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5 Places I Am Dying To Visit In Europe

Even though I have recently returned to the UK after three years of gallivanting around mainland Europe, there’s still so much of this beautiful continent that I have left to see that I’m constantly thinking about when my next trip somewhere could be. Maybe a few days in the south of France? Or a brief trip to Dublin?! To be honest, if someone were to tell me to book a trip tomorrow, I’d struggle to choose between all the places I am lusting after right now.

Rome, Italy

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Anyone who knows what happened on my mini euro trip in May will know why I want to visit Rome, but for those of you who don’t, think pizza, pasta, culture and, well, IT’S ROME! I just have all these glorious visions of roaming the streets with some gelato, the sun shining and all of this Italian floating around that I don’t need to understand to enjoy. Doesn’t that sound like perfection?

Provence, France

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I’m constantly kicking myself for not visiting the south of France when I lived in Paris. This is something that has only gotten worse the more invested in travelling I have been and since I discovered Chic Resorts it’s intensified even more. I’ve been eyeing one of their apartments with free standing bath tub with major plans for a glass of wine and a soak after a long day of exploring. Bliss.

Copenhagen, Denmark

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I’ve been wanting to visit Copenhagen for about a year now, and I was offered a free hotel there not so long after I started looking into it, however the flights from Frankfurt to Copenhagen were so expensive that I could never justify going when so many places were cheaper to visit. But that was then. I’ve already spotted several cheap flights from London to Copenhagen and after my mum’s recent day trip there on her cruise, well, it’s as good as a done deal.

Stockholm, Sweden

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Stockholm was never high on my radar until my mum got back from a recent cruise with Princess. They videoed a lot of the cruise and the city stops they made, which meant that guests could relive their experiences at home, but also see some of the excursions they may have passed up on. The city tour excursion in Stockholm had me within seconds and now it’s a firm favourite of mine for an upcoming trip!

Dublin, Italy

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I’ve wanted to visit Dublin ever since I was a teenager, partly because a lot of my family’s heritage comes from Ireland, but also because it looks like an incredible city. Of course, I never bothered with visiting Dublin when we were living elsewhere because it didn’t make any sense spend more money travelling from further away, but now we are going to be stationed in London I am so eager to try and figure out the best way to get to Dublin… not to mention how soon I can do it!

This post was sponsored by Chic Resorts, however all thoughts, opinions and major wanderlustings are my own.

The negative side to weight loss

Lately I’ve been watching Youtubers like velvetgh0st and beautycrush speak up about probably the biggest, yet least talked about, long-term side effect of weight loss and I know from personal experience that it’s the one you’re unlikely to expect.

For a lot of us, weight loss comes with heaps and heaps of benefits. From the joy you feel when fitting into a smaller size for the first time, to feeling healthy and confident in yourself, it’s hard to see how a negative side to weight loss could possibly occur and I personally think that’s half of the danger. Not enough people are talking about it and at a time where a lot of us are taking on a healthier lifestyle, this needs to be a topic that people are more aware of.

The ‘big issue’ that nobody talks about here, is that as you become more aware of your body and shape during weight loss, the more critical you become. Personally, I have never cared more about how much I weigh or how slim I look than I do now that I have lost weight. Whereas before a slight weight fluctuation would go pretty much unnoticed for me, I notice every pound nowadays and I let it bother me a hell of a lot more than I would have previously. And before you tarnish me with a certain type of brush, it’s worth noting that a lot of people who have lost more than a few pounds end up feeling the same once they are in the ‘maintenance’ phase of their weight loss.

Unfortunately, I haven’t found a cure as such for this, but it’s more something that gets easier to handle the longer you deal with it. When I first stopped calorie counting (which, by the way, I don’t recommend) I would have full blown melt downs about the lack of control I had over my diet, which is really absurd because obviously I was and am the only one in charge of my diet. However because I was no longer restricting in the same way, I felt totally ‘out of control’, which is one of the reasons why I do not recommend calorie counting to others.

I’m not writing this to hypocritically say weight loss is bad, because losing weight was one of the best things I did for my overall self confidence and health, but it’s also been a very odd battle for the last couple of years. It’s taken more than a few stern words with myself and a lot of strength from within to overcome certain mindsets you find yourself in. I think this could have been a little better had I not chosen to pursue calorie counting, but I have friends who’ve experienced similar feelings from other diets too.

Personally, I wish there had been even a quarter of the information available for me about this knock on effect, as there was about how to lose weight in the first place, especially when a lot of that is inaccurate and/or promotes unhealthy methods. We would all benefit from more well rounded information being made available to us, particularly when it comes to less obvious aspects of your health, such as mentally and emotionally.

I’ve been wanting to write a post like this for a couple of years now if I’m honest. When I started this blog it was a health and weight loss blog where I shared the methods I used to lose 40lbs in less than a year, however after a very short amount of time I realised that writing about all of this was only promoting unrealistic goals. Not only that, but I began to see that calorie counting was not the holy grail weight loss secret that I once thought it was. It’s actually very restrictive and if you become quite obsessive about things (like me), then it can be a very slippery slope to go down.

Unfortunately, there is no ‘magic method’ to suppressing or banishing the negative feelings you may feel after weight loss, but one of the best things I’ve found is to talk openly with those around you about how you’re feeling. It’s perfectly normal to see yourself as ‘your old self’ or to wonder where to draw the line with weight loss, but it’s less normal to keep these things a secret. So whilst I am in no position to preach to anybody, I do think that by just openly talking about my experience that I am promoting others to consider their own and know that they aren’t alone.

Warm and fuzzy wedding feelings

Yesterday was an amazing day full of love, laughter, tears (of joy) and new memories that I will cherish for a long time to come. Watching my sister marry the love of her life surrounded by all their loved ones was just so bloody special that even my hangover today can’t get rid of the warm and fuzzy feelings!

With my gal pal (and hopefully future sister-in-law!), grandma and mum.

With my sister and brother.

And last but by no means least, the gorgeous bride and groom!