Travel writing

I've just started writing for a couple more travel sites. Please check my work out at:

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Decs and the City

This is just a quick post to say I've been spending most of my recent blogging time building up Decs and the City. I set it up a while ago but have really got back into the world of interior design since me and The Boy bought a house.

Head on over to DecsInTheCity.blogspot.com to find out what I've got to say about the world of interiors. You won't be disappointed.


Cycle free

Thanks to the wonder that is Freecycle I recently became the somewhat bemused owner of the feeblest excuse for an exercise bike I believe has ever existed.

It looks like two metal hangers have been welded together and then a saddle and feeble mile counter has been added.
I'm not knocking it though. Far from it. It was free after all.

Now when it's too dark for me to run and the gym isn't open yet, I can get on the bike instead. Or I can read or watch TV and DVDs of my choosing while working out. Brilliant!

The first time I used it my fiancé and I got quite concerned because we could smell burning. After checking the oven out and not finding any burning food, we started searching for other possible culprits. After a few minutes we realised it was the bike! I really wasn't even working out that hard but it was absolutely boiling. Opps.

This isn't the only great thing I've got through Freecycle though. I've also acquired stacks of wedding magazines, and given away loads of stuff as well. I can't recommend it enough.

Image by Sean Et Cetera

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Portfolio update

Hi all,

This is just a quick post to point you towards some great projects I've been involved with at The Creative Corporation recently. Check them out by clicking the links below:

I hope you are all enjoying the run-up to Christmas.


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Quorn is mince for the health-conscious

A couple of months ago I went veggie for the third time after being subjected to the film Fast Food Nation.

When I've been a vegetarian in the past I have struggled to eat healthily, finding that most vegetarian options were heavy on the cheese or fat. This time around I have been finding it much easier, as the number of healthy vegetarian options as definitely increased.

The other night though my lovely Mummy (who we're living with post travelling) cooked us shepherd's pie with low fat Quorn mince and we were all really impressed, even the non-veggies at the table! It's much better and more realistic than it used to be.

The cold weather lends itself to mince-based dishes such as chilli, spaghetti bolognaise and shepherd's pie, but if you're concerned about the fat content of real mince then why not pick up a packet of Quorn instead? It has far less fat and is uncannily close to the real deal.

Image by arimoore

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International woman of yoga

It has been a while since I last blogged, but that is mainly due to the fact that I have been travelling for the last three months. The boy and I went to Japan, Sydney, New Zealand, Chile, Peru and Brazil, and we had an awesome time.

Running around the world
You may think that my exercise regime suffered as a result of the trip, but thankfully that wasn't the case. While we were in Japan, Australia and New Zealand I kept my running up, and it was actually really good fun, because I would use my runs to do a bit of sight-seeing.

I ran around Tokyo's parks, Hiroshima's Memorial Park, Lake Fuji, Sydney's harbours and around loads of beautiful lakes in New Zealand, including in the gorgeous Queenstown.

When we arrived in South America though things changed. As we were to be spending lots of time at high altitude, and there are lots of areas of questionable safety, I decided to skip the running and posted my trainers home.

I still managed to keep fit though, thanks to the
YOGAmazing video podcast. Hosted by Chaz Rough it is a weekly podcast that focuses on an different issue every episode. Users email their proposed themes to Chaz, who then creates a class around that theme. Past classes have included Yoga for Running, PMS, Legs, Depression, Upper Body Strength and Clarity.

Thanks to Chaz and his video podcast I practiced yoga all over the world, as I also used the podcast before we arrived in South America.
It is a simple but brilliant idea, because it means that you never get bored of the same familiar routines, as can be the case with yoga DVDs.

I can't recommend it enough and suggest that anyone with even the slightest interest in yoga checks it out.

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Thank you London, and good night

I did it! A few weeks before Christmas I was offered a place to run the London marathon for a cancer charity and on Sunday I crossed a finish line I had been working towards for the last couple of years really.

I ran steadily for the first 20 miles and then mixed power-walking and running for the last six miles, because I didn't want to hit "the wall" at that crucial stage. I'm pleased to say I didn't hit it at all throughout the whole race.

The crowds were really great but it was my support team, and thinking of my beloved Bonnie that got me through those 26.2 miles. So thanks to Fiancé Dan, Mum, Dad, Bro Dan, Trish, David, Jon and Mini. Thanks also to everyone who called, text and Facebooked me, watched me on the TV, and especially to all of those of you who sponsored me and who put up with all my marathon chat over the last few months. It was the thought of all your support that got me round.

So the race itself? Well the weather was mixed. At the start I thought I might get sunburn, but at mile 20 I thought I was so cold I was blotchy and thought I might get frostbite.

The course wound its way through residential parts of London for about 75 per cent of the course, and the bands, kids, Morris dancers, St John's ambulance crews etc were awesome. The residential scenery started to get a bit boring after a while, but just when I needed a kick up the arse we passed Tower of London, and the Gherkin rose in the distance.

And then I was on the home straight. First the Houses of Parliament appeared on the horizon and I knew I was nearly there. The crowd along the Embankment were awesome, and thanks so much to the ladies I saw from my charity at the point, that was encouragement indeed. On The Eye I could see people watching us and then we turned past Westminster Abbey and onto Birdcage Walk.

I couldn't believe it when I saw the "400 metres to go" sign. I really went for it then. Steamed alongside Buckingham Palace where I saw a very hoarse Dan, then I saw my Mum, Dad and Bro in the grandstand and knew I'd done it. Arms in the air I crossed that finish line thinking of Bonnie.

She is the reason I did this. Running that marathon didn't bring her back, but hopefully the money you've helped me raise will bring cancer research that little bit further along so that other families won't have to go through losing anyone or any pet. I'm currently on £870 and would just love to make it to £1000.

I have a few more weeks to collect my money and I simply beg you to dig deep to get me that bit further up. I went, I ran, I bled, sweated and cried. Please, please help me raise that final £130. And in case you don't already know, you do that by going to www.justgiving.com/bonniebarnhouse. Thanks guys.

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