Dublin - March 2016

James and I took a short trip to Dublin for our honeymoon and we left the day after we got married which was really exciting. We only had two places on our list that we really wanted to visit, the rest we just sort of winged and wondered around. After Rome, we realised three nights in a city would be more than enough to get some rest and visit a new place. So that was the main idea for this trip - we took the MacBook so we could watch films in bed, stocked our room up with snacks and had nothing scheduled so no pressure!

When we arrived on Sunday, we were both really tired from being awake from 3:30 in the morning so we pretty much wrote the day off. We arrived at our hotel 'Clontarf Castle' and weren't allowed in our room until 2pm so we found a very quiet hidden away area in the foyer which I named 'The Cave' and took a much needed nap whilst James played a game. After being able to access our room an hour early, we also discovered that the hotel did in fact have a gym, so we spent a good 40 minutes in there, then we both had a shower and had a proper sleep in one of the comfiest beds I've ever had the pleasure of flopping into. We then had a posh meal in the hotels restaurant (note to self: never do this again…crazy expensive!) and then we had an early night ready to venture into the city the next morning.

Clontarf Castle, honeymoon hotel, fancy hotel, castle hotel, hotels in dublin, wedding hotel

Day 1 - Dublin Zoo

Luckily, we had already planned out any bus routes and locations beforehand so finding the zoo wasn't too much of a problem. We got a bit of breakfast down at one of the Starbucks on Fleet Street, then hopped on a bus which took us just outside of the Phoenix Park grounds. We only spent around an hour or so mooching around the zoo as it was bank holiday monday and absolutely swarming with small children. We also noticed that some animals had huge pens or enclosures for the tiny size of the animal, yet larger animals had smaller spaces. Perhaps certain animals have a decent sized bedroom and the areas were saw were just 'viewing pens' but apart from that, most animals we saw had a pretty good range of enriched environment activities and were being fed delicious looking meals. Our particular favourite animals were the Painted Dogs and Red Pandas :)

Dublin Zoo, Ireland, Red Panda, Panda, Dublin

After the Zoo, we caught another bus back into the city centre and grabbed some lunch at a really cool place called 'Chopped'. This was like a Subway in terms of system…but BETTER! James had the Vegan Body Builder, which was a wrap absolutely crammed with veggie goodness and tofu. I went for the 'build your own' where you could choose a salad box, a wrap or a sandwich and you picked 1 green option, 1 main, 3 fillings and a dressing. I had a mountain of spinach, organic tofu, sun dried tomatoes, an egg and egg noodles, which they then chopped up altogether and dressed with some olive oil. Beautiful!

We had a wonder around the shops and bought a few bits and pieces then grabbed some dinner in an M&S to eat back in our hotel room. When we arrived back at our room, we found a cheeky slice of chocolate cake my Mum had arranged for us to be sent. It was delish!

chocolate cake, wedding cake,

Day 2 - The Guinness Storehouse

The 29th March was James' birthday so we headed over to the Guinness Storehouse for a birthday treat. Again, we hopped on a bus which dropped us off pretty much outside the gates so it was easy enough to get to. Inside the storehouse is like nothing I ever imagined, it was absolutely enormous. Until we visited, I had no idea just how popular Guinness is worldwide and you learn so much here about how its made and what makes it so special. At the end, you are taught how to pull your own pint (which I was pretty proud of) and with James being an ex barman, he found it to be a breeze! I only managed to drink a quarter of my pint but still, its better than nothing! If I hadn't had a headache I probably would have necked the whole thing…

Guinness, Guinness Storehouse, Dublin, Things To Do In Dublin, Ireland

After the storehouse, we went to watch the new Batman V Superman which in all honesty, I had very few hopes for after reading some of the reviews whilst scrolling through my Facebook feed. But it was in fact a pretty good film, I didn't enjoy the first half but the second half was great and I have a new found love for Wonder Woman. It's about time the super hero films featured some female characters, heroins in particular. Having said that, I'm more excited for Suicide Squad…I have waited a long time to see Harley Quinn!

We found that 3 days was plenty of time for us and it was a great little trip away as well as a tick off of our bucket lists! Our hotel was beautiful and the staff were extremely accommodating - we would highly recommend Clontarf Castle if you ever find yourself travelling to Dublin. It was such a treat!

Thankyou for reading,

Ellis x

Our Wedding Day - 26.03.16

This day was perfect. 
James Woolley - you make me so happy.

Day Trip To London

Yesterday my Mum took me to London for a day out with her friend Julia and her daughter Izzy. I'd not been to London for a good few months and to get back out into the big metropolis was both immensely but extremely overwhelming. I think when you live in a fairly open country area, its such a huge contrast to step out into a bit bustling city that it almost doesn't seem real.

We started off at Selfridges where we had a lovely lunch on the rooftop Forest Cafe. Ridiculously expensive, but the food was beautiful. My personal favourite part of this restaurant was the little picnic blankets that were draped over the backs of each chair, just in case it got nippy. The canopies were open just a tad to let a breeze in and the weather couldn't have been nicer for this time of year. The only downside was the fog hadn't quite shifted but had it done, we would have been able to see the Shard and the Gherkin buildings in the distance.

After Selfridges we had a wonder around Oxford Street and I finally got to have a good rummage in the big Lush store. It was magnificent. I don't have a bath rub where I live now so I've had nearly years of no bath bombs or soap bars :( on the bright side, this forced me into trying out some other little fancies that I perhaps wouldn't normally pick up.

golden handshake, Lush, hand

The first thing I bagged was this hot hand mask called 'Good Handshake'. I thought this might do my ancient looking hands some good because recently during these cold months, they've cracked with dryness and just look like a terrible mess. This magic on a stick smells wonderful and I have very high hopes for it!

Lord Of Misrule, Lush, shower gel

I also picked up one of these dinky bottles of shower gel for James to try. It has a really fresh scent to it and since James is all into his herby concoctions, I though this would be perfect. I also got a little tin of 'Vegelene' which I have never seen before - the smell is a little bit strange…very sort of oat-y and almost off-putting but again I have high hopes for this.

vegelene, Lush

The last coupe of bits I found are without a doubt my favourite finds of the day. I got a box of the Candy Floss Showder and a little tub of the Tooth Fairy powder. They both smell very much like Snow Fairy (which is my favourite Lush smell!) and I found both of them to just be all round cute and unusual. I used the Candy Floss in the shower this morning and realised its actually an exfoliator as well as a wash product. It smelt absolutely incredible and was so much fun to try out. The powder foams up when it gets well and it has left my skin feeling wonderful. I can still smell it 5 hours later and I'm just dying to hop back into the shower for another go. Its just nice as well to be able to enjoy Lush products despite not having a bath tub to have a good soak in. The shower friendly items bring a huge smile to my chops. Another bonus to this Showder is the packaging which looks like some cute retro laundry powder. I am a huge fan!
I have yet to try the Tooth Fairy powder but it just looked so cute I had to get some to have a go with.
Candy Floss, Lush, London, Oxford Street

Tooth Fairy, Lush, Oxford Street

Lush Oxford Street, Lush, Oxford Street, London

Lush Oxford Street, Lush, Oxford Street, London

Lush Oxford Street, Lush, Oxford Street, London

We also had a wonder into Irregular Choice and Skinny Dip London - I didn't get anything from either of these shops but I fell in love with Irregular Choice's unicorn display! Pretty sure no one would have noticed me lugging it out of the shop but the thought of carrying it around London with me put me off slightly!

Irregular Choice, Carousel Horse, London, Carnaby Street, Pretty Horse

Anyhow, that is all for this post but it was such a fun day out that I thought I'd document our trip. It's always nice to look back on photos. I think with todays social media access its easy to forget sometimes that hard copies are also nice to have around the house and that its always a good idea to back up your memories this way. You never know with technology when its going to crash and loose every photo you've ever saved! Watch this space!

Ellis x

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