It's backpacking time!

 Well hello to you my reader chums! I can't believe it's happening - I'm finally off backpacking again. Ever since I got back from south-east Asia in 2019, I've been dreaming about heading off there again, and the time has finally come. I've been planning and preparing for this trip for most of last year and now I'm departing very soon for my first stop: Sri Lanka.

It's backpacking time

I'm visiting 7 destinations in southeast Asia, Sri Lanka, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam, Phillippines and Indonesia with my partner Ben. We've planned an itinerary packed with beach relaxing, city exploring, country and jungle living, and various activities to keep our travels occupied.

It has been four years since I last went backpacking and I'm excited to be back and experience the freedom of travelling, immersing myself in new cultures, and new sights and eating various types of food. There's so much adventure to be had and it's hard to express into words the emotions I feel for this trip.

It's going to be weird being away for three months, taking a career break and being in a different time zone for so long. I know I've done it before but since the last trip, my life has completely changed and there are different things to miss and be homesick from. Despite that, I know this trip is going to be a massive opportunity to learn, discover more about myself and open my mind even more.

I also wanted to say with no access to a laptop for three months, I'll also be taking a blogging break. Even though my blogging days aren't as solid as they used to be, it's still a constant in my life and something I absolutely adore.

Here's to 3 months of backpacking travels, let's see what they bring. It's not a goodbye, it's a see you later <3

I hope you enjoyed this post! Where are you travelling to this year?

Thank you for reading <3

How to spread kindness in winter

 Well hello to you my reader chums! Kindness is what makes the world a better place. Everyone deserves kindness in their life, whether it's a family member or a stranger in the street. You never know when someone is having a bad day or could use a little bit of positivity and why spreading kindness is key.

I know how difficult the winter months can be for many and why it's even more important to spread kindness during a time when most struggle. If you're looking to spread kindness more and unsure how, here are my best tips on how to spread kindness in winter.

How to spread kindness in winter

Send a loving text or letter

The power of words is everything, you never know how much they can mean to someone. Whether it's your partner, parent or best friend, send some kind words to them about how much they mean to you. This could be a simple text or if you really want to make it extra special, send a letter. I know how exciting that feeling is receiving an unexpected piece of post, so writing a letter with loving words are guaranteed to make them smile.

Offer to buy a stranger a coffee

In the winter months, hot drinks are a blessing, especially for a casual outing to see friends. If you're in a coffee shop, offer to buy a coffee for the person in front or behind you. I can assure you it'll make their day and you never know they may really be struggling.

Do an errand for a friend

Running errands can sometimes be too much if you've got a lot on your plate, unwell physically or mentally. Offering to do errands for a friend or family member can help with them more than you think. Whether it's doing some shopping, helping them with some chores, offering to take a package to the post office or looking after their children to give them a break.

Create a care package for a loved one

Care packages are such a gorgeous idea for a gift, whether it's to show you're thinking of someone or they're struggling with something at the moment. Creating a care package can be anything you'd like from their favourite food to their favourite toiletries. You can also make something such as a cake or a batch of brownies; anything with love is thoughtful.

Check-in on someone

Often the people struggling the most are the ones who appear the happiest. Check in on those around you, simply by sending them an 'are you okay' text. And, always ensure a follow-up to as they may not want to talk at first. Some struggle to reach out, and being the person to ask first can really give them the boost of confidence to talk.

Donate goods or your time

Donating is always appreciated whatever time of year but especially in the winter time when struggle can tend to increase amongst many. You can offer your donation through goods to the food bank or your time, volunteering to help out the community or at a care home. There are many options to help donate goods or time and help those around you.

Organise to spend quality time with a loved one

Quality time is the most important thing for those around us and the kind thing you can give anyone: your care and attention. Schedule some time to spend with a loved one, whether that's popping around their house for tea, inviting them over for dinner or booking a day out together in the city. Whatever your budget, you can find something fun to do; you don't need money to enjoy someone's company.

Cook or bake something for someone

Good quality food is the best gift you can give in winter because of the cold outside. If you love to cook hearty soups or cakes, any home-cooked food is a kind thing to give to your loved ones. 

I hope you enjoyed this post. What would you add?

Thank you for reading <3

Goals for 2023

 Well hello to you my reader chums! Hello 2023, it's crazy to think it's another new year and we're back around to January. I love when a new year hits because it's an opportunity to look back on my achievements from the past year and set some new goals to work towards. 

As the new year is here, these are my goals and ambitions for 2023.

Goal for 2023

Grow my freelance business further

I've just quit my employed job and took the risk with full-time freelance and I can't wait to grow my business further after I return back for my travels. My goal is to continue to work with clients on projects that make my heart happy and develop my skills further. I would love to be able to create a schedule which suits my flexible lifestyle and create a secured income every month.

Enjoy my travels

I'm going backpacking in January for three months and I couldn't be more excited to head back to south-east Asia. I'm lucky enough to be visiting Sri Lanka, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam, the Phillippines and Indonesia. I've got a booked-up itinerary and I'm looking forward to seeing the different cultures, experiencing all of the sights and eating all the different foods. I also want to plan future trips ticking off my must-see bucket list in 2023. 

Write another book

I set this goal last year, however, I was so busy with other work responsibilities, travelling and social life, everything got in the way of making time to write a book. But, this year, I want to prioritise setting the time away a week to get it written and total my number up to six books that I've written. I have many ideas moving around my head and I'm excited to put that to paper. 

Continue to build my self-love relationship

I preach about self-love all the time on this blog because I believe we all deserve to be the love of our own lives. I've actively been working on my self-love journey these past few years and I want to continue that work by focusing on it. Self-love isn't a finishing line, it's an endless journey, with ups and downs and learnings. 

Build my savings up 

Returning from travelling this year, I know I won't be as financially secure as when I leave for travelling. Due to this, I want to get working on my savings when I return, fulfilling a stable savings goal once more.

Read more books

I'm an avid reader, however, I feel like this past year life has gotten in the way and I wasn't able to read as many books as I wanted to. This year, like my book writing, I want to prioritise reading, perhaps a book a month. 

Work towards the publishing book route

Being a published author has been my dream for a very long time and every year I set the goal of achieving it, in the hope I get my books on the shelves of Waterstones soon. I've written five books now and I want nothing more than to get them published. I've pitched to agents for all the books and I'm keen to persist with this process until I get my name out there.

Appreciate the value of rest more

Resting is key to living a happy and productive life. This year, I've gotten a bit better at knowing when to halt working and take a break. Now, working as a freelancer, I'm able to find more of a flexible schedule and be able to rest on my own accord and appreciate that a lot more. When I'm fully rested I can give 100% at what I do and avoid burnout.

Continue to build healthy boundaries

Healthy boundaries are incredibly important to me and this year, I've improved in setting them with everyone around me, putting my needs first and listening to my mind, and what I need to care for my mental health. I want to continue these healthy boundaries this year and develop my relationships further. 

Make the house a home

Moving out last year with my partner into his place, I'm now excited to make the place ours together and implement changes that are our thing rather than only his, as well as put my own spin on things. He is home to me and I'm excited to make the flat ours completely with special touches.

I hope you enjoyed this post. What are your goals?

Thank you for reading <3