Tuesday, December 10

A Postcard from Miami 2019


It's difficult to choose where to stay when visiting a new city but I am so happy we found Brickell. It is the heart of the financial district - the lights on the skyscrapers are beautiful at night and walking along beside the Biscayne Bay, and seeing both a dolphin and a manatee, was one of the highlights of our stay.

We found a lovely little air bnb located on the 14 floor of a building in the city - it included free parking and was so much better value for money than any of the hotels we looked at. I shared photos of the apartment on my insta stories (check out my Miami highlights) and I'd recommend it to everyone. Brickell is close enough to everywhere you'd want to go in the city and close to, but calmer than, Miami beach. 

Wynwood Walls & Art District

After a morning wandering from Brickell to downtown Miami and Bayfront Park I realised we could hop on the 'Metromover' to get within a 20 minute walk of Wynwood. The Metromover is a free automated people mover train system operated by Miami-Dade Transit and serves the Downtown Miami, Brickell, Park West and Arts & Entertainment District neighbourhoods. It's an AMAZING way of seeing more of the city and so easy to hop on and off. 

Obviously the 'Wynwood Walls' caught my eye on social media but I didn't expect the whole area to be so cool. You can see the regeneration taking hold of what was once a run down area of the city with lots of unique shops and breweries popping up. 

After we check out the murals we enjoyed a cold beer in J.W Brewing before jumping back on the Metromover.

South Point, Miami Beach

On our second full day in the city we got a Lyft to Miami beach because you really can't say you've been to the city without visiting the beach. The nightlife wasn't really what we were looking for in this trip and to be honest the restaurants along the beach were very touristy. However, it was good to see the view looking back across to the city and dip our toes in the Atlantic ocean.

Miami Beach Botanical Garden

If you want to escape the busyness of the beach I cannot recommend 'Miami Beach Botanical Garden' enough. It is only small but as I hope you can see from the photos a real oasis of nature. We were able to sit and watch the animals in the pond, marvel at the air plants my mum would be jealous of and enjoy the silence before heading back to our apartment after a busy day. 

Sunday, December 8

5 Things That Made Me Happy This Week #13

Our holiday in Florida was much needed and an absolute dream. Getting back to reality was bumpy though - walking to and from work in the dark, freezing cold and full of the cold wasn't easy! However, since then I've felt so much better and starting to feel festive now December has arrived.

1. My New Phone

I thought it was finally time to upgrade my iPhone 6 so after much deliberation I purchased a red iPhone XR while we were in Miami. At first I was worried it might be too big but I am loving the upgrade and the better camera. I also decided to treat myself to the wireless earbuds I've had in my Amazon basket for months. I'd recommend the TaoTronics SoundLiberty 53 earbuds if you are thinking about treating yourself on a budget.

2. A Weekend at My Mum and Dads

Last weekend, for the first time in our 5 year relationship, Scott suggested we go to my parents for tea. We stayed the night so we could enjoy a couple of glasses of wine and it was the loveliest night. The next day we went to the V&A to check out their new exhibition and I treat my parents to lunch at the Tatha Bar and Kitchen

3. Comfort Food and Cosy Jammies

Now it's dark and cold at night all I want to do is come home, put on my fleecy pyjamas and enjoy some comforting food for tea. Mince and dough balls were a particular but tonight we have a 'Festive Burger' from our Hello Fresh box.

4. Taylor Swift's New Album

I might be late to the party but since downloading the Amazon music app I've been loving Taylor Swift's 'Lover' and have been playing 'I Forgot That You Existed', 'Lover', 'I Think He Knows' and 'Paper Rings' on repeat.

5. Collecting for the Angus Toy Appeal

Thinking about kids not getting presents at Christmas or parents struggling with the guilt when the have to focus on putting food on the table makes me so sad. So, when I heard that my work was collecting for the local 'Angus Toy Appeal I knew I had to do something. Focusing on teenage boys and girls I went to the shops on my way home and bought some presents for Children who will appreciate them.

With just two weeks left at work I'm starting to get excited for the Christmas holidays and doing lots of festive things over the break. Maybe I will even start my Christmas shopping soon!

Thursday, December 5

A Postcard from Orlando 2019

In November we jetted off again to Florida for the second year in a row but this time we flew from Aberdeen to London to Miami. My boyfriend was suffering with broken ribs so we decided against any parks this visit but instead saw lots of different places. 

This first part will focus around Orlando where we spent the first week and a bit. We hired a car at Miami airport and drove the 3 hours late at night so we woke up in Orlando. This is one of my favourite places in the world and I love looking back on all these memories.

Wekiwa Springs National Park

How beautiful is this spot for a swim? We visited Wekiwa Springs National Park on a Monday morning but I can imagine it is a popular spot at the weekend. The whole national park is beautiful and we decided to do a 3 mile hike. Luckily we didn't encounter any Florida black bears.

 Old Town Kissimmee

Again somewhere we've never been but Old Town Kissimmee was interesting for a wander one morning. I heard it is jumping at night but it's still got lots of quirky shop if you decide to visit in the sunshine. 

Kissimmee Lakefront Park

After visiting the Old Town we jumped into the car and drove the short drive to Kissimmee Lakefront Park. Again this is a stunning example of wild Florida with lots of wildlife, fishermen and a chilled atmosphere. I honestly could have stayed here all day... we even saw a few wild alligators floating in the water. 

Daytona Beach

Just an hour in the car and we reached Daytona Beach - the worlds most famous beach! We've already been to Coco Beach and Clearwater so we wanted to experience something new and Daytona didn't disappoint. We had a wander down the boardwalk, lunch at Bubba Gump and then played in the waves. The perfect beach day even if it was off season. 

Orlando Magic - Amway Center 

Going to an Orlando Magic game was the highlight of our holiday. I'm going to be recommending it to everyone going to Orlando - even if you don't know the first thing about basketball. You get so caught up in the atmosphere of the game and there is SO MUCH going on in the time outs. Plus their mascot, Stuff, is loads of fun.

If the seating puts you off then I'm happy to report that because of the hight there wouldn't be a bad seat. So if you can only justify the cheap tickets - go for it!

Let's Go Magic!

Lake Eola Park Farmers Market

We visited Lake Eola on our last visit but knowing there is a farmers market on a Sunday we couldn't resist another trip.

It is a great market too with lots of lovely stalls and so many options to get something to eat. If you visit I'd recommend 'The Lucky Dumpling Co.' - mine didn't last long after I took a picture!

Top Golf

On our final morning we went along to Top Golf to take advantage of their half price Tuesdays. Maybe a little pricier than some activities but it was so much more fun than regular golf. If you want to know more then watch Tim Tracker's video - that is what made me want to go.

And just like that our 10 night in Orlando were over and we were jumping back in the car to head back to Miami to explore for a few days! If you want to see from from our holiday check out my Insta Stories highlights for lots more photos.