Wednesday, 26 August 2015

The OK Diner: That Fifties Vibe (Hartlepool)

Hello everyone! Sorry about the total random posting times and the lack of consistency lately, I promise that things will even out once I'm in Hong Kong and the end of next week. Anyway, apology aside, today I'm posting about my experience at the OK Diner in Hartlepool.

So, I never intended to do a write-up of my experience at the OK Diner but, to be perfectly honest, I just really loved the atmosphere and the fifties styled experience. Upon entering the authentic tin looking diner I got pretty excited, it almost looks like a movie set. The walls are adorned with relevant images, artwork and chalkboards containing deals and parts of the menus. I had been worried that it would come across quite gimmicky but I was pleasantly surprised. 

The music playing softly in the background matched the theme and the staff were charming. We had a 25 minute wait for the food but I'm not complaining as it was very relaxing to just soak up the atmosphere. I chatted to my parents as our food was being prepared with a warm coffee in my hands - they do great coffees without complex names and daft ingredients and I also noticed they did malt shakes and soda floats. 

The menu was all very Americanised and it was obvious that a lot of care and attention was put into creating the fifties vibe; whether it was the rock 'n roll playing in the background, the menu or the the general interior of the place - I don't know but it was just a genuinely nice place to dine. I would happily return if I was to pass by it again and I recommend it to anyone. 

I took the picture to the left so I could just show people what the general dining setup is, I felt like Peggy Carter talking to Jarvis (total nerd reference to Agent Carter but it was true!). Whilst it did look out of place in the British setting, it looked just as you would expect it to judging from the portrayal of diners on TV and film. 

So yeah, check it out. They have more diners dotted around the place and I'm sure they all have a similar feel and standard of service. Thanks for reading my write-up of the diner experience, I hope you guys enjoyed it as I've been meaning to type up more lifestyle posts. I also need to do a mani-Monday post at some point - when I get the time to sit and paint them, that is.

Heads up, my next post or two will be about Scotland as I'm staying there over the bank holiday weekend. 

Wednesday, 19 August 2015

Any Long-Haul Flight & Travel Tips? Beauty Or Non-Beauty

Hey guys! So on Thursday I will be two weeks away from my month trip to Hong Kong and I still don't have a clue what to expect when it come to long haul flights. I've only really been to Spanish islands so I've never been THAT far away, I'm completing the journey in two parts - a flight to Amsterdam and then from there a flight to Hong Kong. 

This post is pretty much just a plea to anyone who's ever been on a long haul flight as I'm not sure what to pack in my carry on bag... Or my suitcase for that matter. Any tips? I've heard about girls making up complex beauty routines for long haul flights but, to be honest, that seems a little OTT to me. As for the suitcase packing, as far as I'm aware, Hong Kong is very hot and humid place and I'm not sure how to prepare for that.

Help a girl out here?

Friday, 14 August 2015

Places I've Been & Places I Plan To Go

I know, the image to the left isn't fantastic but I took it on my most recent holiday. If you've visited my blog before, more specifically the past few weeks, you'll notice that a lot of my content now covers travel. That's not a permanent development but right now it's the most relevant aspect of my life. I returned from my trip to Majorca last week and I felt really inspired to write holiday themed posts. 

This post in particular is going to be a travel checklist and bucket list so I can list off where I have been and tell you all my travel plans. To be honest, I never thought I would be so interested in seeing the world or travelling from country to country but once I got over my fear of flying I really got into it. I love to experience different cultures and get a change of scenery, my only issue is the money it costs to get me places! Anyway, I'm going to start off with the list concerning the past and then follow it up with my plans for the future.

Where I've been:
  • L'Estartit
  • Cyprus 
  • Paris
  • Gran Canaria
  • Tenerife (x2)
  • Majorca
As for places I plan to go to, I'm going to be living in Hong Kong for one whole month. I'm splitting the month between holidays and remote working but I can't wait to experience it all! Not many people will remember this but last year I wrote a blog post called Places I'd Love To Go (Travel Bucket List) and Hong Kong was one of the top places I mentioned. I've wanted to go for so long and I've finally been given the push to go, the long haul flight is going to be slightly daunting but I'm sure it will be worth it. 

Other places I want to go:
  • America
  • Italy
  • Germany
  • Thailand
  • Dubai 
  • Egypt

Where is everyone else wanting to go? I love reading similar posts so if you have a travel bucket list post, or something related to travel, just leave a link and I'll make sure I check it out! Also, do you know of any places I should check out in Hong Kong? 

Thursday, 13 August 2015

Holiday Playlist

This post is about a day or two late but it's one I've been looking forward to writing. I used to write a weekly post about the music I'd been listening to but it dropped off when I started a different series. 

One thing I love about being on holiday is just the general carefree atmosphere, no work or hassle and a mix of songs that really help me relax. Before I go on holiday I always put together a playlist to listen to on the plane and whilst I'm chilling by the pool so I figured I could share with you my most recent playlist.

At home I tend to go for songs more in the rock/alternative/punk direction but something about going on holiday just pushes me towards the upbeat pop genre. The songs I'm about to mention were picked up by listening to the radio and curiosity, I didn't actively seek out and search for songs before my holiday. 

  • I Really Really Like You - Carly Rae Jepsen
  • Black Magic - Little Mix
  • Lovers On The Sun - David Guetta ft. Sam Martin
  • She's Kinda Hot - 5 Seconds Of Summer
  • Shine - Years And Years
  • Drag Me Down - One Direction
  • Cheerleader - OMI
  • Trap Queen - Fetty Wap
  • Poison - Rita Ora
  • Hey Mama - David Guetta ft. Nicki Minaj and Afro Jack
So, those were the ten songs I added to my holiday playlist this year. Of course I listened to others but they were more dated and I figured these newer releases would make a more interesting post. I am interested in what you lovely people are listening to over the summer so please, by all means leave a comment. :)

Tuesday, 11 August 2015

The Oh My Glo Detox + Body Confidence (Wear A Damn Bikini!)

So about a month and a half ago I was perusing the internet in my lunch break when I came across a link leading to a detox trial - the Oh My Glo detox. Since I was due to go on holiday it piqued my interest and I took a look at all of the benefits - there are many! It helps hair, skin, nails, metabolism... to name a few anyway. Since it was free at the time I ordered a mini sachet and, after loving the three day detox, I purchased a 28 day course.

Now, I'm not saying that the product miraculously cleared up my skin completely and the weight dropped off me. I am, however, saying that I felt my energy increase (I'm generally quite fatigued), my skin improved slightly and I felt much less bloated. It made me feel much healthier, the powder full of antioxidants didn't taste fantastic but it wasn't inedible. It was all in all much better than a teatox - those fairly awful courses of tea that serve only to make us feel ill, lightheaded and... queasy.

I don't usually post pics like the one to the right, much less wear a bikini. That's for two reasons:
Number 1: I've struggled with my body a lot since I was a kid
Number 2: I'm not one for showing off so much skin
Either way it's a rarity but I decided that I wanted to post a bikini picture on social media just to show that I wasn't embarrassed anymore and that I'm finally accepting my shape and size. It's something we all need to do, no matter what our body shapes are - no one should have to risk a white back and stomach for the sake of insecurities. On holidays in the past I have worn long skirts and covered up as much as possible but I think I've finally grown out of that - the picture was actually taken in Majorca during my recent holiday, for which I prepped for with the detox. Not to lose weight though, I just wanted a little boost in energy and the condition of my skin.

So yeah, the message for this one is do things like this because they are beneficial to your health and for gods sake, wear a damn bikini!

Monday, 10 August 2015

Exploring Majorca

Being under the age of twenty has its perks, one of which is that I still get invited on the family holiday - funded by my dad. This year the destination of choice happened to Majorca which was great because I had never been before. 

Majorca was a beautiful place, we stuck to Palma and Cabo Blanco as it was a family holiday and Magaluf didn't seem like the best setting for our more remote tastes in getaways. 

One downside of Majorca is that the weather is much more humid and hot and lets face it, us Brits aren't exactly used to the heat of the warmer areas of the world. We fare best in the rain and not even global warming seems to be changing that. Sunburn is always going to play a part in my holidays. Partially because I have really pale skin and partially because I don't want to go on holiday to a cold and snowy destination.

Now, when I titled this post 'Exploring Majorca' I really meant exploring because every single one of our holidays end up the same way; my mum naps at the hotel whilst my sister plays on her iPad as my dad, my brother and I check out every single nook and cranny of the place that we can. The photo to the right was a selfie my dad took when I got stuck on the ledge of a cliff that we decided to scale in our flip flops. I got off the ledge by standing on my dads back and then jumping the rest of the way. We got to the bottom of the cliff after about an hour and then had a swim in the sea - needless to say - I glared at my dad the whole way back to the hotel as it was his idea. He looks so very smug in that image, it's not my fault I can't climb in flip flops, that's not what they were designed to do.

It felt amazing to spend time with my family without work on my mind, I understand why my dad appreciates holidays so much. I've always loved seeing new places, I'm just a nervous flyer, I am getting slowly more comfortable with planes though. As a kid it's exciting to go abroad but it's not something you truly appreciate until you're working and busy all of the time.

The place we were staying at was fairly empty, not in volume of people, but rather in the commercial side of things. Close to the hotel we were staying at, Hotel Delta, we only managed to find empty chalets, a supermarket, a few restaurants and an additional market area. To be honest though, in that heat, I was fairly happy swimming and searching for shade. Hotel Delta had recently been taken over by Best Holidays and it was a pleasant place to stay. The only niggle about the hotel would be that none of the staff could speak English, hold off the firing squad, I don't mean it in an ignorant British 'everyone must speak English' way. It just seemed as if most of their guests were British and it would have made sense to have someone on hand to translate or represent the guests. My mum asked for water to take a tablet one night and the staff pointed her towards a sprinkler.

I'd love to hear about your recent travels, tell me about them in the comments or send me a link. It's always great to read about how others have gotten on abroad!