Friday

36 Hours in Venice

I'd wanted to visit Venice for a long time. My Grandma loved it there and, although she took me to Italy as a child, I'd never got to experience her favourite city. Unfortunately, I think I got a bit carried away in the excitement of following her footsteps and forgot the most important thing I should consider when booking trips: I hate the heat. Italy is hot. Perfect!

36 Hours in Venice

Thursday

Five Reasons You Should Visit Riga

Remember when you were a kid and adults would say 'don't talk to strangers'? And then when you became a teenager and it was all 'don't meet strangers from the internet'? And then when you reach adulthood, you think 'screw that, I'm going to Latvia with a stranger from the internet!'? Well, maybe not exactly those specifics, but that's how it worked with me. I got talking to Hayley years ago and when we finally met up in real life, we decided to do it in Riga airport.

Reasons to visit Riga Latvia

Tuesday

Review // Lush Salted Coconut Hand Scrub

Did you know that when you order from the Lush Kitchen, you can request samples? I'm not sure if it works for standard Lush orders or just the Kitchen, but if you pop a nice, polite little note asking for samples, they'll usually do it. Rather than list specific products, I like to ask for things like 'your favourite products' or 'the best summer products'. When I asked for the latter, a little pot of Salted Coconut Hand Scrub was snuggled up inside my package. After trying it, I loved it so much that I bought a full sized pot.

Lush Salted Coconut Hand Scrub

Monday

OOTD // Venice Skirt

When we booked our trip to Venice, I thought 'Perfect! I'll have the cutest outfit photos with all those bridges around!' Within approximately a millisecond of arriving, I realised things were not as simple as I thought. Every bridge I encountered- and there really are a lot- was crammed with people and flooded with direct, very hot sunlight. Things were not looking good! Then we had lunch on the north side of the main island, and as it was very quiet in that area, we had a look around for shady bridges. Rejoice! We found the perfect one! 

Venice OOTD
Top: Primark (similar here)
Skirt: Lindy Bop
Shoes: Ellie Goulding x Deichmann

Sunday

Nails // IBD Bedtime Aura

Knowing I had a couple of trips ahead, I was sensible and took a pale pink colour to my nail salon. While I was there, the staff started looking through their new deliveries and found this cute colour that was almost identical to the one I'd brought with me. They wanted to try it out and I liked the idea of being the first person to wear it, so I put my own bottle away and had this instead- Bedtime Aura by IBD.

IBD Bedtime Aura Swatch

Friday

Travel Goals // Aruba

With all the stress of the election, don't you feel like it's time to escape? Swapping political nerves and our miserable British summer for white sand, sparkling sea and warm days just sounds like the most perfect way to relax. Rich and I have been considering a Caribbean escape for a little while now, and Aruba looks like the ideal island paradise for us. 

Aruba Beach

Why Aruba? Well, it may be a small island, but it's jam-packed with everything we're looking for in a Caribbean adventure!

BEAUTIFUL CLIMATE

Just take a second to imagine a Caribbean paradise. White sands, azure ocean, the sun beaming down... This is Aruba through and through. Better still, it manages to avoid the hurricane belt and is one of the more dry Caribbean climates, so you have a high chance of the warm, sunny heaven that you're picturing. I mean, just look at these photos! And imagine how banging your Instagram would look! I know you shouldn't be travelling purely for the likes but it's an added bonus, right?

FUN ADVENTURE

OK, confession time: I'm not big on the whole lie-on-a-sunlounger-for-two-weeks holidays. Don't get me wrong, I love a beach and of course I want a chance to relax, but I also need fun activities to keep my mind active. On this small island, Aruba has everything I could possibly need, from parasailing and submarine expeditions (yes!), to off-road safaris and exploring beautiful natural caves and pools. When I need to relax from all the excitement, there is a wide selection of spas offering signature Caribbean treatments. What more could you ask for?

CARIBBEAN CULTURE

A little research into Aruba shows the island is renowned for its warm people. The population may only be 105,000 (just twice that of my hometown!) but it's made up of a range of different cultures and backgrounds, meaning everybody is welcome in Aruba. Then there's the Dutch influence combined with the Latin vibe and relaxed Caribbean spirit. It truly sounds like a place where you can relax and be yourself at all times.

Aruba Caribbean Kite Surfing

There are so many islands to choose from in the Caribbean, but Aruba is definitely a front runner. With its unique melting pot of cultures and the sheer number of fun activities to try out, it looks like the perfect holiday destination for me. Sound like your kind of place? Then you're in luck!

Aruba Tourism are running a Facebook competition in which you can win a trip to the island. Yes, really! You can find out all the details, and enter for yourself, right here. Fingers crossed! 

Post written in collaboration with Aruba Tourism but all words and opinions my own. Images licensed by the Aruba Travel Authority, aruba.com

Bloglovin' // Twitter // Instagram

Sunday

June Wishlist

My birthday month is here and that means it's time to crack out the summer clothes. Unfortunately, I won't be chilling out on a beach somewhere but I am visiting Venice for the first time so that's very exciting! Still, I've picked out some cute tropical-themed items so I can pretend I'll be lounging around in paradise.

Plus size summer tropical wishlist

Red tropical dress // Orange co-ord // Palm pencil dress
Pink skater skirt // Toucan pyjamas // Ra-ra skirt

Affiliate links have been used in this post

Bloglovin' // Twitter // Instagram

Saturday

101 in 1001 XXXVI

I'm trying really, really hard not to wish my master's away. I keep thinking 'I can't wait until my work is over so I can have a life again' and then realising this means my MA will be finished, which is a sad thought! I just love studying, ok? As you might imagine, this means I haven't done a great deal towards my goals in April or May, which seems to be what I say at the beginning of every month! I've got a huge amount of things planned for autumn/winter 2017 though so I'll more than make up for it later.

#49 Get my teeth whitened

Selfie Slytherin Dress

Bad quality selfie because I'm still getting used to smiling with my teeth showing! I started this in March but forgot to include it in last month's post. Man, teeth whitening is a pain. I'm doing the at-home course from my dentist which is supposed to take two weeks but I've taken a little break until after my next appointment. Sitting with mouth guards in for two hours, not able to swallow, having gel and saliva building up in your mouth is a horrible, horrible sensation. As if that's not bad enough, I then have to deal with intense sensitivity afterwards. Ugh. Still, I'm halfway through and my teeth are looking good! They're not white at the moment but they're brighter and paler- more like a luminous beige. Hopefully the remaining 7 days will sort that out!

Friday

May Reading Round Up

Somehow my most stressful months always end up being great reading months. Probably because I like to hide from all responsibility by burying my head in a book instead! The good news is I somehow managed to meet all my deadlines and still read six books. Don't ask me how. Just know that I did. 

May books read

Thursday

Review // Curated Combination

I have a confession to make. Until now, I'd never tried a subscription box. I know, I know. I'm not worthy of the blogger title. But the good news is that now, thanks to Curated Combination, I can finally say I've experienced the excitement of opening up a beauty subscription box!

Curated Combination Subscription Box Review

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