guys,

This blog is an important one. It is about bullies and the dangers of social media which most people will probably relate too.

I got inspired to write this blog from listening to Podcasts & Instagram stories of people’s past experiences of dealing with online trolls and it honestly touched me so much on how they dealt with it and also how strong people are to overcome situations like this.

I’m not too sure about you but this affects me as a person because I can’t get my head around the fact why its such a common thing in society to happen on a daily basis.

“Wouldn’t it be amazing to live in a bully free world?”

I believe everyone should be free and be who you want to be if someone doesn’t like you for who you are. Don’t change, let them walk on as that is there problem and you continue shining.💫

Social Media 👥

I think bullies or online trolls use social media as a platform to bully others not only mentally but also physically. This has impacted some people so much to the point of suicide. I find it terrifying…where does it stop?!

Bullies often bully due to jealousy. If someone is pretty, doing well for themselves, working hard, buying nice things to treat themselves and living life to the fullest why should you give them hatred because your jealous? (Baffles me).

These bullies should be inspired & want to push themselves that little bit harder to do just the same instead of being jealous and giving the person hatred. Why not share kindness and love? 🤷‍♀️

There is so many online fake accounts (Catfish) and trolls hiding behind a computer screen. How do these people find it appropriate to sit infront of a keyboard and just physically and mentally destroy people?

Social media is growing everyday and the amount you can do on an app or social media account is expanding and updating so often.

For example I heard on a podcast that a relationship actually broke down because of this. What was happening?

Well, on Snapchat and also Find my IPhone app I found out recently you can check your linked partner on these apps to see their current location.

So imagine your partner tells you they are off to a certain place and you check these apps to find out they are actually somewhere different and they’ve lied to you? Hmm, it’s SO DANGEROUS.

I totally disagree with this, as you are invading your partner’s personal space but also this will tear you apart inside and it will eventually destroy your trust with this person.

However on the other hand. I heard a brilliant way to use the find my iPhone app. If your friend or family member goes on say for an example a date you can track them to ensure they are in a safe place. This idea is amazing for security and safety reasons.

How can we prevent online trolls/bullying?

  • Honestly I think as difficult as it may be and appreciating the fact everyone deals with situations differently. We need to always rely on friends or close family to talk about any difficulty you are having as it’s not easy to overcome and handle the situation alone! (We’re not all superheroes).
  • Be aware that not everyone behind an online account may be who they say they are. There are so many dangerous people out there catfishing and hiding behind fake accounts.
  • In this instance I advise you to have your social media page private and a good tip is to also set your Instagram messages to private. Therefore, only your followers can send you direct messages.
  • We should think twice before we actually say something as no matter what you say its revealed online, so you have to be super careful before you click to post your comment online just remember that it could offend anyone.

My Personal Experience…

Growing up I got bullied more than once. Through school I found it very difficult to deal with people and how they spoke about me.

It started in first year when I wore glasses and had braces I got bullied simply just because i had glasses and braces. How ridiculous does this sound? It may seem silly but seriously people don’t understand how their actions or words can affect somebody.

In a new school, with people sniggering and giggling at your looks. Its not easy to just let it slide no matter how small it may be. As you then compare yourself to other girls who are obviously prettier than you who don’t have glasses and braces and think where did it all go wrong?

It then kicked off again in 3rd year when I was roughly 14/15 years old. At this age you obviously want to try things like clip in hair extensions, make up and fake tan.

Well I did anyway. I was intrigued to know what it was all about, wasn’t every girl at this age?!Remembering how around this time we thought we were amazing at applying foundation without a beauty blender omg stop how did we cope? 🤣

Well I remember in my school all the girls were infront of the mirrors in the bathroom spending there entire lunch break topping up on there makeup.

A few times the girls in a couple years above me laughed amongst themselves in the bathrooms and even went online and made jokes about my makeup and tan. Again how ridiculous to be little and laugh at someone a few years younger than you.

Then majority of the time throughout 4th/5th year in school, I got laughed at for my personal appearance which was my nose. I got questioned like “How many times I broke it?” Which infact was none.

I didn’t have many friends in school but even my own so called best friends made up names and would of found this funny to laugh it. It was horrible as it happened almost every school day.

This lead to me being self conscious about the way I looked. I used to come home after my school day and be upset about how people found the way my nose is shaped funny.

I often did consider a nose job (how crazy). The older I get and also when I met Nathan too I gained a lot more self confidence. Now im like why would I let my appearance affect others to the point they force me to change the way I look? I learnt different ways to not care about how I looked to other people. Why should it matter?

I always felt alone and I used to be a person who would of said nothing and just came home and cried alone in my bedroom. I didn’t find myself surrounded by a great group of friends growing up and found many people in my area growing up, judgemental and jealous which led to hatred towards me.

This was one of the main reasons for my move to Australia. I didn’t even give it a second thought as hard as it was at the same time to leave.

I wanted a fresh slate with new people around me and I’ve gained so many amazing friends in such a short space of time already! 👭

Everyone has Haters ❌

I don’t think it’s fair that no matter what we do as humans we get judged for it. May it be for the way you look, the way you dress, your personality or what your going through. Someone will always judge.

Even celebrities get slated and judged but that’s what makes them successful as they strive from it and turn it into motivation to better themselves and anyways they know only a small % of the comments are haters and the rest are fans who genuinely like them for who they are.

Supportive Links 📞

https://au.reachout.com/everyday-issues/bullying

Reachout.com is for Australians and provides information to help any young person with guided tools designed for their needs.

1 in 4 young Australians are experiencing a mental health difficulty.

https://www.bullying.co.uk

Bullying.co.uk is for anyone throughout the whole of the UK. They provide a confidential helpline service for anyone dealing with bullying online or physically.

https://suicideawareness.co.uk

https://www.lifeline.org.au

Above are 2 links that are really useful for crisis support and suicide prevention. One for anyone in the UK and the other is for Australians. Anyone dealing with a difficult crisis or knows anyone who is please advise to reach out to these support groups for the best help and guidance!

This comes to the end of my blog. I hope you enjoyed reading and also took some tips on board too. This was something I felt I needed to point across as it’s such a common thing in daily day to day life.

Please share all your experiences relating to bullying or online trolls with me by doing so in the box below. ☺💕

Lots of love

Em.

Fitness Routine & Tips 🏋️‍♀️

Hi guys, I’m super excited about this blog as it’s something I do daily and I hope by me telling you my routine and what I find works best for me will also help you too.

Gym Routine:

Tip 1

It took me atleast 2 years to build confidence in the gym, this is something you do build the more often you go. As silly as it is no one is staring at you or judging what your doing, just be you, do your thing and shine!! 😀💫

Tip 2

If you feel less confident using machines or weights at the beginning (if you are a newbie) then this one’s for you!

Sometimes cardio can get very boring and repetitive. In this case from my experience I definitely recommend attending classes at your local gym.

I attended classes 3-4 times per week in my gym back home and it built me stronger as I learnt different techniques and how to use the machines/equipment properly.

Most gyms do give you an induction and will explain exactly what each machine is for.

I was always super embarrassed to do this too so I got Nathan to show me (still got laughed at) lol.

Tip 3

Remember you will not notice changes overnight this is a work in progress that you have to be super patient with but in the mean time keep patting yourself on the back! 😘

Tip 4

I recommend also planning ahead before the gym on what exactly your going to train as this will give you more time in the gym rather than dandering around deciding what to use and maybe the machine you want to use is currently busy so that gives you the option to go use the next machine and come back.

Tip 5

Try to train for atleast 1 hour as anything less will take longer to notice progress. Personally I train for 1 hour 30mins but everyone is different and should do what is best for them also.

Tip 6

This one is really important: Stretch before and after every workout.

My Fitness Routine🙋‍♀️…

Monday- CARDIO

•WARM UP-15min Run on treadmill.
•12 mins rowing machine
•10/15mins on cross trainer.
•400 steps on stairmaster split up 200 normal steps and 200 taking 2 steps at time.
•1min High Knees (x3 sets)
•1min Jumping Jacks (x3 sets)
•1min Butt Kicks (x3 sets)
•Do 20 Burpees (x3 sets)

•FINISH WITH ABS

Tuesday- LEGS

•WARM UP- 15min run on treadmill.
•Leg press starting at 40kg and raisng weight for each set, x3 sets of 10.
•10 Barbell swings x3 sets
•10 Lunges holding 5kg plate x3 sets.
•Back Extensions 10 x3 sets, squeezing glutes on each rep.
•10 steps ups on bench with 5kg plate x3 sets.
•Plate front squats 10 x3 sets.
•Narrow stance plate squats (feet should be together) 10 x3 sets.
•Wide stance plate squats 10 x3 sets (this one kills and is great for cellulite).
•Rope pull through 10 x3 sets squeezing your glutes at top of rep.
•Hip Thrusts 10 x3 sets
•Donkey Kicks 15 x3 sets
•Glute Bridge hold for 1.5min x3 sets.
•FINISH WITH ABS

Wednesday- ARMS

•WARM UP- 12mins on rowing machine.
•Curl bar skull crushes (12 kg bar) 10 x3 sets.
•Curl bar straight infront 10 x3 sets.
•Bicep curls with straight bar 10 x3 sets.
•Sitting down straight with curl bar above head to chest motion, 10 x3 sets.
•High Angel Cable Bicep Curls
(Machine pulling flat bar to head with chest tilt forward) set of 10 then 5 (twice).
•Cable Overhead Curls, 10 x4 sets
•Kneeling Cable Curls (flat bar) reps of 10,8,6 x2 sets.
•Lying Dumbell Tricep Extensions (8KG) reps of 10,8,6 x2 sets.
•FINISH WITH ABS

Thursday- CHEST & SHOULDERS

•WARM UP- 12 mins on cross trainer.
•Arnold press (7kg weights) frward and above head motion 10 x3 sets.
•Chest press using 8kg dumbbells, 10 x3 sets.
•Lateral Raises (this kills) chest tilt forward and trying to keep arms straight within each rep 10 x3 sets.
•Shoulder press, bringing weights down as slow as possible, 12 x3 sets.
•Upright rows, 10 x3 sets.
•Front press holding one weight above your head to chest, 10 x3 sets.
•Seated shoulder press infront and behind head, 10 x3 sets.
•Upright cable row, 10 x3 sets.
•Cable flys, 10 x3 sets then lowering cables to floor setting, 10 x3 sets.
•FINISH WITH ABS

Friday- BACK

•WARM UP- 12mins rowing machine.
•Face Pull, 12 x3 sets.
•Seated low cable row, 10 x3 sets.
•Dumbbell shrug 10 x3 sets.
•Dumbbell side bend, using one 8kg weight. 10 x3 sets.
•Back Extensions 12 x3 sets.
•Dumbbell Deadlift 10 x3 sets
•Bent over rows with 7kg dumbbells 10 x3 sets.
•Wide Grip lat Pull down 12 x3 sets (raising weight on each set).
•Pull up machine 10 x3 sets lowering weight for each set.
•Standing cable push down 10 x3 sets.
•Butterfly seated machine fly, 10 x3 sets.
•FINISH WITH ABS

Core:

•Crunches 1min
•Sit ups 1min
•10 climbers x3 sets
•Bicycle crunches 1min
•10 Flutter kicks x3 sets
•10 Leg raises x3 sets
•X-UP (crisscross with opposite leg to arm) 1Min x3 sets
•Toe taps 1min x2 sets
•End with plank hold for 1min
REPEAT THIS TWICE.

My Food Plan 🥦…

I do my meal prep for the week ahead on a Sunday. I like to be prepared in advance as this stops me from going off track and picking up the bad habits of snacking.

Meal 1
•Mash potato, hot smoked salmon fillet & side of green beans.

Meal 2
•X1 chicken breast with broccoli & cauliflower rice.

Meal 3
•X1 chicken breast, uncle bens special fried rice & a little soy sauce to add flavour.

Meal 4
•Sweet potato with inside scooped out, added with diced bacon, green peppers and hommus on top.

Meal 5
•Diced chicken with diced tomato, carrots & broccoli & side of sweet potato mash.

Snack Ideas:

•Hard Boiled egg & Spinach.

•Sunbites salted popcorn.

•Rice cakes with a spoonful of peanut butter.

•Greek style yoghurt with banana slices.

•Handful of mixed nuts.

•Whey Protein shake.

•Handful of grapes.

The Importance of WATER.

Aim to drink atleast 2 litres per day and if you exercise daily you should be aiming for 3-4 litres.

Drinking plenty of water really is one of the key steps for having a healthier body and mind.

Key Benefits of water:

•Healthier Skin

•Healthier Teeth & Bones

•Healthier Joints

•Reduced Fatigue

•Improved Digestion

Vitamins are considered essential nutrients

I find the following vitamins really important and take these daily.

•Biotin- Helps your body to maximise the use of other nutrients it receives and will maintain your red blood supply. Also helps the growth of your hair, skin & nails.

The food sources it can be found in are tomatoes, lettuce and almonds.

•Iron- Good for building muscles naturally and maintaining blood.

The food sources it can be food in are oysters, liver and for vegans beans, lentils and spinach.

•Multivitamins- Ensure your body gets the vitamins and minerals it needs.

•Fish oil- Good for preventing and managing heart disease also lowers blood pressure.

This comes to the end of my fitness and food routine summed up. I was super excited about this blog as it’s something that works so well for me and I enjoy sticking to this so I wanted to share it in as much detail as I have to see if it will help others also.

If there’s anything you want to ask me or have any questions about something I haven’t mentioned just pop me an email below 😊

Lots of love,

Em x