Entries Tagged as 'Inspiration'

Super, Pretty, Funny n°47



Christmas with Pippa

So I have watched Love Actually, I’ve put up the tree, I’m even playing my Christmas playlist (see below) and yet there is still something that is holding me back from feeling like this Christmas is really here. Its coming too fast! I don’t have time to savour it.

Slow down, Christmas. SLOW DOWN. Just a bit.*

I’m still cracking up over this picture from the weekend. Pippa and I will be here taking in the decorations in our pjs… in the meantime, here are some of my favorite recent reads & watches.


This most adorable of movie trailers

The White House welcomed 100 travel bloggers yesterday to announce priorities for study abroad programmes. Bravo. (Follow along with the talks here: #WHTravelBloggers)

The NYTimes gift guide

The Voyageur’s travel itinerary for Japan

I always LOVE the way NPR structures their best books lists (bookmark this one folks)


Margo’s visit to one of the prettiest towns in France

In the moment with Michelle Dockery

Jen’s trip to Marrakech

OK Go does it again – their music videos are amazing – there are no special effects here


Charts for people obsessed with Serial (with thanks to Robin!)

Kate Spade + Anna Kendrick = brilliance

Victoria Beckham being funny

*I likely also feel this way because I have managed to avoid Oxford and Regents Streets as well as Covent Garden during this period. Nor have I been subjected to the more annoying of the Christmas carols… all in perspective…

On blogging insecurity and inspiration




I’m sure I’m not alone in this but every once in a while I stop and wonder if I’m going about this whole blogging thing right.

One day I feel 100% inspired and the next I’m not sure what to write next. One day I’m incredibly proud of a photo I’ve taken and the next I’m annoyed because I just didn’t capture something the way I wanted to. I wish I was someone who has built the time in to blog everyday but I still haven’t found a way to do that, dedicate myself to my day job the way I want to and still have a social life. And make progress through my ever-growing reading list… ok, and catch Strictly every weekend…

I’m nervous about changing the blog but at the same time, I’m really tempted to kick it up a notch. I don’t want to lose what its always been up until now – a journal/project I’ve loved working on and a nice creative outlet away from work. But at the same time, I recognize with a little investment (of time and focus and organisation, let’s be honest, not money), this could actually become “something”.

There is so much I’ve done just since summer that I still haven’t blogged about yet that I sometimes have to ask myself what I’m waiting for: Our vacation in Cornwall, exploring English countryside mansions, more from long weekends in Lisbon and Amsterdam, a hilarious afternoon tea on a double decker bus and let’s not forget my newest love, Seville.

Either way, I know I’m not the only one who gets these little moments of blogger “folie*”. I like to think its these little moments when our brains run around in circles that something great happens in bloggerland. I’m working on some refresh ideas and some restructuring. I’m giving the blog a true identity and finally ordering business cards. Its exciting. And scary. And nerve-wracking. And fun.

At times, inspiration comes easily and then there are days when I need to shift my focus elsewhere and think about other things. Let my mind rest and discover new things and then come back refreshed.

I’ve been listening to the incredible storytelling on The Moth this weekend while I cooked my Thanksgiving turkey. The Moth is a non-for-profit organisation dedicated to storytellling, originally from New York. Speakers have to tell a story live without any notes. Some of the storytellers are famous like Ethan Hawke or Adam Gopnik or Philip Caputo. Many aren’t. These are stories that break your heart, that encourage you, that are empowering and sad, touching and funny. Most of them are incredibly brave. They are my favorite finds of November.

Listen to this story of a fishing trip gone wrong, or this one of a mysterious email or this one about finding family in Korea. Or my favorite one on stuttering and jaguars. (Just have tissues ready… they are all lovely in their own ways.)

So anyway, I’m rambling now. But I wanted to say: if sometimes this blog goes quiet for a few days, fear not.

I’m still here… just trying to figure out where to go next.

*folie – French for madness; as seen in some Parisian graffiti back in October

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Holiday jetlag



Jess in Seville

I have diagnosed myself.

I have jetlag.

Jetlag from vacation, having crossed only one time zone.

Stay with me for a minute because I am convinced this is a real thing…

Traveling gets my curiosity going. It gets my heart going. I get my learning on and I get my walking shoes on. I try to understand what makes another culture tick and give up my trivialities and my worries for a few days.

Travelling solo brings that out even more so. I woke up thrilled by the fact that I had no agenda everyday. I could get going whenever I wanted. Two cups of coffee while getting ready? No problem. In no rush to throw off the pajamas? Amazing.

I’d wrap my camera over my shoulder, grab my city map and my brand new iPhone 6 (no…  wait… I broke that approximately 5 seconds after arriving in Seville) … my iPAD (yes, I was THAT tourist on this trip holding up a screen the size of my face to get my Instagram pics) and run out the door. Maybe I had a plan, maybe I didn’t. Maybe I’d look at the map, maybe I wouldn’t. Maybe I’d get lost. Maybe I’d find my way again. Maybe I’d ask for help. Maybe I’d accidentally speak Italian to everyone. Maybe I’d be shy about asking for recommendations. Maybe I’d get my courage up and do it anyway. Maybe I’d embarrass myself. Did it really matter?

Maybe I’d run around town and see so many sites in one go my feet would ache at night. Maybe I’d take my time the next day and sit in a Moorish Garden with Amy Poehler’s (incredible) book for an hour, soaking up the sun. Maybe I’d discover something.

Travelling solo makes you realise and appreciate the power of choice. And the fact that you need to make choices because no one else will make them for you. Adrenaline is also a funny thing. I’m learning that travel is the one thing that can guarantee to get my heart going.

But this post is about the one thing I apparently haven’t learned and that is how to come back down from it. I landed in London on Saturday afternoon, ran errands all day Sunday and tried to fix the last phone I broke (yes, this is apparently now “a thing” and I no longer trust myself with technology).

I could not for the life of me fall asleep last night. My mind was racing. Going back to work/to the everyday/to responsibilities was hard. I’d only gone to Spain – I was still in Europe – there was a one hour time difference – why couldn’t I snap out of it and just rest?

And here we are – Monday night – I’m exhausted. I’m not exactly sure why I’d been so unsettled the night before – why I couldn’t snap out of the solo travel mode.

But I do know I’ll embrace it again at the next opportunity. Being diagnosed with holiday jetlag is 100% worth it.

Seville trip in stats:

  • 1,354 miles from London to Seville
  • 2.5 hours flight from Gatwick Airport via EasyJet
  • 4 nights via AirBnB
  • 6 historic sites visited
  • 840 pictures taken
  • 3 evenings of neighbors hosting opera singing lessons
  • 3 meals consisting purely of gazpacho (trust me, its better in Seville)
  • 2 rooftop Gin & Tonics

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