Challenging times call for creative days and so today I’m showing you a couple, not a piece of art on their own, but I hope they’ll awake your creative itch and make you dream of sunny warm days heading to the beach.
I had been dreaming of making my own scrunchies for years. Literally. If these quarantine months had one good thing was that I could not use the “no-time” excuse for my old projects. So I finally did it! I had some fabric with my own pattern designs that I’d bought a couple of years ago, so I put it to use. It was a fun project to do but it also involved a lot more hand-sewing than I thought. And of course, I prefer the speed of my sewing machine. But the practice is practice!
This was originally a knee-high dress, with no waist. I loved the top part and the back (sorry no pic!) but I never wear long skirts. Mini length is my favourite! So I cut the dress and made a belt from the same fabric; now it falls with a nicer fit and has a bow in the back! Not a mini dress that I’m gonna wear to the office but I’m sure it will be one of my favourites for hot summer days, with its lightness and flow.
Some lessons learned
1- Calmly read all steps before doing anything. I lost a lot of time figuring out how I was supposed to fold and turn the first scrunchy because I haven’t read carefully the part in which you turn the tube halfway .
2- Don’t be so afraid of cutting and making the seams smaller. I was afraid to cut too much of the dress for the seams and ended having a huuuge hem at the bottom. Next time I better measure twice and use a running stitch instead of going directly to the sewing machine. I’m still thinking about redoing the whole thing now.
So… kind reminder to myself: think before doing and don’t rush!
Oh these little beaches! White sand (at least before the winds blow and the sea rises) and blue, green and purple waters. Fluffy foam and funny waves… The beach is where I go when I just want to go somewhere. Where I go on my mind to think, dream and relax. I love where I am when I’m not at the beach and I love going to the seashore at the same time.
It is the place where I go on Summer to … just go.
It is where I go on Winter to walk the dog and breath the salty air when it’s flat. And surfing whenever the stars align.
Let me fly away underwater and listen to the sounds down there.
I dream of going to the desert and look at those endless mountains of sand, soft under the feet, slipping between the toes, too hot to step over for long.
In the water the world morphs, it’s more flexible, open… It seems reality isn’t as stiff as it often seems to be. I see more glimpses of freedom in the water, may it be because I get to play and be myself as we used to do when we were kids.
I like to remind myself that this is what can be home. I don’t need a place to call my own, I am home and the sea (and nature) is where I like to hang out. Not much else I need.
The shapes of on the water make me crazy (in a good sense). I find it so fascinating to look at the changing shapes, the movement and colours. It’s like a kaleidoscope. I always love waiting for the swell to come while I enjoy the peaceful landscape, the changing colours, the lights and skies, the surface of the sea… I’ve seen so many wonderful skies thanks to being chasing waves.
Most of these pics are courtesy of my twin sis. As well as this nice butt %$s Sorry, I meant legs 🤪. You can see (read) her stuff here. You should take a look (and not just because I helped with the brand-web-graphics).
My sis, you’ll see lots of pics of her on my insta. Don’t think that’s too bad, we are twins xp
PS. This post may have been published like some months after it was actually photographed and written. It may just be that I like to fake I live in Australia or that I’ve been busy with other business.
Summer doesn’t want you to be sad.
She is not going that far, and she’s coming back in 9 months. She’s just going on a trip, and you could even join her.
But the sea… ahhh the sea. She is not so kind. She’s that kind of girl who likes to play with your feelings. You never know when she’ll be ready to move forward or when she is leaving. She won’t give you waves when you are ready and will bring the best swell when you’re on duty. We forever chase her, like trying to catch the moon on the mirroring waters of a peaceful black lake. And she always slips away from our fingers and wetsuits.
She likes our salty tears as much as we like her salty foam. But she doesn’t want you to be sad, not specifically. You can cry with excitement and fun too. She’d be satisfied too, but who really knows with Sea?
However, we should cry with excitement indeed. We are lucky to be able to play where Summer and Sea hang out. Don’t you think? Will you join us?
There’s a special feeling when you get to the sea for a quick swim, with nearly no one on the beach, when the water’s still warm and the sun is strong on the skin.
Who else loves to swim close to the bottom sand? It looks like there’s another sea behind, with its sand dunes (or waves) and all the reflections playing around…
And what about the light rainbows? And the light shining on all the white shells looking like diamonds underneath your bare feet?
I have so much fun in the water, even when it’s for a short amount of time, even if it’s occasional and not a daily thing. It’s dreamy as well, and a very precious time I’ll recall for a long time.
Not picture perfect, but surely filled with joy[/caption]
I created Tropical Fantasy, my first collection, to honour the beautiful mystery of exotic lands – not for what they are but how they inspire us to imagine better lives.
This collection was inspired by a real travel, and the images featured are from my own collection of memories, pictures and experiences. Traveling is a great experience in which the senses go wild, you find your curiosity again and the world seems more vibrant. I wanted to take some of that into our everyday lives so we can realise that sometimes you don’t need to go on a new travel to experience all of that. I hope you like it as much as I do. Here it is.
I’m very sad to be the one saying this but… Summer may be over already.
Temperature has been dropping fiercely here in Catalan lands and the weather is already calling for some blanket and sofa time. I must confess I’m actually wearing a long sleeve top and trousers (and I’m in need of changing my short socks for long ones or I’ll be freezing in no time). Sun is still warm but clouds have been coming and going all week. I hope this winter comes slowly. I hate wearing really thick clothing.
So… what now?
Well, the cold brings with it a lot of good things too. First of all, we will be able to go on new adventures! It was too hot and too crowded lately but now… Well, I predict a year full of great times spent outdoors.
Also, I can’t stop my mind from thinking about October already, seeing pumpkins and hearing about Halloween all over the place. Which, I don’t know why, makes me think of hot chocolate, the fireplace and chilling afternoons. But you must know how to make a cup of hot cocoa so I can’t share that with you. However, I’ve found some recipes that would make for a perfect plan for a Friday or Sunday afternoon.
– Here’s a cake that is also a cookie and a pie. I’m melting inside like a coulant. I want to taste that. Right now. Please.
– Wanna see who else is excited about Halloween? Follow @loveandasandwich and her cute monsters!
– What about something healthy for breakfast? Lately, I’m testing how to introduce some oats into my life and I’ve just found this recipe that could be quite handy. Are you ready for an a-mues-zing month?
– Did you ever hear about vegan bacon? Me neither but here it is. I’m buying cauliflower this week.
With more time to spend indoors, going back to our work and life routine we may end spending more time in front of our screens. But try not to! Contradictorily, I want to share a couple of articles (on the net) about it.
– Not everything is dark and sad in this world. Now look at what Disney is doing. I love it (spoiler alert: breaking princesses stereotypes with photography).
– I’m missing the surf. This cooler weather should mean more waves coming in right? Hope so. In the meantime, I was reading about this exhibition in California that “tells a Complex Message of Access and Environmentalism”. If non-surfer people loved the beach as we do (and if we all loved all natural places) would all of us take better care of them?
Now I leave you with these links and wish you the best time going back to “normality”. But let’s try it doesn’t become “normal”.
Doing the Thing
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A little friend we found along the way up to find the river
In the middle of July under the raging sun not all activities outdoors seem so appealing. These days are calling best for top-of-mountain, by-the-beach, and by-the-river time.
For this one time, we chose the river. We still put our (surfing) wetsuits to use. And in this case the route was pretty simple. No rappel, bug jumps or the like. Just on my comfort zone (it was my first time going down a river! So exciting!).
It was one as many other afternoons of last week when I heard the “let’s go do something” soon after lunch. I must confess I was comfortably sitting reading and happily avoiding the hot out there. We had talked about it before. And it was time to do it. We’d go down the river, walking and sliding through it. So I put on my bikini, we took the wetsuits and drove to somewhere close enough to the lowest part of the river.
Now it was time to walk up and go find our starting point.The walk was nice. At some parts, really really nice, when we started going by some water, surrounded by plants and big rocks.
Finally, we arrived to a fountain. There were some people there and they shared their afternoon snacks with us! So we started our journey down energised and refreshed.
When it was time to enter the water, ohmygirl, I was wearing my trail-running shoes and it felt so cold! I honestly had to take my feet out of the water for a while because it felt like pain. But we had arrived here to do something exciting (so new to me) and couldn’t get back.
So I’d step into the water, quickly go forward to the next stop / big rock, would take my feet out of the water and wait for them to feel better. Five minutes in and I forgot about it all. The feet get used and there is no more pain, no cold, and we are in full action mode!
The experience of going down the river was breathtaking. You get to see all the best spots, to swim, to see little waterfalls, to jump up and down many rocks. Even find some balls for the dog and see water snakes. All in all, my favourite kind of fun.
Arriving to the end of our route, we started hearing thunders. The middle of a river is not the right place to be if a storm breaks, as the water levels could rise in no time. There were clouds on top of the mountain but stormy ones. Also, the level of the river, after all these dry days was very low. Luckily (and unfortunately for the area) it didn’t rain.
We arrived to the end of our route, by a path that would take us back to the car and we called it a day. A very good day.
Oh my girl! Did I forget to mention that I was away for a month? I can be such a bad person at times…
Well, the thing is we (my bf and I) went on a holiday to the Philippines!! So exciting. Had never been on a travel like that: to Indonesia, different culture, tropical climate and coconuts and palm trees everywhere! We visited Cebu, went to Bohol and stayed most of the time to the beautiful island of Siargao. I could write about the travel for hours, but I just want to explain you the things I loved the most that weren’t the main touristic activities of Siargao.
So, let’s deep in!
1- First of all, what we did first.Visiting a big city
(Please, forgive me! This is not something you’re gonna do in Siargao, but you may need to in order to get there). Which was Cebu. We arrived at the Mactan-Cebu airport and found our way (thanks to many nice filipinos) to our guesthouse in the center of Cebu, taking many jeepney’s and seeing the afternoon get darker and darker. We stayed two days and came for another one before leaving. Did we love the city? No. Did we enjoy it? Not so much. What was undeniable is that it’s something worth to experience for a day at least. Bohol and Siargao are beautiful islands, plenty of little villages and a couple of small cities, but they look not much alike. It’s a different world. Cebu is crowded, the traffic is insane, the electric cables can’t say if look crazy or they are art… There is poverty and there are also the commodities and shops that we see in Europe. A place of contrasts. Eating out can be very cheap if you do so in local streets.
A main road in Mactan Cebu. It was more peaceful and closer to the airport, so we stayed there before taking our flight home.
2- Next thing you’ll love to do is to find a paradisiac spot.
Yeah, something like this.
Who haven’t dreamed about some palm-trees like that, by a white sand beach and crystal clear waters? Dream *completed*!
As we stayed over 20 days in Siargao, we had to spend quite some time in the beach, so this one was always first on the list. I think its name was Paradise Beach 😛 For those who surf, G-spot and Magic spot are pretty close, but far enough so we hadn’t to share a piece of beach with anyone!
3- A similar one, but not the same: explore *your* beach!
As you can imagine, there are many beaches in an island. Though Siargao is small, you still can try and find one nobody talked to you about. We did spent days going into little trips to new places with our motorbike and find some really nice places. Where we could relax, see a special village, an island or just snorkeling. Also bathing into rockpools. (There is a main attraction in Siargao called Magpupunko, which is a very beautiful rock-pool, but you may find some other beaches full of little rock-pools as well). We enjoyed one like this, and it was wonderful. Hot water, peace, silence and crashing waves on the horizon. Have in mind that they usually are rock-pools only when the tide is low. So it’s always good to know the tide times, as even paradisiac beaches doesn’t look the same in low tide than in high tide (you can ask a surfer to help you 😉 ).
You may even find your desert island. (My take though? I don’t ever want to be left in a desert island without a boat to get back).
4- Something tasty!
Go to a bakery and shop and try everything! (Ok, almost everything.) Pastries are very unexpensive and quite good. When we discovered them we couldn’t stop taking some for breakfast, afternoon snack… until we get bored. They are different to what I’m used to, quite fluffy. I loved the ones with something purple. They usually seemed to have chocolate and then we would find out that it was actually this purple thing (called “ube”). What’s typical in Siargao is “pan de surf” (surf’s bread), called like this because the shape of this small bread resembles a surfboard. You can find women baking them by the roads, burning coconuts. Also, they make “pan de coco” too, which is very good and tasty when still warm.
5 – Watching fireflies.
It came almost a surprise. I knew there were fireflies on the island but never thought about it. Then, in the way back to the cottage after a walk by the sea at sunset, we spotted them for the first time. It was already dark and looking to the side of palm-trees and gardens you could see very bright points moving in the dark. I’ve seen fireflies before, but never so bright. At the first moment I thought it was a spark or something similar. Then, other nights cruising on the motorbike we would spot more of them flying into the jungle.
6 – Step out of the beaten road.
Siargao is mainly an island with a big road that goes all along the coast, in a circular circuit and also crosses in the middle. A part from this, you may found some smaller roads and paths that will take you to villages, rural homes or just palm-trees. But who knows what can be hidden into the jungle?
We followed some small roads off the way to get to beautiful villages and also into the jungle. It’s not like the great imaginary tropical jungle we usually have in mind. Not so many colourful animals and rare plants. But you’ll surely spot some wonderful butterflies, small flowers and big leafs.
7- Be sure to know and go do some activities that you enjoy.
There may be days when it rains, or you have nothing to see or just want to not sit on the motorbike for two hours. So it will be helpful to know some activities you’ll enjoy doing. In my case, I had very good times taking pictures (what you see here is the top of the iceberg), we also enjoyed very much snorkelling and looking for shells and submarine life (so many starfish!!!). We “even” surfed! (That was on the list for sure). We also had some books with us, went to bars and the like, played and trained in the common area of our accommodation, etc.
I spent a month away from my pencil and watercolors. Hard for my hand
8- *Bonus point!* Bring good company (or find it along the way)
What else I wouldn’t like to miss
Visiting Bohol. I loved seeing the tarsiers, the Chocolate Hills and getting all over the island with the motorbike.
Spending some time with locals was also great. Kids were always happy to meet us and in most villages people were also very friendly. And getting to far villages always offered a new wonderful scenery.
Facts and tips about Siargao
It’s getting more popular and you may need to book your hotel previously or be able to change plans.
Because it’s more of a touristic place, prices get a bit more expensive than in others places of the Philippines.
Most tourists stay in General Luna. You won’t find so many foreigners while exploring the island. It’s also where you’ll find more accommodation options.
If you have questions, I can answer them (from my experience)… Because there are too many things that could be said.