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The Places You Likely Haven’t Thought Of Sleeping During Your Vacation

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What is the bedrock of a positive vacation experience? Is it the place you visit? The people you meet? The food you eat? The places you’d stay? Which one of these, if lost, would render the experience unenjoyable? We’d argue the accommodation. Good quality accommodation where you can rest your head well and recharge your batteries for a full additional day of exploration is part and parcel in enjoying a holiday space you can truly call your own.

However, it’s likely that you haven’t particularly thought about this in the past aside from finding a place which looks clean and nice, is sizeable enough, and is cheap. For some people, the location is what matters, and having a safe place to rest their head is simply a nice addition. It’s for this reason that the backpacking and hotel trade is always popular and enjoyable. However, if you’re getting a little more mature in your tastes and the accommodation means as much to you like the place you inhabit, you should try the following ideas:

Ice Hotels

To stay in an ice hotel sounds like a difficult and challenging experience for many people, especially those who don’t like the cold. While they’re obviously not as warm as a room with central heating, they can be immensely beautiful to stay in and inhabit. These hotels are masterpieces of architecture and ice engineering and deserve to be visited. When visiting Lapland, a magical place in its own right, they could serve as a perfect and beautiful way to feel connected to your local and cold environment.

What’s more, is that the hotel is constructed each year, so you never see a new one twice. Over 1,000 tonnes of ice go into the construction, and as a result, the ‘building’ is sizeable and incredible to witness. Not only that, but the ICEHOTEL 365 has recently been released, the world’s first permanent ice hotel which takes advantage of central heating and is truly a sight to witness. If looking for an impressive entry into your vacation journal, this might be the ‘coolest’ set of pictures you take.

Tree Top Hotels

Tree Top hotels can be perfect if you’re looking for a view that can simply rival any other. Aside from camping, there is no better way to feel interconnected with the nature around you. These hideaway suits can truly give you that perspective over the environment that you need, and that can be especially conducive to a reflective and meditative vacation, perfect if you’re simply looking forward to getting away from it all.

Tree Top hotels often have a low carbon footprint too, meaning that an ethical holiday could simply be right around the corner. This could be perfect if you’re trying to become closer to nature and detoxify after years of city living.

Over time, the simple effort taken to experience new methods of resting up can lead to you acquiring new tastes, finding new more like minded people, or giving yourself that celebratory vacation you truly deserve.

 

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How To Fill The Time While You’re Traveling

What a lot of people don’t tell you about traveling is that it isn’t all fun. Although you get to explore some incredible cities and see new things every day, there are times when you’re waiting around for a bus or sitting on a dark train through the night or trying to get over jet lag at 3AM in an uncomfortable hostel room bed, and at those times, traveling really doesn’t seem like as much fun as it’s cracked up to be! Here are some tips to help you get through the hardest and loneliest parts of traveling the world…

Start Reading

There’s nothing better than an e-reader to get you through some rough times. Download your favourite books to dive into whenever you feel a little blue – try Harry Potter or the Game of Thrones series for exciting reads that you’ll be able to dip in and out of. Not only will it provide you with something to do, but if you don’t feel like talking to anyone then reading is a surefire way to tell them that you’re busy and to back off.

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Get A Streaming App

Streaming apps can enable you to watch movies and TV shows on your devices, whether that’s your smartphone or your tablet. Being able to watch a half-hour comedy on your tablet with your headphones on underneath your sheets as the hostel you’re staying in will help you feel a little more grounded and it’ll put you in a much better mood. ShowBox is a popular app among Android users – the latest version APK download link is here if you want to check it out. Just remember to take an extra charger so your devices don’t run out of juice too quickly.

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Plan Your Trip

One of the best things to do if you feel a little bored and down is to start planning the next phase of your trip. Even if you’re about to head home, why not start a list of the next countries that you plan to visit? If you’re feeling a little lost and you miss your friends and family at home, opening up your guidebook and deciding what attractions and cities you want to visit next will remind you why you wanted to start traveling to begin with. It’s also a good idea to start looking at your budget to make sure that you have a decent money situation – you want to make sure that you can travel in financial comfort.

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Make Friends

Finally, use any moments of loneliness to start making new friends. Other people traveling will be remarkably friendly and could prove to be friends for life – and even if they’re only backpacking friends, that’s okay too. Some people are perfect to have as friends for a certain part of your life before parting with goodwill towards each other. Strike up conversations with people who seem friendly but make sure that you stay on your guard and remember that if any situation makes you feel uncomfortable it’s totally okay to remove yourself from it.

Favourite things

We all have our passions and our favourite things in life.

I think I have always made it clear with all those who know me, that nature and medieval / gothic buildings are close to my heart; my inspiration. It kind of ties in with why I enjoy traveling so much, and why it is one of the few things in life which relaxes me and make feel at ease.

Fact: at least two thirds of my photos on social media cover these topics,  so don’t act surprise on what you are about to read!

When I bought my 300 year old house,one of the things I fell in love with is the courtyard. Although not huge in size, it is very homey and it had one gorgeous tree which flowers so many times a year. It felt like it was my own private garden. I was so happy to have found such a serene and beautiful place.

In the past 3 years, I have kept the yard as green as I could, considering that I work full-time and my gardening knowledge is not the best around. I have maintained and kept alive all the plants which came with the house and added a few new ones too!

Too many times, I have had tea outside, admiring the calm and peace of my safe place. At times, even birds came by.  My little peace of heaven!

bougainvilleaBut this week, the unthinkable has happened. My beautiful bougainvillea tree was snapped from the bottom of its trunk due to the winter winds. And now, I feel like I have lost a part of me. I must say, it has been a shitty start to the new year. The courtyard feels so empty now, and what’s worse is that I have spent three days chopping down this gorgeous healthy, full grown tree. It’s painful that I have to do this; putting it into boxes for the bin-man to take away in the morning.

And for those who think I am being dramatic, imagine that your favourite thing in the world is broken and is irreplaceable. (you will not find the exact replica) How would you feel then?

Musicians who have left us in 2016

What a year it has been – So many musicians and singers I hold close to my heart have passed away. It is, hard to believe – From this perspective, 2016 has been an awful year.

Finger crossed that I won’t have to update this list before year ends… 6 days to go.

David Bowie:

1-david-bowieAt the age of 69, David Bowie has left us after an 18 month battle with cancer. He has left this private from a lot of people, including a number of his close friends. Just before passing away, Bowie has just released his 25th studio album. Many fans have discovered a lot of hints about his illness and death in songs from his new album. It feels like he was ready to die, and let the world know what he was going through and struggling with in secret.

This particular announcement has shocked me to my core, considering that I have always had a wish to experience David Bowie in a concert. Although he was no longer younger, it never crossed my mind that my dream would never happen.

Prince:

Prince Rogers Nelson has been taken to hospital after his plane had to make an emergency landing. According to the reporters, this was due to the singer suffering from flu. Prince died in his recording studio at 57 years old; known for classic songs such as Purple Rain, Kiss and Little Red Corvette.

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Pete Burns:

Although in the last couple of years he has become more renowned due to his extreme plastic surgeries, Pete Burns, the singer of Dead or Alive has given us a music hit who everyone, young or old has heard and enjoyed; You Spin Me Round. Pete died at 57 after suffering a “massive cardiac arrest”.

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I will always remember watching a snippet from his interview on Channel 5, and he says: “The number of surgeries I’ve had is probably 300. I hope when I’m 80 and I get to heaven God doesn’t recognise me.”
Although he was so vain, and I would never dare touch up my face like this, I always thought that he has a great sense of humour!

Rick Parfitt

If you are into rock music, you would have heard of Status Quo – Rick is a guitar legend and has done the band proud. If you do not know who I am talking about, have a listen at “In the army now” or “Rockin’ All Over the World”. Although he has not been performing with the band due to his age, he will be missed sorely by the band members and fans. He was in a Spanish hospital after he fell ill from a serious infection.

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George Michael

The youngest of them all, at the age of 53, has died peacefully at his home on Christmas day. After massive success with his band WHAM!, he has managed to continue his solo career for a long time, and it is estimated that he sold more than 80 million records worldwide.

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Over-tiredness

For the last 3 weeks, I have AGAIN started to struggle with lack of sleep, and/or waking up at random hours of the night. Sometime between 2 and 3 AM seems to be a regular nowadays (even if I sleep after midnight… ugh!).

My body-clock is broken.

And despite this, I have to wake up 6AM latest during the week because I am in work at 7AM; less traffic and parking stress this way.

I have been trying to find a solution for my restless nights as I am becoming overtired now, and still for some reason, I don’t get a full night of sleep. Seems like I am stressed beyond repair.
– I exercise or go for a walk to get my body tired
– Don’t get all worked up and pissed off at people towards sleep time aka alone & quiet time
– Drink Camomile / Herbal tea – Maybe it is time to quit coffee all over again? (I only drink this in the mornings)
– Read before I sleep
– Listen to relaxing music
– Nice, long, bubbly, warm baths before bed

Seems like that none of this is helping, even if I do a combination of two or more.

The more I think about it, the worse it gets.

I am getting frustrated and annoyed, and I can’t figure out a way forward.

Wish I could switch off my brain and my feelings for a few hours a day… Maybe that would do the trick… But I guess I am not a cyborg (half human half machine), so that cannot happen effortlessly.

Rant done.
Over and out.

I Miss You

As a person who thinks a lot, my mind dwells… Especially in the middle of the night when I can’t sleep… How awful is that? 😉

Well last night, I made a ground-breaking discovery; It might be nothing unusual for some, but in my case it helps me understand myself and others around me better.

When someone says I miss you, how often is it meaningful, and how often is it just a conversation filler? These words are so often overused, that they tend to lose their meaning just like when you say I love you every five minutes. It has become such a habit for people to say it, that you just never know when it is truthful or not. Besides, what are you supposed to say when someone says this to you? Oh yeah… I miss you too.

I have also realised, that there are two kinds of “I miss you”

  • There’s the I miss you when I am bored and lonely
    So basically, this is when you are bored in work, or at home and have nothing better to do. So you would miss certain people in your life. Perhaps a good friend or someone important to you.
  • There’s the I miss you when I am busy and having lots of fun
    The nicest kind of I miss you, as you are thinking of certain people while you are having a blast – You are having such a lovely time, yet you feel something is missing and you wish that person is there to enjoy it with you. True affection, need I say more?

I have never been the kind of person who overuses such phrases.

I am a romantic, I love literature, I think I am passionate and quite an emotional person with the right people.my

This in mind;
I make sure that when I say these words, I mean them.
When I say these words, I am genuine.
And I do not expect a mutual agreement.
Because… you should say such words not to seek attention, but because that is how you feel.

And Relax: How To Create An In-House Spa Experience

spa_relax_flowersImage credit: Unsplash

We all love those weekends away at a spa. Whether you take your Mom or go with a group of girls, there’s nothing more relaxing than being treated and pampered for a few nights. But busy schedules, money and getting everyone together at the same time doesn’t make it easy to treat ourselves to a lot of them. So why not bring those blissful spa vibes into your own home as well. With a few clever ideas you can create an in-house spa that will ensure you feel relaxed every weekend. Here are some ideas to get you started.

An At-Home Steam Shower

If budget permits and it’s time you renovated your bathroom, why not consider investing in a plush steam shower at home? With advanced technology, it has never been easier to install a steam shower or steam bath into your property. Steam showers can include overhead rain showers, hand-held showers, built-in music, LED  lighting, and even foot massagers. And of course, they enable you to create a hot steamy retreat in your bathroom. Jet systems and steam generators will create the ultimate in-house Turkish bath experience. Cutting edge technology will allow you to feel revived and refreshed in the morning and let you wind down and relax at night. Benefits of a steam shower include improved circulation and recovery after exercise. They also promote healthier, clearer skin by opening up the pores.

A Personal Massage Chair

For the ultimate relaxing experience why not invest in a massage chair for your home? Shiatsu chairs offer everything from Yoga and Chiro programs to Swedish and Shiatsu massage treatments. You may never need the services of a spa again! They are a great way to loosen up muscles and unwind in the evening or on the weekend. If you don’t have the space for a massage chair, you could consider getting a massage cushion instead. Many cushions also come with heat facilities, vibrations and built in rollers too. These are perfect for those times when your muscles need kneading, and there’s no time to book in for a treatment.

Luxury Products

Of course, no in-house spa would be complete without spa experience products. Brands such as Elemis and Decleor offer many super luxurious products that are also used in their very own spas. Decleor products are focused on essential oils, skincare rituals, and innovative treatments. And they also happen to smell delicious too. So if you want the scent of a spa in your home, it’s always worth investing in some high-end products too. Choose everything from bubble baths to body scrubs and body milks to facial night balms for the ultimate in-house spa experience. If you are doing a facial treatment, always keep a few hot towels close by for wiping off oils, just like they do at the spa. Simply soak the towels in hot water then wring them out before use. Adding essential oils to the water will also add an extra spa-like touch to your treatment. For lots more beauty tips follow the click.

Ambiance

To top of your at home spa don’t forget to include a fluffy bathrobe, Egyptian cotton towels and a pair of sleek slippers too. And soothing music and scented candles go a long way to creating a blessed out ambiance too. Engage your senses with relaxing scents, soft touches and calming sounds to feel like you are in a plush spa, even when you’re at home.

What’s Up

My blog is a priority to me, however there are times and things that surpass my blogs. Such things are travelling and starting a new job; which in this case are very, very true.

In the last month and a half, I have taken time travel and in total I have visited 5 countries in almost 3 weeks. This has not only led me to learn new things about different cultures and do plenty of sightseeing, but also helped into finding myself again. To me, traveling is the very best thing. It is new and exciting… an adventure!

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For more photos of my travels and my endeavors please follow me on Instagram: SteffiWorld.

After making it back to Malta, I have spent a few days catching up with friends, doing the laundry and relaxing. This is because two weeks ago, it was time for me to change my job. This time, my role is Reporting Specialist, which is highly focused on reporting – gathering data and specs, creating the reports and reconciling. It is a very exciting role as there are a lot of changes going on, and my role is a part of it, and in two years time, I am hoping to see myself in a managerial position. I have been aiming for this for some time, and it has gone unnoticed in my past job, so I am very happy to be in this position now.

I have noticed in the past weeks, that my followers on WordPress have been increasing exponentially which is great to say the least. While I would like to welcome you all to my humble blog of anything that comes to mind, I would also like to excuse myself for the lack of writing, and hope that going forward I will have more energy to entertain you!

Compliments

I am not a person who accepts compliments easily and for various reasons
– Lack of self confidence
– People are more often than not, not genuine, and compliment you out of sarcasm, or simply to compliment them back
– Just awkward, especially when it is a random unknown person

Lets take an example of what has happened today. I got home right after work, 15 minutes before the shops close, I realised I forgot to buy something I needed for the day so I dressed up in the first thing I found nearby and went out. In the next 10 minutes, I was “complimented” by 3 strangers; two regarding my hair, and another regarding my general appearance.
In my eyes (or in my head, because I didn’t look in the mirror!), these adjectives sounded like they were untrustworthy, and were simply said in attempt to get my attention.

When I am feeling upset, or perhaps I am having a bad day, these words give me a bit of a boost… but on average I pretend that I have not heard a thing and keep walking. Well, even if I were to accept such words, should I just keep muttering thank you to  each and every non-creepy looks legit enough person?

 

Age, is the question.

When I was much younger, think – early teenage years, I used to believe that being 18 years old was old. Because you know, you are officially an adult, you can drive, you can vote… you name it! When I got to the age of 18, I was worried on how I will feel when I am no longer a teenager. 10 years later, I am terrified of the idea of being 30!

This time three years ago, I was a very busy bee. Why you ask? I was in the process of buying property for the first time, as after 3 years I was tired of stuffing my money in rental properties and having nothing to show for it!

What I didn’t know was, how time consuming and difficult it is to find a place you love, in a town you like and with all the specs you wanted. In the end I settled for a 2 bedroom house, with a yard and a cellar. Almost three years down the road, and I do not know how much money I have put into the house, but I cannot say that it is ready. Truth be told, I haven’t gone down in the cellar for over 2 years, and I have changed my mind on what  I want to do with it a dozen of times.
First I thought I wanted a spa Jacuzzi and a gym area, then I thought a library dungeon sort of thing, and now I think I am settling for a cinema / bar area combo. Needless to say, this project would cost A LOT of money. Money which I still don’t have… and by the time I get to do it, I would probably think that this current idea will not fit my lifestyle (due to age, situation, who knows!)

As rime goes by, I wonder. What makes us who we are? What changes us? Is it age and experiences themselves, is it people? Or is it just us looking for something new…. for a new project or challenge?