On the final days of our trip, we headed towards the Avenue des Champs-Élysées for a browse and some shopping. It was a seriously pretty street but hugely busy, and it felt like summer – which was a good thing.
We also went to see the Arc de Triomphe which sits nicely at the top of the avenue – slap bang in the middle of the busiest, craziest roundup ever. I hate driving through roundabouts so I couldn’t even look at this one. Truly. I kept trying to take a peek in to people’s windows as the houses were so impressive (pretty sure you can get arrested for that actually), and I’d heard the area was home to some of the most expensive property in the world. I’m not sure why you would want to live there though to be honest – it was noisy and busy. I still would though, don’t get me wrong.
After gazing up at the Arc, we took a walk back down Champ-Élysées again, and in to Sephora for a bit of perving. I left with nothing, despite wanting it all. Willpower, I think that’s called.
We decided to take a walk down the river towards the Eiffel Tower and get something to eat. We had a cute picnic under the Trocadero, and watched the sun set over the tower which was lovely.
On the final day, we headed over to the Notre Dame again and had a little wander around here, seeing the side streets before heading back to the Ladurée tea rooms & store to pick up some macarons for my mum. Maybe some for me too.
After that, it was time for wine in the sun outside a little café – people watching is fun in every country. We were actually sitting near the MAC shop and I just remembered seeing a couple come out of the store with three of the biggest bags of MAC goodies – like MAC bags that were the same size as those laundry bags you get. It could have been £3000 worth – considering how small MAC items are. Crazy. The girl couldn’t even carry one bag!
Before it got dark, we got the Metro over to the Trocadero for the last time, and watched the sun set over the tower before the light show. How pretty!
We decided to have dinner near our apartment and had one of the best meals ever at a new place up the road – slow cooked beef and lots of wine.
It was definitely such a great trip, made better by the fact that we saw and did so much more than we expected. I definitely recommend a visit in the near future! I hope you enjoyed my photos.
As promised, I thought I would show you some of my snaps from last week’s trip to gay Paris, we went from Monday until Saturday which was enough time to see everything without hurrying – although there’s so much to see so perhaps we didn’t see everything but we saw more than planned. You could definitely go for less time if you wanted, but we fancied a longer trip so we weren’t exhausting ourselves!
At first we thought we had picked the worst time to go as we missed Bombay Bicycle Club playing in Glasgow (not to mention a few great bands playing Paris), the opening of a great restaurant here, and then my mum asked me to go to New Zealand with her – as it turned out we picked a great time to go as the weather was stunning! T-shirt weather, in fact.
We stayed in an apartment we found on Airbnb which was great, so affordable and much better than a hotel. We stayed in the Porte de Montreuil area which is a little out of the city but it was actually a great place to stay – you can get the Metro line all the way to the Trocadero to see the Eiffel tower and it was an easy place to get the Metro to and from for other places. There’s also a couple of supermarkets and a market with fresh produce a few times per week, and we dined at a couple of the restaurants, including Mama Shelter which I had heard great things about from Liv – I was surprised to discover one nearby by accident which was ideal.
On the first day, we didn’t get to our apartment until the evening so we decided to head out for some dinner and then get a good night’s sleep. We got the Metro to Oberkampf to go to the highly recommended Blend, a gourmet burger restaurant a bit like Byron Burger perhaps. I can honestly say this was the best burger I’ve ever had, it was incredible! The staff were super friendly and the tiny cheesecake was divine also – as was the beer. I highly recommend you check this place out! I’ll probably never enjoy a burger ever again.
The following day we got the tube straight to the Trocadero – I can’t even put it in to words how amazing it is to walk out of the subway, around the corner and be faced with the Eiffel Tower straight in front of you. It’s incredible. I’ve been before but I had actually forgotten how breathtaking it is – I’m a little bit obsessed with all things Eiffel Tower, incase you hadn’t realised. After taking a few early morning snaps of the tower, we headed across the road to Carette, another place that everyone seems to talk about. It was Pancake Day so obviously we had to get some gorgeous crepes to celebrate! Just look at the whipped cream piled high – and the coffee! Oh baby.
We took a walk down (to work off the food babies) towards the Eiffel Tower and the Champ De Mars, we wandered through the park area and then got the Metro towards Saint Germain for a little shop. We were just exploring at this point, which I really recommend you do – it’s best to discover places rather than properly plan out a trip. You find so much more by just wandering around and getting a little lost. I of course headed straight for Sephora – actually that’s kind of a lie, I knew there was one on Saint Germain but I didn’t know where so I allowed myself to discover it – I picked up a couple of bits which I’ll be posting about in due course.
City Pharma was also on the cards – I never noticed before how many pharmacie’s there are in Paris! Last time I went I was only getting in to blogging (I think it was maybe the second post of mine!) so beauty wasn’t something I was phased about – there were around 5 beauty stores near our apartment though. I didn’t think I would be too phased by City Pharma but wow – I can see why everyone loves this place! Not only is it SUPER cheap, but the range of products they stock is incredible – I had to stop myself from buying skincare! I highly recommend a trip here – it’s heaven. And also a bit of hell too as it’s super busy – sharpen those elbows.
Stay tuned for part two of my trip – I hope you enjoyed it so far!
Living with your loved one can get boring quickly if you don’t make an effort, things like being tired after work, being skint before payday and just generally being a bit old and dull can mean date nights and spending quality time together become a thing of the past – especially after the two year mark! Jordan and I aren’t overly romantic, I think we’re more fun than cheesy but we know how to have fun without spending silly amounts so here’s a few ideas if you’re stuck…
I have to admit that I’m pretty bossy when it comes to cooking and Jordan point-blank refuses to be sous-chef to my head chef. However, there are times where we will prep, make and eat dinner together – ideally when we’re not overly hungry otherwise things can get a bit much. Grab some wine, put on a playlist that suits you both (no Pink Floyd this time, bf) and have a leisurely evening in the kitchen cooking up a top notch dinner. This can be a recipe for disaster (see what I did there) if you have a small kitchen or whatever, but it’s perfect for Friday nights in – you would be slaving away over the cooker anyway so you may as well make it fun. I often cook up dinner while Jordan gets the sides sorted – ie. food is on the table quicker. We spend all evening in our kitchen sometimes, choosing songs, making cocktails and tucking in to a big dinner. I make something fancy (chicken nuggets) and we light some candles – it’s easy but super nice.
This is the most fun, especially as I’m not the biggest cinema fan because they’re always so cold and loud. We stockpile on buttery popcorn, pick a bottle of wine (hmm I sense a theme here) and perhaps a bowl of sweets or ten (forty is ideal I’ve found). Prop up the pillows, add in some cushions and throw a duvet in to the mix. Pick a film or two, spend roughly ten minutes finding the ultimate lounging sweet spot and chill out. Both Jordan and I can have quite stressful days (as I’m sure everyone does, unless you test cashmere socks for a living) so unwinding like this is the dream. Sure, there’s the odd bicker over which Ryan Gosling film to watch, but it’s easily resolved. All of them, one after the other.
If you usually go out for dinner every now and again, switch it up! Go somewhere for amazing cocktails first and then move on to a place you’ve both never tried. I keep an eye on Twitter for new places that have recently opened and google restaurant lists in Glasgow, that way we’re always trying something new. See what else is on in your local town/city – I know in Glasgow there’s drive-in cinema nights through Itison, we also have things like the Science Centre (maybe this is only open during the day but what if its not?! Shocker) and also Ashton Lane for pretty late night fun. The best events are tucked away waiting to be uncovered so keep this in mind!
It’s usually a good idea to plan ahead with these things, but sometimes being spontaneous is what it’s all about. I really recommend keeping an eye on Itison in general, it’s so good for events on the cheap! There was a point where I bought a deal from here every day for a week, we were dining like kings.
My bee-eff and I share a mutual love of music, so I am always keeping an eye on the concert listings around here. Going to dinner somewhere new and then a gig would be my ideal date night, the fun is ENDLESS. Over the last little while we’ve been to see Editors, Mystery Jets and The Twilight Sad. I make sure I check out the ticket sites constantly – although I see Bombay Bicycle Club are playing here while we’re away which is obviously soul-destroying. If music ain’t your thing, check what’s on at the local theatres or whatever – I know the Scottish Ballet here put on some incredible shows!
This is probably best done near payday if you’re feeling flush, but sometimes going to the next city for the night is most exciting. We have Edinburgh really close so sometimes we have gone through for the night if both of us are off – I check lastminute.com for secret hotels. You can usually get 4 or 5 star hotels for much less last minute – ideal! Although Edinburgh is right next to us (we live across from the train station, it takes under an hour) we hardly ever go unless Jordan has a gig there or we have another reason to be there but whenever I am there I just think why am I not spending all of my spare time here? Silly.
I find being in a new city so inspiring, I just want to do everything – eating, seeing, shopping, drinking (naturally). Get some plans together or just chill in a swish hotel all night watching repeats, there’s no rules with date nights.
This is just a few that we partake in, more to inspire you than anything else. Anyone else love a good date night?
This year has definitely been a fun one, so I thought I would take some of my favourite photos and compile them for all to see – I had so much fun doing this and it was great to look back at some of my most memorable times from 2013. I had a hard time choosing photos but I definitely think the above sums up the year.
The first couple of snaps were taken in Edinburgh a year ago (so technically still 2012 but who’s counting), Jordan’s band Flood of Red had a gig in the big city so we went through and had a grand old time. I’m hoping to spend more time in Edinburgh next year as it’s so close, we really should venture there more often!
In February we moved in to our new flat so there’s quite a few happy photos taken around this time, including a little picture of my office – looking awfully tidy there I must say. The first and last photos on the second row are of our lovely big kitchen, currently so cold you can see your breath when standing in it. Bring back summer, please. Please.
A couple of snaps from warmer times, Jordan with cherry blossoms for hair and a trip out with my big brother and my little nephew Owen, before they moved back to New Zealand for good. We got little Mouse around this time too, I managed to squeeze just two photos of her in which is pretty good for me as I’m a complete cat mum.
Row four is mainly made up of pictures from our trip to Palma in August, gah I miss being in the sun so much – this was definitely such an amazing time and I love looking at our pictures from the holiday. I was also a lot thinner and way more tanned then – sad times!
I included a couple of pictures from Milan, including the Duomo – probably one of the most magnificent buildings I’ve ever seen, and of course one of my favourite photos taken. I waved goodbye to summer with a night with my two fave girls, Emily and Danielle – taken after a boozy makeup and whiskey party in my flat!
We started Autumn off with fireworks and er, ice cream! Then came Editors in November, one of the only gigs I went to this year but definitely one of my all time favourites, I absolutely loved seeing them live and I hope I will get another chance to at some point.
On to my birthday and Christmas, finishing off with a chilly snap I took at home last week – just looking at it makes me feel cold!
If I was to describe this year in one word, it would be stable. I’ve really found my feet this last year and I feel a lot more independent and happier with myself, after a long time of not knowing what I wanted to be or where I wanted to be, it’s been such a relief to find a place where I belong and work on something that actually matters to me. Change is good, but sometimes normality is more fun, and I hope I see more of this in 2014!