Dear Nervous Traveller,

I should have just titled this post as “Dear Rachel”. The truth, is I’m nervous, to an extent I feel like I’m scared of everything.

I am very easily stressed and overwhelmed. But I guess, to me, there is a lot to be nervous about;  of course, taking “the plunge” is scary. The fear of quitting your job, the fear of the unknown, the fear of running out of money..

The bottom line I think, is that there will always be something to be afraid of, something that tries to hold you back. I have always toyed with the idea of travel but I would never, ever consider doing it on my own. I feel very fortunate to have met someone who wants to take this journey with me. Regardless, full-time travel is going to be a challenge.

Irrespective of all the fears you have, take baby steps. Crawl if you must, but make sure you are moving forward.

Accept now that not everything is going to go as planned. As you move further forward and get ever closer, that fear turns into excitement.

Do research. Make a list and cross things off so you can see you’re making solid progress. I started a list about ten days ago and it lists everything from cancelling my car payments, to organising our leaving do, to getting a haircut.

Last week there was a list of 28 things on that list. I have crossed off 5 things in the space of a week, that in itself brings me some comfort.

Have you ever heard the saying “if it scares you, it might be a good things to try”? The key thing in that sentence is the word “might”. It suggests surpassing yourself, surprising yourself and going out of your comfort zone, because taking risks and going outside of your comfort zone is probably where you find you have the best experiences.

Like anything you learn in life, things take practice. Just trust yourself and get yourself out there!

Rach x


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Thrunton Woods

Hi again

Hope everyone had a lovely weekend.

If you’ve seen our Photography page, you might have seen we went for a spontaneous walk around Thrunton Woods on Saturday. We did a very quick last-minute rush around Asda, bought some yellow-sticker pasta pots, Craig’s treat (I know, how romantic), and set off for the 45 minute drive up the road.

I took my new Merrell walking shoes out for a spin, probably not the best idea as it was a bit boggy and I didn’t realise they weren’t waterproof. Lesson #1 of the day – always waterproof your hiking shoes. My favourite spray to use is the Nubuck & Suede Proofer from Mountain Warehouse as it maintains breathability for your shoes (and other items of clothing) as well as adding that extra protection seal to avoid any oil/dirt stains. Me and Craig bought our shoes specifically for the reason that they are ventilated hiking shoes, so this is ideal, also a little spray goes a long way so it’s good value for money.

We wanted to do Long Crag at the woods and we thought that we knew a shortcut to get there as we wanted to get to the top before the sunset; turns out that it was a shorter route, but the grass was up to my waist and it was quite wet/muddy, so it took us quite a while to get through  (Craig lost his shoes in the mud, twice!). Lesson #2 of the day – shortcuts aren’t always quicker.

I’m having a bit of an issue with my knees at the minute so high kneeing through waist high grass and heather was an absolute killer, so when we conquered our “shortcut” and I saw the crag ahead my whole body just said “no f*cking way are you going up there”. However (I don’t know if you ever do this when you’re on a walk), if I get so far and think I can’t go any further or that I can’t do it, I just look behind me and think “I did that”; it’s a great way to motivate yourself when you’re not feeling 100%. Simple, yet effective.

Anyway, getting up the crag was surprisingly easy, I didn’t have to do high knees. We spent a bit of time at the top having food, coffee and photo opportunities. Craig didn’t have a fork for his pasta pot so instead of waiting for me to finish with mine, he ate the entire thing using the lid of the pasta pot (genius, I know). The funny part came when we went to open the flask to have a drink of coffee and a little metal spoon was folded up inside the flask that could have been used instead. There is definitely a Lesson #3 of the day in there somewhere but I can’t seem to word it properly…

After our yellow sticker pasta, some coffee and after getting some photos and videos at Long Crag (my phone died 2 minutes in to the walk so Craig did all the photo taking, which is probably a good thing as I’m rubbish at taking pictures (Lesson #4 of the day – be prepared, buy a decent in-car phone charger for that little boost so your phone has enough battery to last the day)), we made the wise decision to descend before it got too dark, as the sun was starting to set.

It did get dark very quickly but we made it onto even ground before it was pitch black, luckily Craig had enough battery and has a little torch on his phone (Lesson #5 of the day – always pack a torch) so we managed to navigate ourselves back to the main road. As I am obviously a master of navigation, I said to Craig that we had to turn right out of the car park and go up the road to get to my car; after walking for approximately 25 minutes there was no sign of my car, and by this point we couldn’t even see our hands in front of our faces. We then backtracked to where we started and instead went left, and the car was literally, 100m down the road, so I’m not as much of a master navigator compared to Craig, who can tell exactly where we are by looking at a tree.. Lesson #6 of the day – download an app onto your phone so you can mark where you parked your car. I have since downloaded a very originally named app called “CarFinder”, I will let you know what it’s like the next time I need to use it.

There was also some other lessons learned; one being, bring two of everything. I felt like I was very unorganised for this walk but in all fairness I was told it was going to be a nice stroll, we weren’t expecting bogs and high grass and all the rest, so I think we did extremely well under the circumstances! But in future I will always pack an extra pair of socks, some waterproof trousers, and an extra pair of gloves, as Craig’s were HUGE on mine (photo to follow…)

We had an amazing day and those views at the top were worth it all in the end. I’d recommend walks in Northumberland to anyone, it really is full of hidden gems.

Rach x

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and so the adventure begins..

Happy New Year everyone!

Hope you all had a wonderful Christmas break. We had a lovely lazy break, was lush for me and Craig to spend some time off together, as I hadn’t taken annual leave since April 2016, so it was a much needed break for both of us.

Isn’t it crazy how we can look back a year ago and realise how much everything has changed? The amount of people that have left our lives, entered, and stayed; as I said in my previous post, 2016 was a year of change and new beginnings for me, and I get more and more excited every day.

I am trying to focus as much as I can on saving, as money is my biggest worry for the journey ahead. The majority of our days will be spent doing things that cost us nothing, for example, we bought a National Trust Membership (£30 a year for under 25’s) so there is a huge list of beautiful places we can visit that will cost us nothing. We also have our PS4’s and the gym, I also got a Kindle for Christmas so I will be doing a lot of reading, I’m currently reading The Passage Trilogy by Justin Cronin which is AMAZING. Recommend to anyone who likes the sound of a post-apocalyptic sci-fi horror.

Anyway, it’s now 2017, and you know what that means? WE ARE TRAVELLING THIS YEAR!

100 days today will be my last day at work before the big adventure starts, we have a lot of planning to do in the meantime and we are both raring to get started.

Whoever is reading this, may 2017 bring you an abundance of amazing opportunities, unforgettable moments and wonderful experiences. May you be brave enough to take on and overcome rewarding challenges. May you find yourself in high spirits and good health and may you always be filled with the strength and hope necessary to make your dreams a reality.

Rach x




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My turn!


I feel like it would be rude not to introduce myself; I’m Rachel, also known as “his Sheila”. I’m 24 and from North-East England. I’ll hopefully be posting often, most likely it will be food related posts… You will come to learn that I am a bit of a foodie (understatement of the year).

I always tend to think I’ve led a very ordinary life with extraordinary hopes and dreams. Don’t get me wrong, I have the most wonderful and supportive family, and my best friends are 10x cooler than your best friends. However I have never been one for taking risks, I occasionally do something a little rash/outside the box (I did a sky dive once…), but once it’s over, the fire in my belly extinguishes and things go back to normal, and I settle back to my ordinary life and my “okay” job and life goes on.

Why did I settle? Because “okay” is comfortable. It pays the bills, gives us a roof over our heads and lets us go out on Friday pay day to enjoy happy hour and such like.

However, I decided to step out of my comfort zone 9 months ago, and decided to meet this guy I’d been talking to online (there is a bit of background, but I’ll go into that another time), and this guy made me realise everything that “okay” isn’t; “okay” isn’t exciting or thrilling, it isn’t the reason you want to get out of bed in the morning. 

Since I met Craig (“this guy” has a name), my eyes have been opened. All of a sudden there is a world of opportunity out there, and I… no,  we, can seize these opportunities.

So I hand in my notice at my “okay” job, put myself out there and take a risk (or two). I now have an amazing job as a project contractor that has opened a lot of doors, and me and Craig are both going to pack in everything, hop on a plane and travel South East Asia and Australia, leaving from Manchester on the 18th April 2017 (4 months this Sunday! He thinks it’s dragging, I think the time is flying by.)

So, I guess what I’m trying to say is, look around you and inside yourself. How many people do you think are settling? I’ll tell you. A lot, and I mean a lot of people.

But take it from me, “okay” or “settling” will never be the reason that you risk absolutely everything, for the smallest chance that something extraordinary could happen.

If I could give any advice, it would be to follow your dreams, and never stop trying to surprise yourself.

I’ll hopefully do another post before Christmas, however I’m very busy with work and spending infinite amounts of money on Christmas presents. If not,  I hope you all have a magical Christmas.

Rach x



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