Wednesday, 28 December 2016

My Top 5 Books of 2016

As 2016 comes to a close (thank god), I've been looking back at all of the books I read this year. Whilst I haven't enjoyed the books I read this year as much as I normally do, I definitely read some amazing novels. My Goodreads challenge was to read 52 books (a book a week) and I'm currently at 51 and will hopefully finish another before the new year. As usual, I've picked some of my favourites to talk about. If it's one of your new years resolutions to read more in 2016 then I'd really recommend these books as I found them all to be really gripping. And don't forget to click here and here to read my tips on how to read more books!


Ways To Die In Glasgow by Jay Stringer - I love a good murder mystery book but a murder mystery books set in a city I'm familiar with? Sold! This is the first of Jay's books that I've read but I really enjoyed it. The characters are all 'very Glasgow' ( ;) ) and it was awesome to read about the different parts of the city. This book was also staged with alternate characters narrating alternate chapters which is a writing style that I really enjoy. I wasn't able to guess any of the twists which helped build up the suspense meaning that it was one I just couldn't put down. 

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Saturday, 24 December 2016

2016 In Travel

2016 has been a pretty awful year. But on the positive side, I managed to visit 5 new countries this year which has been a fantastic experience. My goal is to try and visit as many countries as possible but ideally, I'd also like to reach a point where the number of countries I've visited is higher than my age. On reflection, the countries that I visited this year were all amazing and I'm so grateful for the privilege of travel. Hopefully, 2017 will be even better!






The Netherlands

In February I took a mini break to Amsterdam with my blogging buddy Morag. We wandered around the canals, visited the Anne Frank House, ate some delicious food and saw some interesting exhibits at the Museum of Sex. I also managed to squeeze in an afternoon trip to Leiden, a nearby city that I totally fell in love with. The Netherlands has been at the top of my travel bucket list for quite some time and I had a total blast ticking it off. 

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Wednesday, 21 December 2016

An Edinburgh Christmas

There isn't really so much of a 'point' to this post other than 'I really love Edinburgh at Christmas time and therefore I really want to show it off'. Is that going to be a problem? No? Good.

Edinburgh at Christmas really is just something else. When I live outside the city the festive season wasn't complete without a train journey into town for a visit to the Christmas markets. Now that I'm lucky enough to call Edinburgh home, I'm literally a 30-minute walk away and can go whenever I want!

This year the market is so big that it stretches across the Princes Street Gardens, St Andrews Square and even onto George Street. These photos were all taken at the gardens but the ice rink can be found at St Andrews Square. I went ice skating with my friends recently and I'm glad to report that no-one fell over! I was super proud of all of us. 

I just love wandering around the market, peering at all the stalls. And the food. The smell is quite frankly amazing, there's nothing else like it!

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Sunday, 18 December 2016

The Whistle Stop Barber Shop, Edinburgh

I'm very lucky that both of my high school best friends now live in Edinburgh. We are all very different in our studies but we try to see each other every few weeks for a catch up. And that's almost always over food. So a few weeks ago we ended up eating at The Whistle Stop Barber Shop. This restaurant/bar has been open for a while and it's cool decor has always caught my eye whilst walking past. My friend had visited before with her husband and on her recommendation, we all went back together.


This was my opportunity to try out the infamous American dish: chicken and waffles. At Whistle Stop they're serving up buttermilk chicken - which makes the meat really tender and gives it a much stronger flavour. I'd agree that it works really well with the maple syrup but I felt that the waffles were a bit odd. They didn't seem fresh and weren't warm either. On the plus side, the portion size was massive. Considering this is intended as a starter/sharer you're definitely getting your money's worth. 

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Wednesday, 14 December 2016

5 Things To Do in Boston


After only spending a few days there this summer, Boston has became one of my favourite cities. I cannot wait to go back as I think it is a wonderful city and these are so many things to see and do. I've written this guide of 5 things to do in Boston in the hope of convincing others to visit. These were some of my personal highlights from my time in the city. I'd really recommend Boston for anyone with an interest in American history. After visiting both New York and Boston I have to admit I preferred Boston! I cannot recommend it enough!


Take a tour of the Freedom Trail.

Boston has a very rich history and therefore, there is so much to learn. The Freedom Trail stretches 2.5 miles through Boston passing many historic locations. You can walk the trail yourself but many companies offer walking tours and the guides are extremely knowledgeable so it's worth the investment.
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Sunday, 11 December 2016

Christmas Gift Guide - For Students

Ah Christmas. And the age old dilemma of what presents to buy for people. I have to admit that the older I get, the more boring my requests get too. These days if someone asks me what I want for Christmas the answer is more likely to be something like 'new pyjamas' than anything exciting. I've written a few gift guides before but this year I thought I'd do a student focused one. Presents that I like to receive are generally things that I wouldn't buy for myself and things like these definitely fit into that category!

Christmas Gift Guide - For Students

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Wednesday, 7 December 2016

October and November Reading Wrap Up

As I only read one book in October I thought it would be best just to save it and write a combined reading wrap up this month instead! Thankfully November has been a much busier reading month for me and I'm now back on track for achieving my goal of reading 52 books this year. I can't believe that we're already this far through the year. Although seriously aren't we all really excited for 2016 to be over? I know I am! Here are the books I've read recently and what I thought of them!


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Sunday, 4 December 2016

Christmas Memories

December is now well under way and it's only 21 days until Christmas! Now that I'm older and spend the majority of Christmas time away from home it's gotten me thinking more about the Christmas traditions that I've had grown up. Whilst I have really fond memories of all of my family's traditions it's also been a blast creating new ones with my friends too. I'm buried under work at the moment (who invented Christmas exams?) but that won't stop me from sharing some of my favourite Christmas memories and traditions this festive season.


The Edinburgh Christmas market - Growing up so close to Edinburgh meant that the Christmas market was always a pretty big part of the festive season! I love walking around the market in the cold and seeing all the bright lights and interesting stalls. And with all the delicious food it always smells amazing! And every year it feels like it gets bigger and bigger. It now expands over the Princes Street Gardens and St Andrew's Square. My favourite stalls are probably all the dessert ones and the stall that sells the flavoured coffee beans. They both smell amazing.
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