How to survive a night shift

Saturday, 24 September 2016

Working when your body is supposed to be sleeping can be tough. It throws your sleeping pattern, eating routine and can take some adjusting to!! I have just finished my first week of 'out of hours' work for uni which actually wasn't too bad, and here's how you can get through working nights too...

1) Go in with a positive mindset: if you start off feeling rubbish then you're only going to make the night drag for yourself! 

2) Stay hydrated: if you're like me, you forget to drink during the day, never mind the night...but water is super important to keep any headaches at bay!

3) Bring comfy clothes: If you're lucky enough to catch a few hours sleep in between tasks, bring some comfy clothes to change into. It'll help your body get into 'time to sleep now' mode.

4) Bring healthy snacks: If you're not lucky enough to sleep in breaks then you're going to need energy to get you through the night! Healthy snacks like bananas, yogurts and nuts give you energy without making you feel slugging and bloated.

5) Invest in some decent ear plugs: It can be hard to sleep during the day so give yourself the best chance possible by blocking out the hustle and bustle of the day. I absolutely love theses ones.

6) Wear a night mask: Daylight sends signals to your body that it's time to be up and about. Stop those signals by wearing a comfy night mask during the day when you're catching up on your zzzz....

7) Reduce the brightness on your phone: Ideally, you should try and avoid using your phone when you want to try and sleep...but if you absolutely must, reduce the brightness setting! You can also download a free app called Twilight, which gets rid of the blue light on your phone which otherwise prevents you sleeping,

8) Play white noise: Another tip for helping you get your sleep is to play white noise from your phone. I always use this link. It'll also help drown out any outside noises.

9) Stay busy!: If you don't get many breaks in your shift , then my advice would be to power through and keep yourself on the go as much as you can. As soon as you start to slow down, your mind will too and you'll struggle.

10) Find what works for you: Because I was getting sleep within my shift, I kept my eating routine the same as normal...but if you're up all night, it might be worth shifting it round to re-programme your body into a reverse routine. I found power naps before my shift made me feel groggy but some people swear by them!

If you have any other advice on how to survive a night shift, drop them in the comment box below :)

p.s. I now have a facebook page which you can find here

Our African Safari Tent in Wales

Sunday, 11 September 2016

An African Safari Wales? Sounds a little mad but also pretty awesome as well though right?

We honestly had one of the best weeks staying here. The weather was amazing, think 28 degrees!! (Yes even in Wales) and each day was filled with different activities; mountain biking, segwaying, quadbikes...basically a load of things that would keep us outside.

So this was our tent, come on in...

The inside did not disappoint. I thought they'd be nice inside but even my high expectations were exceeded and these photos don't do the place justice! The bed, as you can see was huuggee and covered in African animal cuddly toys and hot water bottles, which we didn't need of course. 

And as you'd expect to find in any tent (Ha!) we had a much bigger than I'd expected bathroom! A his and hers sink, fancy bath and an open shower! 

It gets better though...

Wait for it...............




Each tent comes with its very own private hot tub! We spent most of the evenings in ours with a can of cider in hand, looking up at the stars. The poor TV didn't get a look in! 

Does it really get any better than this?

Staying in the UK has made me realise that you don't need to jet off somewhere to have an amazing experience. 

Every morning, I sat by the 'window' and looked out onto the ponies in paddock opposite, as I sipped on my tea. I remember feeling completely zen and rejuvenated when I took this picture. Clear mind and all that jazz...

What added to the safari feel was that the ponies lived around our tent, so we'd hear them chomping away at the grass. You could look out a window and see a cute little face staring right back!!

If you fancy staying somewhere a bit different then check out the website here 

p.s. I now have a facebook page which you can find here

Falconry Experience

Saturday, 3 September 2016

Kev and I wanted to go away this summer but after all the travelling to and from India, I decided a 'staycation' was what we know, to try and save some pennies!

We headed to the beautiful North Wales, which is actually right on our doorstep. A few nights of camping and glamping (more on those in a later post) and lots of outdoor activities were booked..making it not the cheaper holiday we'd hoped for!! It's always good to try something new because that's how you find new things you love.

One of my absolute favourite things we did was a falconry experience with the very knowledgeable falconer, Richard. 

We started out in the most adorable barn on site where we were staying that is usually used for events but today, it was to be used to fly the sweetest little barn owl called Renee. 

Whilst we handled her and got her to fly between us, Rich told us lots of facts about barn owls as well as answering our many questions! Renee turned out to be a right little diva, even turning her nose up at food when we tried to tempt her down from the highest beam she could have found!

We then went outside, where we were introduced to our two companions for the hawk walk; Edgar and Alan, the Harris Hawk brothers. 

As we walked through the fields, sun beaming down on us, the birds flew out through the trees and then back to our gloves! As time went on, we really got to know their personalities, making it easier to tell them apart. 

Alan flew off to hunt and came back with a little bird. When they get excited, their feet lock like a ratchet, so he got stuck to the branch when Edgar tried to steal it from him, meaning his only way of protecting his meal was to swing upside down!!

To try and distract Edgar from trying to steal Alan's food, we played a game with him, making him fly through the whole in this tree between me and Kevin, getting a little treat each time he did. He handled it like a pro!

Sometimes they were a little mischievous and didn't land where they were supposed to...

We were so lucky to have a clear sky to watch the pair soar up high above the trees and then swoop down towards us.

We then headed back to the barn for some tea and cake, whilst Richard put all the photos he'd taken of us onto a disk!

It was £90 for both of us for an hour and a half which is amazing value for money when you look everywhere else. There's very few places where you can have this as a private experience without being in a big group. The photos were a lovely little extra too :)

If you find yourself in North Wales and fancy giving this a go then here's the link to Rich's website.

p.s. I now have a facebook page which you can find here

Incredible India

Saturday, 20 August 2016

When I was younger, I found going into shops on my own daunting. It's only in the last couple years I've really found my independence and this summer I leaped out of my comfort zone and set off for India. 

   I'm in my final year at vet school so I went to do a surgical course, neutering street dogs to help control the population and control the rabies problem over there. You can read about the charity and the different trips they offer here. I highly recommend them if you're an animal lover :)

 I knew people said it was a culture shock, but my goodness was it!! The driving was absolutely manic! There was no way I was getting any sleep on the mini bus. 

There was so much to see as we crossed southern India; people selling coconuts on the side of the road, men chopping up raw pieces of meat swarming in flies, cages of live chickens, stalls selling spices, sweets and other goodies...and lucky for us, our drive over meant driving through the Mudumalai tiger reserve where we saw so many wild jungle elephants, monkeys, bison, wild boar and  deer!

After 10 hours on a plane, a 6 hours wait at the airport and another 9 and a half hours on the mini bus, I arrived at the training centre. Our hot water wasn't working and all we had was a bucket so my 'shower' was basically the ice bucket challenge. The toilets were those dreaded squat toilets you find abroad. Electricity came and went throughout the day. It was a bit overwhelming, especially as I hadn't slept for 48 hours but by the end of the trip, I embraced this way of living! It really does make you appreciate how lucky we are! 

I did two surgeries and two anaesthesias a day which included lots of puppy cuddling too! It was an amazing opportunity to build on my (basically non-existent) surgical skills and confidence. 

My favourite day was when we visited the local villages to vaccinate the dogs against rabies. The houses were made out of all kinds of materials, a mix of beautiful colours and there was lots of climbing up and down ladders to get to them! 

Can we all just take a moment to take in the cuteness of this little fella'!

We stopped for breakfast halfway through...and yes that is curry! Something I grew to love first thing in the morning and actually miss. Over there, they eat it with their hands so of course, do as the locals do!

On our day off, we got up super early and headed to the local tiger reserve. A huge bison walked right past the window of our mini bus! We also had a bit of an encounter with a's a good idea to close car windows when near monkeys, just a little tip. 

We also did a spot of shopping in Ooty where I bought sooo many shawls. I'm obsessed with them. I don't even wear shawls but anything with a colourful pattern will steal my heart. I have reluctantly given a few away as gifts to my family (love them for me please if you're reading this). 

I've never tasted a samosa as good as this!

They know their stuff!

As well as chocolate, Ooty is famous for its tea. We ventured up into the tea fields and found ourselves looking down into a valley where there were lots of wild bison scattered throughout the trees. A local man had to guide us back to safety as it turned out we'd explored our way into a bear's habitat who had already killed two people!! Who'd have thought a little stroll could turn into an adrenaline filled experience!

I still get emotional now thinking back to how amazing the trip was!!! On the way back to the airport we stopped at Mysore to see the beautiful palace. We even went inside, and did the whole taking off your shoes to show respect thing. 

The best part was of course meeting everyone in my group! I've definitely made some friends for life there :)

India. You are smelly, dirty and amazingly beautiful. You can't help but fall for the place. 

Anyone thinking about travelling or doing anything outside of their comfort zone, I'm yelling at you now to do it!! You won't regret it!

p.s. I now have a facebook page which you can find here

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