A Ugandan Adventure

On safari in UgandaHello! It’s been a while… On Saturday I got back from a two week holiday/road trip/adventure in Uganda. The purpose of the trip was to visit friends who are currently working out there and, having never been to Africa before, it was a trip I was both excited and wracked with nerves for.

In two weeks, seven of us drove over 1,000 miles in two 4x4s, visiting national parks and forests, trekking with chimpanzees and gorillas, watching giraffes graze on trees and birds perched daintily on top of hippos. We drove through villages where avocados and tomatoes were stacked with precision, where women carried bundles of sticks and jerry cans full of water on their heads, and where children waved and shouted ‘muzungo muzungo!’ [foreigner] at us. It was so removed from any country I’ve ever visited and all the more incredible for it.

I had a total social media/news/blogging break while I was away, but I did take my camera along for the ride. Here are some of the best bits of the trip, including a random outfit photo taken on the last day. Appearance was so far down on my list of priorities while I was away – practicality was key and as the country’s dusty red earth clung to us wherever we went, old clothes were favoured over vintage dresses or anything pale in colour.

Anywho, without further ado, here’s a giraffe!

Giraffe at Murchison FallsUgandan travel guideA lone outfit photoUgandan children at RushagaSouthern UgandaBandas at Nshongi Gorilla CampElephants at Queen Elizabeth ParkUgandan childrenThe sunset at Lake AlbertChamelion on a stick

Bloglovin |Twitter | Facebook 

OOTD: Slouchy Sports Luxe

High street sports luxe outfitI think I finally understand the ‘sports luxe’ thing. After admiring it from afar, mostly in the pages of ELLE magazine, I’ve found a pair of trousers that qualify.

The sports luxe trend has been hanging around for a couple of seasons now and while I own plenty of fitness clothing, I couldn’t ever see myself pairing overpriced jogging bottoms and sweatshirts with stiletto heels. I think the issue is that to wear the trend head to toe requires polished hair and make-up – something you’re unlikely to see round these parts.

I picked these navy trousers up in the Zara sale and they are hands-down one of the most comfortable pairs I own (sorry, florals). I was originally put off by the baggy seat and tight ankles combo, worrying that they looked and felt too much like jogging bottoms to be considered ‘luxe’. Happily, they are slouchy in a good way and my friends and colleagues have assured me that I don’t look like I’m about to start running up and down stairs a  Rocky.

These trousers cost £17.99 in the sale – not bad for a pair that I can see myself wearing year-round. They actually remind me of a pair that Niki owns, so I’ll have to look to her for some style inspiration!

Floral vest – Pull & Bear / Navy trousers – Zara / Sandals – Primark / Necklace – Accessorize

Zara trousers and Pull and Bear vestPull and bear floral vest and Zara trousersBlue skies over BristolZara navy silk harem pantsThistles at Leigh WoodsZara trousers and Pull and Bear topRed Devon cows at Leigh Woods

Bloglovin |Twitter | Facebook 

#StandForSomething: Summer in the city with Dr Martens

Shirt and bowler hat comboPhew! Just editing photos that feature a buttoned up shirt are making me hot under the collar. Summer is well and truly here and has hit Bristol, and the rest of the UK, with a sledgehammer over the past couple of weeks.

I’m all for wearing teeny tiny shorts and vests while on holiday, but living in a city means that I’m surrounded by beautiful women who are able to pull off long sleeved blouses tucked into jeans and ankle boots in the height of summer, and who don’t look like they’re about to melt. I thought I’d give the look a try with this ensemble and while I couldn’t quite face skinny jeans (it is pushing 30 degrees after all) my trusty New Look shorts make an acceptable stand-in.

Dr Martens Adrians in cherry redI picked this shirt up from Old Navy when we were in San Francisco and since it’s a little too big, I like tying it at my waist. It’s 100% cotton so it’s seriously comfortable in this weather, but it also creases like crazy. You win some, you loose some…

The shoes are from Dr Martens. When I was asked to take part in their #StandForSomething campaign, I was a little worried about how to handle thick leather boots (like my navy ones) in such hot weather, but fortunately they sell plenty of shoes and sandals too. I picked this pair of cherry red Adrian loafers from the Bristol store and the combination of classic chunky DM sole and fading red colour (a bit like the Chesterfield sofa I’m pining after for our living room) won me over in a heartbeat.

One of the things I like about Dr Martens is that you can’t be a wallflower while wearing them. They command attention and as such, my small but growing collection always pushes me to style them in interesting ways. I also feel like I could stomp around in them to my favourite music all day, which is an added bonus…

The Dr. Martens Store, 16 Broadmead, Bristol, BS1 3HH

Cream and navy polka dot shirt – Old Navy / Shorts (old) – c/o New Look, Cabot Circus / Cherry red ‘Adrian’ shoes – c/o Dr Martens / Bowler hat – H&M Black bag – clothes swap

Dr Martens Stand for Something outfitRed Dr Marten AdriansOld Navy shirt and green bowler hatDr Martens cherry red AdriansOld Navy shirt, New Look shorts, Dr Martens shoesOld Navy polka dot shirt

Bloglovin |Twitter | Facebook 

My Exercise Routine

Current exercise routineThere are two pastimes I’m loving at the moment and one involves being sedate and calm, while the other is at pretty much the other end of the scale. These two are passions that have always been there, but have stepped up a gear recently. They are reading and exercise, and I wanted to write a little bit about the latter. If you follow me on Twitter or Instagram then you may be aware of how much I’m enjoying my exercise routine at the moment, and as it’s quite varied I thought I’d share a little bit about each sport/activity.

Boxing

In pursuit of a new exercise fix, I recently joined a boxing gym and I absolutely love it. At the moment I’m just doing non-contact classes, which combine skipping, shadow boxing, circuits and punch bag work. The latter is incredibly therapeutic after a hard day at work, and the one hour classes are intense and ludicrously sweaty, but over in the blink of an eye.

Aerial Silks

The circus skill I wish I could be better at! Never does my body ache so much the next day than after a silks class. Circus is quite big in Bristol and there are two places (that I know of) that offer beginner silks classes – Circomedia and The Island. Both these companies/venues also offer static trapeze lessons, something else which I’d love to try.

Running

I started running a few years ago and I find that, for me, it’s something that if I don’t do regularly, I find it difficult to get back into. In May I completed the Bristol 10k in my fastest ever time, and although I have run a couple of half marathons in the past, I think it’s a much better distance for me to race and train for. At the moment I’m only going out running once a week max so I’d like to double this. When I feel like I don’t want to lace up my trainers, reading a chapter of Running Like a Girl by Alexandra Heminsley usually spurs me on.

Hula Hooping

After a six week hooping course earlier in the year, which involved circus moves like getting the hoop from our waists to above our heads, I’m now the proud owner of a turquoise and gold hula hoop. I try to use it when I come home from work and hoop for ten minutes each day, but I’ve been so busy that this is currently only happening a couple of times a week.

Self Defence

Probably the most important course I’ve been on, the four week course I took part in this spring was run by Tracy of Brainbox Coaching at my local Sweaty Betty, and didn’t cost a penny. Each week we learnt about the psychology of attackers and victims, what to do in different types of attacks and we even practiced our moves on Tracy’s 6ft, 18st trainer friends, which really gave a realistic sense of what a scary situation might feel like. Tracey and Sweaty Betty will be running more courses in the autumn so if you’re Bristol based this is definitely worth booking on to.

Yoga

I used to go to a free yoga class once a week (also at Sweaty Betty) but haven’t had the time with silks and boxing. I’d love to start again so if any of you have any recommendations for short routines or YouTube classes that I can do for ten minutes in the mornings then please share them in the comments!

Bloglovin |Twitter | Facebook