Fall is my favorite season of the year, because I love wearing jeans and sweaters and cute booties! You would think I’d have had my fill of “cooler” temps during my 6 months in London, but the heat wave brought record-high temperatures and I’ve lived in shorts and t-shirts all summer. Now that I’m home in Florida, I hope it will begin to feel like fall in the coming weeks. (I mean, it IS almost October.)
So on the blog today, I’m sharing 5 Instagram accounts to give you some fall fashion inspo. I follow so many fantastic Instagram accounts, but I’ve narrowed it down to these 5 by scrolling through my Instagram “collection,” or “saved” posts. I use the bookmarking feature in Instagram to save posts I’d like to go back to later, especially outfit inspo. When I get around to it, I screenshot these “saved” posts so I can look up the pieces I love in the LikeToKnowIt app.
It was actually really enlightening to scroll through my bookmarked posts and see which accounts they’d come from. For example, I hadn’t realized so many of my “saved” posts came from @jaimeshrayber! Now I’m excited to share her account because I absolutely love her style and her feed.
Whether you’ve lived in the UK for a while or are merely visiting, chances are you’ll want to bring back goodies for your family and friends at home. There is so much for Americans to love about British culture: afternoon tea, the royal family, the English accents. So why is shopping for souvenirs so challenging? There’s no way to know what your mom/dad/sister/uncle/cousin might want, so you purchase the typical t-shirt or keychain and call it quits.
Look, I don’t blame you! There’s nothing wrong with t-shirts and keychains (I have both). When I lived in London as a student, it was really important to me to find gifts that were local and authentic. At the time, I’m not even sure I knew what that meant, much less where to find gifts meeting that description. I was totally guilty of purchasing last-minute trinkets at the tourist shop down the street.
In this post, I’ll go over 1) how to select appropriate gifts for family and friends, 2) how to select the best souvenirs for yourself, and 3) the best British brands to purchase from, including a list of gift/souvenir suggestions.
So this was an especially fun, out-of-the-box activity. The O2 Arena is a well-known indoor arena in London, hosting sporting events and concerts. I’d visited the arena multiple times before, once on my way out to Greenwich and twice for concerts (5 Seconds of Summer and Demi Lovato). What you might NOT know about the O2 is that you can pay to scale / climb to the top for a panoramic view of the river and the city.
“Up at The O2” is a bit touristy, for sure, but probably not something first-timers would consider or even know much about. This is why I’ve put it on my list for seasoned Londoners, because it’s something to do with family or friends in an area of town you probably haven’t yet explored.
Unlike other sightseeing / touristy activities, this is more physical. Keep this in mind for the rare dry and sunny day (or evening!). We went mid-morning on a day in early August, and it was quite sunny and hot. We were drenched in sweat by the end!
So I thought it’d be interesting to write a follow-up review, having worn the sneakers for months since! I’ve also just washed my sneakers for the first time, and thought I’d write a bit about that as well. (Are Allbirds truly machine-washable? How well did the wash clean the shoes? How do they feel after having been washed?)
Anyhow, I can’t believe my time is already up – in some ways it feels like it’s been forever, and in other ways I feel as though time has flown.
But 6 months truly is quite a bit of time. It’s strange to think that I’ve spent half a year in London. In that time, my job kept me pretty busy, and gave me so many unique experiences and opportunities. I thought, rather than attempting to write about it ALL, I’d pick my “top 3” experiences to share with you all today. (This is excluding the three weeks of personal travel at the end of my trip – I traveled to Germany and Austria with my parents and met my friend / coworker Kyla in Ireland. These adventures are a whole other story!) I’m limiting this post to my time as a Program Assistant in London.
Also, know that for the purpose of this post, I am writing about concrete experiences. If I were truly writing about my “top 3” takeaways from my time as a PA, it’d be centered around the relationships I developed with my coworkers and students.