Saturday, June 10, 2017

The Brontë Parsonage

Well, we’ve reached the final installment of my England travel series. At this point, I don’t even know what I will be writing about next week. I saved the best for last. I have wanted to go on this trip ever since I took a seminar course on the Brontës. I lucked out because an English friend of mine happened to be in England at the same time as me. We decided to meet up and do this trip together!
Haworth is where the Brontës lived for most of their life. Haworth itself is picture-esque, and we grew more and more excited as we approached the parsonage.


 An incredible amount of care is taken to make sure the parsonage is replicated as close to what it was when the Brontës actually lived there. They have everything down to the wallpaper. It is amazing.


There were a few extremely nerdy parts of this walk through. For example, this blurry picture is their table where an E is carved in the surface. E as in Emily Brontë. As in, Emily Brontë carved this. AH!


A really cool thing we got to take part in was a transcript project. Wuthering Heights is the only novel where the original manuscript wasn’t found. An artist has set up an opportunity for visitors of the parsonage museum to write a line of the novel. Essentially, we’re writing our own transcript.


Another nerdy moment is the handkerchief stained with Anne Brontë’s blood. I realized it’s kind of creepy, but I still became excited about it.


The biggest point on our list was to do the hike up to Wuthering Heights. It’s called Top Withins. The midway point is the Brontë waterfall. The waterfall isn’t all that impressive, but it makes for a great rest stop on this 12km hike up and down the hills.


Finally, we made it. It was so wonderful. Now, there are buildings that match the home in Wuthering Heights more accurately, but once you stand up there, you know that this is the spot Emily Brontë is describing. We sat up there for a long time and read passages from the novel. Every time the wind was mentioned, the wind would pick up. I think Emily Brontë was with us that day.


This was one of the best (and nerdiest) experiences I have ever had. I am so happy to have shared this with a friend. I felt bad for Matt and that fact that he was dragged along, but he liked how enthralled we were. The walk to Top Withins was tough, but so worth it if you’re a Brontë fan. I would highly suggest this trip to anyone who wants to know a little more about the classic British women writers. I’m still happy about it.

What is the nerdiest trip you’ve ever been on?


-Daniella

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Conisbrough Castle and York

I am shmooshing (I made that word up) two trips together since one was small and one lacked pictures. We went to Conisbrough Castle on the way to York, and it was wonderful. York is, of course, my favourite place in the entire world. I can’t wait to share it with you!

Conisbrough Castle


One of my things on my list was to see a castle. I mean, how could you not? I love castles so much. If anyone remembers my Instagram from when I was away, you’ll remember that I kept joking about building my own. I love it.


Conisbrough Castle is not a fully constructed castle anymore. It is in ruins, but it is just as beautiful. It’s on a hill, so the views from the single tower are stunning. The whole experience of the castle is done so well. They had videos that explained the different rooms in the tower. The interpretation boards had cartoons that are great for kids (and people who don’t really have an interest in the history of the castle).


There are also so many nooks and crannies to explore. It was so much fun to wander around. I guess that’s the benefit of having a castle in ruins. This was an amazing half-day excursion. I’m definitely considering getting the Heritage pass when I’m living here in the future just so I can get into as many castles as I want!

York


I honestly don’t have much to tell you about York. Matt works there now, so we did more of a “Matt’s life in York” tour. I love walking around. It’s just so stunning.


The one thing we did differently was visit the Jorvik Viking centre. Now that was a fantastic experience. It’s like a mini roller coaster that brings you around to different scenes that shows Viking life. The most interesting part was the smell. Jorvik prides itself on recreating the smells of Viking times. It’s weird and kind of gross. However, it adds to the experience. It’s certainly a creative look at York’s history.


Other than that, we did go to some historical experience in one of the gates, but it’s not even worth mentioning. It was NOT worth the price, and it was not that informative at all.
It was a casual and easy trip, but just as wonderful as it was the first time I went.


There’s one more travel post done. Three down, one to go! I’ve done this out of order, but I’ve saved the best for last. I cannot wait until you read Saturday’s post!

-Daniella

Sunday, June 4, 2017

My Fitness Journey - Month Two

 I didn’t want to write this. Why? Because I was expecting great things. I was so proud of myself for the things I have done this past month. I stayed on schedule. I did a ton of walking while I was travelling. I expected to lose weight. Yesterday, I got on the scale and discovered that I gained two pounds. After that, I didn’t want to write a post. I felt so strongly about that that I ended up not posting on the usual Saturday. The thing is, I knew I had gained weight. I haven’t been working out at all the past couple of weeks. I also haven’t been eating healthy whatsoever because I haven’t been home. This was all on me.



However, this month wasn’t all a was


te. I’ve had two major fitness wins. One was on a 12km hike I did through the Yorkshire Dales. Google it. It’s all hills. I did a hike like this about a year ago and barely made it through. It was so bad that Matt was actually worrying about if I could make it this time around. I nailed that hike. I struggled just as much as the other two and that wasn’t a lot. The other major win is that I recently did my major distance swim for lifeguarding. Normally, I feel like I’m going to pass out at the end. This time, I did not feel like that. Although I wasn’t particularly fast at these two activities, I knew that my overall health had improved.


MONTH ONE

Weight
224 lbs.
Neck
37.5 cm.
Left Arm
41.5 cm.
Right Arm
43 cm.
Waist
97 cm.
Belly
122.5 cm.
Hips
128 cm.
Left Thigh
78 cm.
Right Thigh
78 cm.
Left Calf
47 cm.
Right Calf
41.5 cm.
MONTH TWO

Weight
226 lbs.
Neck
37.5 cm.
Left Arm
42.5 cm.
Right Arm
40 cm.
Waist
98 cm.
Belly
121 cm.
Hips
132 cm.
Left Thigh
73.5 cm.
Right Thigh
72 cm.
Left Calf
47 cm.
Right Calf
45.5 cm.













I now realize how much losing weight is a mental game. It’s really hard to get yourself in the right mindset. Now, I had one great thing happen. For the most part, my measurements are the same. I’m measuring myself (you’re not supposed to), so a few centimetres here and there probably mean I’ve gone wrong down the line. So there I was measuring myself. I start at the top and go down. Nothing has really changed. I was a little disappointed about my hips but whatever. Then I get to my thighs. I measured twice on both legs to make sure the numbers were accurate. It may be a small difference, but it means that what I’m doing is working. I put together the collage below to see if I can notice a difference. Right now, it’s not much. But if it feels this good to change just a little, it will give me the push I need to keep going.


This month, I’m getting a gym membership. I’m also going to be swimming once my pool opens, and I’ve already picked back up on my healthy eating. I am going to push myself this month. 

-Daniella

P.S. I’m going to try and get better at taking pictures, okay? And sorry about the formatting of the charts - I don't know how to fix it. 

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Monthly Favourites - May 2017

May has, by far, been the best month of the year. I think we all know that has to do with my travels this month (don't worry, I'll go back to those posts next week). However, I have a couple other things on this list that has to do with practicality. So let's get right into it!

1. Canon PowerShot SX420 IS 
[source]
I know nothing about cameras. I don't know what constitutes a good one. All I know is that I wanted a camera that was good enough to take travel pictures and is a step above my iPhone. I had a gift card, found a flash sale, and fate happened. I love this camera. It ended up being so much smaller than I expected. As in, it's slightly smaller than my hand. I love it. Again, I don't really know what makes a good camera, but this works for my purposes. From here on out, hopefully all of my pictures will be higher quality. Let me know what you think for the next three pictures.

2. Haworth


I have written nothing about this yet because it was my favourite trip in England. It was an extremely nerdy thing to do, and I loved it. That's all I want to say because if I start talking about it now, I will not stop gushing. You will have to come back here on the 10th to find out what this trip was all about.

3. Fanny Pack



I am a huge fanny pack advocate. During o-week at the beginning of the year, I wore one the entire time. It was so convenient to have everything right there. I also always felt my phone vibrate which does not happen when it's in my pocket. I decided to use it to as a little camera bag for my adorable camera. As you can see, it worked out perfectly. This picture is from Spurn Point, and it shows off just how short I am.

4. England



I was going back and forth on which picture I was going to choose to encapsulate two whole weeks of travelling. I think this one's the best. It shows off my three favourite things about England; castles, scenery, and Matt. This trip wasn't just about England. It was about our relationship. As of tomorrow, we've been long distance for a year. It's had its tough moments, but having two full weeks together made everything worth it. Soon enough, we'll be closer together (more hints!).

5. My Cousin's Wedding



I have not been to a wedding since Marlee's last year. And boy, am I happy! My cousin got married this past weekend, and it was quite the event. The ceremony was beautiful (I cried), and the reception was awesome. All of the cousins got put at the "kids table," where we proceeded to drink a lot of champagne and get increasingly drunk. We were on a first name basis with our waiter who just kept filling up our glasses. We danced all  night, and I think we even made some friends! I talked to so many of her friends, and they were all so kind to me. It was definitely a night for the books!

My May was certainly eventful. I'm not too sure about the big events happening in June, but it will certainly be busy with work. 

What was the best part of your month? What are your upcoming events in June?

Daniella