Why I Came Off The Pill

Recently I hadn't felt myself. I felt like a little piece of me was missing - I almost felt dehumanised. I decided that after 6 years I was going to stop taking the pill. Luckily my boyfriend supported my decision and so 2 months ago I decided to take a break. For my body's sake and my mental state.

I've never had a bad experience with the combination pill - no cramps, light periods and being able to skip periods was also a blessing when holidays came up! What I did notice was I missed my libido, being able to control my weight and not being in sync with my body anymore. So I took the leap and I feel a lot better already. I feel I have a long way to go yet - I think my body is still adjusting so I'll do another update in a few months time.

Just before I started taking the pill 6 years ago, I had the worst period cramps I'd ever experienced, I'm just dreading that they will return. I guess there's pro's and cons to this whole situation. I just need to do whats best for me. I wanted to check that my body still worked - I've been using the Flo app to track my period (as it's not like clockwork anymore!) My first period happened exactly a month after taking my last pill. As for my second I'm still waiting....It never was very regular so that's to be expected! I'm just trying to listen to my body more. 

After a lot of research it's no wonder I hadn't felt myself in a while - I was pumping myself with fake hormones to trick my body. The list of side effects that comes with the pill is long and scary - so here I am - starting a new journey and seeing where it leads me!


Monday 27th March
Back to Tokyo

On Monday we returned to Tokyo. We had booked another Air BnB rather than a hotel as the cost's had gone up so much due to it nearly being peak season. It was just outside of Tokyo in Ogikubo. It was really easy to travel into Tokyo from Ogikubo, it was a smaller district with a couple of little streets. There was a starbucks and that was about it!
The air bnb was nice, but not as nice as the one in Osaka - firstly the place hadn't been cleaned so we had to get in touch with the host - but it wasn't the end of the world and was resolved nice and quickly. We decided to go and find some food once we'd unpacked - so we headed into Shinjuku and ate at nice Italian place (Finding good Japanese food was HARD if you haven't guessed already!) We also planned out what we wanted to do before heading back home.

Tuesday 28th March

The sun was shining and we'd seen a nice park that was close to Shinjuku station so we started our day off there. I'm so glad we did because all the cherry blossom had bloomed earlier than expected. It was gorgeous to see, and you knew exactly where one was because of all the people standing underneath the trees. The Japanese call cherry blossom viewing Hanami - quite often they'll sit beneath the trees with drinks and a picnic and watch the flowers bloom. It symbolises the beauty and fragility of life. It was really special to see and I'm so glad we did. You normally don't expect to see any until the first few weeks of April.

After lounging in the sun and taking plenty of pictures we headed over to Shibuya as we really wanted a Taco Bell....oops! We took some photos of
the busiest crossing in the world. It was spectacular to watch. We then took a short train ride to Harajuku. I'd seen a really cute Starbucks rooftop online and wanted to see if for myself. It was worth the wait in line to get to! It was a pretty rooftop with lanterns and plants. Harajuku itself was really interesting to walk down. Full of all the cutesy stores that is typical of Japan.
Later that evening we decided to head to Roppongi Hills to find somewhere to eat. We stumbled across a Hard Rock Cafe. It was just as good as we thought it would be! It was nice seeing another district of Tokyo and seeing the city at night.

Wednesday 29th March
Final Fantasy and Cats

Our Last day was spent at the Eorza Final Fantasy cafe in Akihabara.
We first headed to Ikebukaro so that I could purchase something from the Pokemon Center. I really wanted an Eevie - but a Pikachu had to do! We also did some last minute shopping around Shibuya and Akihabara.
We had accidentally stumbled upon the Final Fantasy Cafe a week ago - but booking tickets was difficult and required help from a shop assistant!
We'd booked tickets the week before, so when we arrived we were seated at the bar where we ordered our themed food from an Ipad. Luckily there were pictures so we could half figure out what we were eating. The food was all themed and the restaurant looked awesome too. If I was to return I would do ALL the themed cafes that Japan has to offer. They have Sailormoon, Cinnamoroll, My Melody, Moomin, Kawaii Monster and many more!
I really wanted to visit a Cat Cafe whilst we were here, and with a free afternoon we went to the MoCha Cat Cafe in Harajuku. It had really pretty interiors and housed about 15 cats. It was a really nice experience. My boyfriend hated every second....but I LOVED IT! We had the sun setting behind us and a beautiful view of Meji Jingu from the cafe.
For our last meal we headed back to Taco Bell (Don't judge) and got ready to leave the city.

Thursday 30th March
Home Time

It took about an hour to get from Ogikubo to Haneda Airport through trains. We were up at 4am to get the first train at 5am. We posted the pocket WiFi back, checked in and had breakfast at the airport.
With yen to spare and time I bought a medium sized Totoro to take back home with me. Winning!
The flight back home was really easy, I even managed to squeeze in 4 films on the way home.

Japan was an amazing country. Everyone was so polite, friendly and helpful. I thought the whole trip would be overwhelming and difficult but it was the complete opposite. 
I would highly recommend adding Japan to your bucket lists - I will definitely be going back one day to finish off the rest of the country. 

Next time I'd love to experience an Onsen, see the northern mountains and see the exotic beaches in the south. Guess I'd best get saving then!


Tuesday 21st March
Bullet Train and Air BnB

On Tuesday we woke up and headed to Tokyo station to get the Bullet Train to Osaka. We had pre-booked seats earlier in the week, and there was no extra cost as we had the JR Pass. It took about 3 hours so we had sure we had plenty of Japanese snacks! The seats are really roomy and it went buy pretty quickly. On a good day you might get lucky and see Mt Fuji.
We soon arrived in Osaka and made our way to our Air BnB which was situated right in the heart of Osaka. The Air BnB was perfect, with traditional tatami mat rooms, kitchen and 2 separate bedrooms. We Quickly embraced the rain and explored. We headed to Dotonbori - which is the main street of Osaka. Filled with bright lights and food stalls. We explored Don Quixote which is a tax free shop with EVERYTHING (including dildos next to the rice cookers....) and then had desert in a cute little cafe by the canal.

After a little wonder around to get our bearings we found a really nice Teppanyaki restaurant along the main street. We cooked our own food on the table - we had asparagus wrapped in bacon, and a really delicious beef dish. We were finally finding good food in Japan! 

We then ended up chatting the night away and falling asleep on the Tatami mats whilst drinking Japanese peach cidre - yum.

Wednesday 22nd March
Kyoto in a day

We decided to travel to Kyoto which is about 30mins away on the train from Osaka. We didn't start our day till quite late as Osaka's subway system isn't quite as easy as Tokyo's was. Once we arrived we knew we wanted to head straight to the kiyomizu-dera temple. It was a little walk away - and we stopped off for some katsu curry on the way there. We walked up a street to the top of the hill. The sights were amazing, and watching everyone dressed in their kimonos made it one of my favourite places. I would 100% rent a kimono if I were to return. we walked around the temple, admired the views and then started our decent back into the town. We headed to the Gyon district (Geisha district) Unfortunately we didn't see any geisha's, but it was nice to walk around.
We then decided to head to the Bamboo Grove on the other side of the town. Trying to find a bus/train that took us the correct station was pretty difficult. 
We finally arrived in Arashiyama - it was about 4pm at this point, so the sun was just about to set. We made it to the bamboo forest and it was truly beautiful. Because it was quite late and getting a bit chilly, it was really quiet. After walking around we headed to a nearby park and enjoyed the sunset. 
I really wanted to go and see Fushimi Inari (a thousand gates) and because we didn't want to come back to Kyoto we decided to squeeze it in. When we arrived it was almost dark but it didn't take away the beauty of it. Each tori gate is placed by families - which has created a pilgrimage up a mountain to the top shrine. What we didn't realise was how tall this mountain was....we walked up the whole thing in the dark. The view from the top was pretty amazing, the shrine however was not. It took about 1hour30 to walk up and down the whole thing. Hungry and tired we returned back to Osaka at about 10pm - luckily I had spotted a TGI Fridays on the way to the station earlier that day - so TGI's for dinner it was! Tired and exhausted we decided that we'd have a late start tomorrow and explore Osaka so that we didn't have to go on too many trains.

Thursday 23rd March
Exploring Osaka

Not wanting to walk too much today after walking 23 miles in Kyoto, we first headed to Osaka Castle. It's a really beautiful castle with pretty grounds to walk in. We decided not to go in, but admire it from the outside. Street performers and food stalls surrounded the grounds. We then headed towards a train station that would take us to Osaka aquarium. I'd heard that this one was one of the best in Japan - so we found some food (a subway...how Japanese of us!So we entered the aquarium. It was a really good - filled with whale sharks, giant stingrays, dolphins, penguins and seals. The layout was really simple. I highly recommend this if the weather isn't great!
We then headed to the Umeda Sky Building - another observation deck (told you they love them!) we enjoyed watching the city lights come on as it turned to night. As the night wasn't over we headed to an arcade to see what was on offer. Oh My....they take arcade games seriously!! the first two floors were often grabber machines with cute kawaii toys and figures to win. The next floor often had musical games such as guitar hero, drums, dj games and our personal favourite...MAI MAI!! It's like a huge washing machine but you play to the music. So much fun! and only 100Yen for 4 goes? Cheap night out!! The next two floors often contained online games - it looked like people had been there all day! 

Friday 24th March
Oh Deer...

Today we visited Nara - famous for its thousands of wondering deer! This was one of my favourite days along side Kyoto. As soon as we started walking towards the Temple we started to see deer. They were all really friendly - and willing to take selfies ;) We walked around the grounds and found a little restaurant that did curry for some lunch. The Todai-Ji Temple is one of the largest wooden structures in the world. It was seriously impressive and housed a huge Buddha inside. We got some fortunes (mine was good luck! thankfully!) and then wondered around the grounds some more whilst feeding the deer some crackers - this meant I got chased after and leaped at! They were friendly, but boy do they love those crackers! There wasn't much else to do in Nara so we headed back to Osaka to wonder around the town and the shops. 

For dinner we decided to get some Kobe beef. Kobe beef is famous in Japan for being so tender. IT WAS THE BEST MEAL!! We had ours with fried noodles - however if your willing to pay for the higher priced cuts you cook it on the table to your liking. I'm glad we got to experience this Japanese delicacy. We then finished off the night back at the Taito Game Arcade and drank peach cider till we fell asleep!

Saturday 25th March
Fail of the Day 

We had originally planned to travel to Hiroshima from Osaka- every time I had researched it at home it seemed possible on the JR Pass. What I didn't realise was that our pass didn't allow us on that type of Bullet Train. And it would of taken too long to get there by any other transport. A different JR Pass is needed! (Only mistake of the while trip!) none of this was explained on the website. So with a spare day we decided to travel to Kobe as it was only 30mins away by train.
There wasn't much to do in Kobe. They have a large China town and a huge harbour which we enjoyed walking along and learning about the earthquake back in 1995.
Before we left I had read about some waterfalls - so we visited the Nunobiki waterfalls before heading home. The trail up to the waterfalls was situated just behind the train station. It only took about 30mins to walk there and back but it was definatly worth it! The waterfall was really beautiful. I've heard there are also herb gardens and also an Onsen up that mountain. 
Back in Osaka we headed back to the Teppanyaki restaurant as we loved it so much the other night. We also ended up going back to the arcade trying to perfect our Mai Mai technique.

Sunday 26th March
DenDen Town

Sunday was our last day in Osaka and it was tipping it down! We had a much needed lie in and took a walk to DenDen town which is Osaka's version of Akihabara (electric town) Lots of Anime shops, Manga shops and it was a good opportunity to buy some gifts and treat ourselves to some souvenirs too. We were craving another teriyaki burger from Mcdonalds so we did just that! Osaka had a very different atmosphere to Tokyo - the pace of life was a lot slower and the city was in need of some updating. But it was a really enjoyable trip non the less and allowed us to use as a hub to visit some different towns in Japan. 

We packed our bags that evening ready to travel back to Tokyo to spend our last few days.


Thursday 16th March:
12 hours later

We arrived at Haneda Airport at 7.30am.
Picked up our pocket WiFi and queued up to get our Japan Rail Pass. It was all really simple, as well as finding the Monorail to take us into the heart of the city. Our hotel was situated in Shinjuku - a busy hub with the worlds biggest train station - so we managed to navigate our way there. We couldn't check into our hotel till 3pm - so we left our bags there and went exploring.
We decided to use the day to get our bearings around Shinjuku and see what it had to offer.
We then took the train to Shibuya to see the crossing and have another wonder around to see what Tokyo had to offer. It was a long day soaking up the culture change, and getting used to the transport system. 4 coffees later we decided to retire early due to major jetlag - we had some shitty ramen and fell asleep.
Also their vending machines are the BEST!

Friday 17th March:
Skytree and Akihabara

After waking up early - we made our way to Starbucks for some breakfast. The Japanese have odd breakfasts, so an american chain was the only way to go. We had buttermilk biscuits and waffles with the most delicious coffee. We made our way to the Imperial Palace only to find it was shut! Should of done more research! Luckily we were quite close to Tokyo Skytree and it was turning into a beautiful day. So we headed to Skytree town went up the 634m structure to see the city from above.
We got fast passes so that we didn't have to join the horrendous que - so we paid 4000 yen (about £35) to go up both observation decks. The view was incredible. I would highly recommend the experience! Below the skytree is a load of shops and restaurants including the Pokemon Centre! After wishing all my money away, we headed to Akihabara to have a look around their 'Electric Town'
We really wanted to experience a maid cafe - so we did! We went to Maid Dreamin' which looked like a tacky horror story at first - with a few guys sitting on their own and a stage in front of them. In the end it was a really good experience of moe culture in japan, with cute girls serving us the most kawaii food and drinks! You had to sing little tunes when you got your food, wore animal ears, and had to say 'Meow Meow' to get the servers attention! My boyfriend found it a little cringey at first, but as more people came into the cafe, it was much more fun!
We woundered around Akihabara and looked in all the anime shops - manga, figures, vintage games - It was really interesting, and I enjoyed trying to find merch from my favourite anime's (yes I like anime...so sue me!)
We finished off the day walking back to our hotel and stopping of for some food. We ended up in the basement of some building eating Okonomiyaki - which I found out I don't like! (Food was HARD in Japan!) But I had some really nice peach wine?

Saturday 18th March
Studio Ghibli and Meji Jingu

The day started with a Mcdonalds breakfast (it was right outside our hotel, it would of been rude not to.) I had booked us tickets to the Studio Ghibli Museum in advance - It was located in Mitaka; a little train ride away to the outskirts of Tokyo, to get the the museum we had to walk through a gorgrous park with a lake, street food, and old shrines and bridges. It was really nice to get out of the city and see local life for a change. We were really lucky and saw some early cherry blossom!
The museum was really nice, with lots of Ghibli Charm! If you haven't heard of Studio Ghibli before - it's basically Japans version of Disney. Animated movies designed for all the family - they are charming, and gorgeous to watch - my personal favourite is Howls Moving Castle. We spent about 1 hour 30 mins at the museum, it's only small but well worth a visit.
We walked back to the train station through the park and headed to Meji Jinju Shrine just outside of Harajuku Station.
The Tori Gates to enter the park were the biggest I'd seen. It was all surrounded by woodland with wide paths up to the shrine. It was crazy to be so quiet when it was in the heart of Tokyo. We walked to a park on the other side before finding some food at our hotel. The resturant was called 'Royal Host' and was terrible....I'm sure we'll find some good food soon right?!

Sunday 19th March
Imperial Palace & Tokyo Tower and Robots

 This morning I had to cutest Pastry from a little bakery we found near our hotel. It was a little koala shaped chocolate bread! OMG!
The Imperial Palace is open on Sundays so off we went! The sun was shining and it was the most gorgeous day! The Gardens were really nice to walk around, with old buildings dotted around - like old tea pavillions and japanese style gardens with huge skyscrapers lurking in the distance. We wanted to go see Tokyo Tower (Exactly the same shape as the Eiffel Tower except red!) we didn't feel the need to go up as we'd already been up SkyTree. There was a festival going on underneath, which had some japanese girls performing and loads of local food stalls.Behind the tower was a cute little park, and side streets to explore.

Later that evening we went to the Robot Restaurant - this was truly japanese. Oh My! Loud, bright and a little bit crazy! It was £70 a ticket which was pretty pricey...however if your going to go to Tokyo it's high up on every list of things to do! It was certainly memorable, and very different. The show was about 2 hours long, and you could order food too.
Once the show finished it was about 9pm and we decided the night wasn't over - so we made our way to the Metropolitan Government Building to get a free nighttime view of the city from their observation deck! (The Japanese sure loved their decks!) Walking through the skyscraper district at nigh was really nice too. The night view was incredible.

Monday 20th March
Nakano Broadway, Okibukuro and Tokyo Dome

For our last day in Tokyo (don't worry - we do return!) we went to discover Nakano Broadway which is full of anime goods and vintage toys. It was really interesting and the side streets were really fun to walk down. With electrical wires hanging overhead and bright signs everywhere - it was like being in an anime itself! We finally had our first decent meal - which was breadcrumb chicken, curry sauce, with some mash and a little soup - odd combination, but damn it was tasty!
We then went to Okibukuro to find Sunshine City which is a HUGE shopping centre. It also has the Pokemon Mega Store which had everything in it! It was so so busy as it was a national holiday, but we still enjoyed wondering around a new part of Tokyo. We then went to Tokyo Dome which is a baseball stadium, and has a number of other attractions too - such as rollercoasters, rides, a water park and themed cafes (I saw a Moomin Cafe, a Bubba Gump and some others!) I would defiantly want to explore TokyoDome more next time we visit Tokyo! It looked like it had a lot to offer.
I don't even remember what I had for dinner....obviously nothing to write home about! Was quite possibly a Mcdonalds.....it was amazing out there! Teriyaki burgers come to the UK please!!

Tune in next time for our trip to Osaka!

Tips for travelling to Japan

It sure has been a while!

I've recently come back from the trip of a lifetime -  two weeks in Japan! The whole trip was amazing - I was really apprehensive about the whole trip, having never been on a long haul flight before, or had such a drastic language barrier - That's right Kanji; I'm looking at you!

At first I was looking at going on a tour for two weeks, having someone there to help us get around and make sure we saw all the sights - after some research and pricing it all up, it was cheaper to do it ourselves and it gave us the freedom to do what what we liked. Also imagine being stuck on a group holiday for two weeks with people you don't like!

I'll be doing a day by day run down of our trip too - so keep an eye out!

Tip Number 1:
Get a pocket wifi. 
For two weeks it cost us around £100 for a decent pocket wifi which meant we had access to the internet the whole holiday. It was priceless for getting us around Tokyo. Google maps was our biggest friend whilst we were out there.
I ordered mine in advance from this website: http://www.globaladvancedcomm.com/pocketwifi.html I picked it up at the airport, connected straight away - and then just posted it back once the holiday was over. You can connect up to 15 devices to it - so great if your in a group!
(also invaluable if your playing Pokemon Go!)

Tip Number 2:
Get a JR Pass.
The Japan Rail Pass allows you to use any of their JR trains in Tokyo and beyond. It also allows you to ride certain bullet trains, so if your planning on travelling down to Osaka like we did, the price of the JR pass is already covered by that one trip alone, 
I did find information on the website to be tricky. make sure you read all about it and make sure it's worth the £250 - If your just staying in Tokyo I wouldn't bother.

Tip Number 3:
Before we went, we researched everything Japan had to offer and tailor made our holiday from all the things we wanted to do or see. We were pretty easy going and put in some free days so we could explore. It also meant you could travel efficiently and group attractions together based on their location. I found a great website called https://www.odigo.jp/ It helps you put together an itinerary so that you don't waste half your day travelling on the subway.

Tip Number 4:
Air BnB.
This was the first time we had used Air BnB - we were a little apprehensive but took the leap anyway as Hotels were starting to get expensive as were were heading into Japan's peak season - Cherry Blossom Season. It was alot cheaper, and we had a really great experience at both our Air BnB's. You get a real look into Japanese culture and they often have free pocket wifi's included in the price of the room. So great if your really on a budget! There was also alot of choice in both Tokyo and Osaka - so there is something to suit everyone!

Tip Number 5:
Relax and Enjoy.
Japan was the most welcoming country I've ever visited. Everyone is so polite and willing to help; even though Tokyo is so over populated, it didn't seem it as everyone gets on with their day, whilst being mindful of others. Getting around was really easy, and it was just as beautiful and crazy as you would imagine. 

Stay tuned for a day by day run down of our trip - with lots if pictures too!

If you have visited Japan and have any more tips please leave them in the comments.
Or if your planning a trip to Japan and have any questions please ask away!

Little Corners Part 2

The Hallway is the centre of the our house, so I wanted to add personal touches so you knew exactly whose house it was as soon as you walk in. I still want to find some more prints to hang up, but that's an on going project right now.

I wanted something cosy, yet bright to fill the space, so the wood and the white ornaments set if off quite nicely.

This print is from my good friend Stuart - you can check out his page here: http://www.shred-art.com/
He mostly does snowboard themed paintings, but has his own distinct flair which I love. We also own a smaller version for my boyfriends office (which is yet to be finished!)

On the console table we have an array of trinkets to add a homely feel to the place. I originally had a small vase of thin fake flowers in the corner, but found this big leafy fucker in IKEA who fits in perfectly (Don't ask me what plant it is...the label was wrong!) The plant pot is from IKEA too.

I also found an LED star light from New Look, and a Copper 'L' from Hobby Craft.

The console table was from a shop called Cargo - which no longer exsists, but it was a bargain and a half!

Underneath we keep shoes and bags as it's only a small hallway and we wouldn't be able to fit anything else in like hooks or a seperate shoe storage.

Hope you enjoy!

Zoeva Rose Golden Palette Review

I picked up the Zoeva Rose Golden Palette after spotting the brand in Selfridges. I had originally gone in to buy the NARS eyeshadow duo in 'Isolde.' But it's sold out everywhere - for good reason too, its gorgeous! I swatched it at the counter and fell in love, and then my heart sank when the assistant told me they we're sold out. After a quick mooch on the internet, it seems to be sold out everywhere.

So after perusing the Selfridges counters, I came across the Zoeva stand, and immediately they had 4 gorgeous palettes for only £18. It was hard to only choose one, but I walked away with the Rose Golden Palette and couldn't be happier!

It's super sleek packaging is ideal for travel, and includes 10 eyeshadows. 3 are matte, and 7 are shimmers. All the colours are really wearable and great for all year round. With warm coppers and golds, and smokey cool toned browns. This is really versatile and the shadows are great quality.

Considering I was going to spend £25 at NARS for two colours, I think this is a pretty great find. They would also make fantastic Christmas gifts for any beauty lover. The other palettes had some gorgeous berry tones which I would love to add to my collection too.

My favourite colours out of the whole palette are 'Just A Rose' and 'Copper Is King' (Obvious choice

I'd also love to try the Zoeva brushes, they had some beautiful gift sets for Christmas available - maybe next time! That's all my spending for the year done!

Time to save up for next years adventures <3

Search This Blog