31 July 2018

Things That Make You Go Oooooo (July 2018)

Untitled

I almost forgot to post today because I totally didn't realise that July was over! This month has been really crazy, I've hardly slept, I seem to eat all my meals standing up, I'm juggling about 20 different projects but life is good. I'm thinking I might take a short blogging break during August so I can catch up with the family and enjoy my birthday, but knowing me it won't last long as there's just so much I want to share that's happened to me over the past few months. I hope you are all well and enjoying the summer and if you need a break from the sun (or rain) here's some links to keep you occupied....

♥ 10 Things to Remember When Everything You Want is Out of Reach

♥ 5 Simple Tricks That Will Turn Every Day Into An Adventure

♥ 3 Little Things You Should Do Every Day Before Noon

♥ 13 Ways To Cheer Up Your Friend When She's Down

♥ 5 Mental and Physical Changes You'll Actually Notice When You Start Meditating

Tiger

♥ 6 Surprising Signs You Need More Sleep

♥ 7 Things That Have Really Helped My Mental Health Recently

♥ 28 Way To Relieve Stress For A Happier Life

♥ 7 Things You Need to Know to Live Your Best Life and Make a Better World

♥ 10 Tips For Becoming Fearless

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♥ 11 Healthy Ways To Calm Your Anxiety

♥ Kyoto Autumn Sightseeing Guide – 12 Places You Must Visit

♥ 13 Ways To Simplify Your Life

♥ 14 Hacks That Will Save You a Ton of Money

♥ 5 Tips For Taking Care of Your Mental Health

strawberry pickin' ii.

♥ 6 Ways to Deal with Sleep Anxiety

♥ 37 Things to Do on a Sunday Night When You're Bored

♥ Seven Easy Tips For Creating An Amazing About Page Inspired By Online Dating

♥ Let’s Get This Party Started: Unique Birthday Rituals!

♥ 20 Reminders That May Comfort You When You Feel Anxious




Love & Popcorn
Cate
xoxo

25 July 2018

Cute Cafe Shops in Bangkok - Daddy and the Muscle Academy / Pixie Dust Cafe

Cute Cafe Shops - Siam Square - Bangkok - Thailand

There is a currently trend in Bangkok for every cute shop to have their own cute cafe and I love it! These "Cafe Shops" seem to be popping up everywhere and I feel like it's my mission to visit them all I mean there's nothing better than just relaxing in a cute cafe after a long day shopping and these places are perfect for both with the added bonus that don't have to trek around in the hot Thai heat to find a nice place to grab a refreshing drink because they're right there in the store!

Daddy & the Muscle Academy - Siam Square - Bangkok - Thailand

Daddy & The Muscle Academy - Siam Square - Bangkok - Thailand

Daddy and the Muscle Academy is one of my favourite stores in Bangkok because unlike most of the other "Cafe Shops" I've visited they stock their own clothing designs as well as vintage clothing and items from other independent indie designers which I'm a big supporter of. The whole shop is decorated in kawaii kitsch style which reflects the brand well and definitely worth a visit if you're a lover of cute and unique things. While the prices may be higher than a lot of other stores in the area it's worth it as this is store is unlike most others as it's a shop that supports, promotes and showcases indie artists and designers who produce products and clothing that are unique and can't be found anywhere else.

Pixie Dust Cafe - Siam Square - Bangkok - Thailand

Pixie Dust Cafe - Siam Square - Bangkok - Thailand

Pixie Dust Cafe is a small cafe located in the back of the store which sells really cute drinks and cakes, they often host events for Kpop fans to where they give away specially designed cup sleeves for idold birthdays and anniversaries so it's worth keeping up with their Instagram to check out when these events are happening. The decor of the shop lives up to its name as it's like something straight out of a fairy tale and their Butter Beer is out of this world, it's so good it's possibly one of the best drinks I've ever had in Bangkok so needless to say I'm a regular there!


What brands do you think should open up their own cafe?
Love & Magic
Cate
xoxo

Psssst if you want to see more awesome cafes from around the world you can click the button below, buy me a coffee, get treats & a shoutout on my next post



20 July 2018

The Elephant Retirement Park - Chiang Mai - Thailand

Elephant Retirement Park

Elephants are one of my favourite creatures and I've been lucky enough to have some amazing experiences with them over the years. Elephants are very beloved in Thailand and there has been a big movement to help conserve them and end zoos which force them to beg and perform. I have definitely noticed over the recent year how there are a lot less elephants on the city streets and how the attitude towards animals has changed, a lot more people are aware of animal cruelty and less people are supporting this exploitative practice and just want elephants to live our their natural lives in the jungle, which is how it should be. That being said sadly there still are a lot of places where it is common practice to ride and see elephants perform and while I understand tourist come to Thailand to see elephants I ask that you please consider of the lives of these elephants, do a little research and only visit the places that support and conserve these beautiful creatures.

Elephant Retirement Park

The Elephant Retirement Park is one of these places which does not offer any rides or force the elephants to do tricks or beg for treats, instead gives them a place where they can be free from chains and hard labour and enjoy their lives in harmony with the humans who take care of them by simply treating them with the kindness and compassion they deserve.

Elephant Retirement Park

One of the major driving forces for my to return to Thailand and learn my native language was so I could help rescue, rehabilitate and educate people on animal welfare and how these animals should be respected. I try to highlight the smaller charities as much as I can as I know how much they need the recognition and support. The Elephant Retirement Park is funded entirely on donations, they don't ask much from you either and a day spent learning about and being next to these beautiful creatures is less than $80 which is such a small cost especially when you think of how much food alone is needed for these animals to live on. The price of a day with the elephants also includes transport to the park from Chiang Mai and a delicious so they really aren't making a lot of money and need as much support as we can give them so they can build a better environment and rescue more elephants from the tourist and agriculture trade.

Elephant Retirement Park

Being this close to these beautiful creatures really is just a life changing experience, they're just so loving and gentle. It's not my first time being this close to them, I've been to zoos, I've seen them perform and sadly I've rode on them to but this is the first time being this close to them since I made a real conscious effort to never again support any cruelty against any creature and the atmosphere was completely different. I really felt the love and respect, seeing the elephants free to run about and play in the mud and just be themselves, there were no picks axes, no shouting, no stress, there was just an aura of awe and genuine happiness.

Elephant Retirement Park

There are so many charities in Thailand dedicating their lives to preserving the world's creatures and giving them a better life and they need all our support, I had an absolutely magical day and it really warmed my heart. So if you do visit Thailand please be conscious of the places you visit and how they treat their animals and make more of an effort to support the charities that want to give these creatures a better life.


What is your favourite animal?
Love & Sugar Cane
Cate
xoxo

15 July 2018

Anime I'm Watching & Loving!

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It feels like forever since I've had the chance to really sit down and enjoy some anime, lately I just seem to have no time for TV and it makes me really sad as I really love just relaxing and escaping into a different world for a while but at the same time I'm busy for all the right reasons so I can't complain too much. I'm really out of the loop with all the anime news this year but that might be a blessing as it means I can finally catch up on all the old seasons I missed haha, be sure to leave me some anime recommendations though and let me know what you've been watching so I can add them to my watch list for later.


干物妹!うまるちゃんR
I finally got round to watching the second season of Umaru-chan after my visit to the pop-up cafe in Akihabara many months ago and I have to say I loved this season just as much as the first, in fact maybe a little bit more as it shows a much softer side to Umaru, yes she's still a lazy, crazy, anime obsessed, junk food eating, otaku but you get to see a different side to her in season 2 and how much she actually cares for her friends and her brother and it's really sweet. This season is a lot more character focused than the first and the side characters all get their own spotlight, I felt like last season it was more about the "fan service" with some characters but this season gives them a bit more backstory and depth and of course there's the typical amusement park and festival episodes which seem to appear in every slice of life anime to enjoy to haha! Umaru-chan is just such a fun series to watch, it's sweet, light-hearted and all to relatable and I hope they'll be more series in the future.


연애하루전
A Day Before Us is a webtoon series from Korea about the blossoming of love and those cute tiny moments when you realise you're really falling for someone. I'm so happy I found this on YouTube that I just had to share, it blends my love of anime and KDramas together so perfectly, from the dreamy animation, the soft colours, the heartfelt soundtrack and super sweet characters I loved it all! This series left me feeling so soft and squishy inside but also a little sad, I mean where's my romance already? But wow I had no idea such a thing existed and I want more, it's so cute and I definitely recommend you checking it out, each episode is only a couple minutes long but will leave you with the warmest, sweetest feeling inside.


サンリオ男子
Sanrio Boys is basically about a group of boys who come together through their mutual love of Sanrio characters. I honestly was not expecting to love this anime as much as I did and I thought it would be hella cheesy and full of fanservice which I'm not going to lie it was at times I mean you can't go one episode without that obligatory anime abs or shower scene and of course the beach episode but I ain't complaining, I enjoy the cheese as much as the deeper storylines but back to the point I wanted to make is that this anime really touched my heart. At its core it's about not being ashamed to love the things that you love, about wanting to become better person because of the things that you love and surrounding yourself with people who love and encourage you for who you are, and supporting the things that you love even though they may seem out of the box. My high school days seem like a lifetime ago but this was definitely something I relate with and I love that Sanrio is delivering this message to anyone because who cares if you're a guy who loves Sanrio as long as it makes you genuinely happy that's all that matters.


ザ・リフレクション
The Reflection was an event that occurred worldwide that caused some people to wake up with super powers, some become heroes, and others villains. So this is an anime which was actually created by Stan Lee so I had to give it a watch. The storyline is similar to Heroes and Inhumans and a lot of the characters share the traits and superpowers of heroes I'd seen before but at times it did get quite confusing as many of the characters seems to appear out of nowhere without any motive or backstory, I was still left confused as to why The Refection happened and why only certain people were affected but I won't get to deep it is what it is a simple super hero story about people gaining powers and their choices about what to do with these powers. It's not an anime I would likely watch again but it was still interesting to see this type of anime and of course Stan Lee making a cameo in it to.


コンビニカレシ 
This is the story of six High school students' and their lives that revolve around the convenience store on their way from school. I initially thought this would be some sort of Clerks style anime but it's actually just a regular slice of life, shoujo romance anime and the "combini" hardly features in it! I wasn't too disappointed though as it's still quite cute and very similar to A Day Before Us in terms of storyline although I did find myself getting slightly bored at the repetitive storylines of the different sets of characters towards the end but it was a anime I could relax and not think too much about while watching, again I probably wouldn't watch it again but if you're a fan of high school romance anime then it's worth checking out.


Don't forget to enter my anime giveaway!
Love & Strawberry Soda
Cate
xoxo

10 July 2018

Cherry Blossom Season in Chiang Mai, Thailand

Cherry Blossom - Doi Pui - Chiang Mai - Thailand

When you think of sakura flowers or cherry blossom season you immediately think of Japan and Hanami but did you know that we have our own cherry blossom season in Thailand? Sakura season falls in the cooler months in Thailand during December and January and can only be seen in the high hills of the north but it's definitely worth a trip up to see them as they're beautiful and it's a whole different experience from seeing them in Japan or anywhere else.

Cherry Blossom - Doi Pui - Chiang Mai - Thailand

The northern hills of Thailand are really beautiful all year round and you can see all kinds of beautiful plants there. As the climate is cooler in the north and the soils more fertile you can find all kinds of different flowers, fruits and coffee grown there which you can't find anywhere else in Thailand, strawberry season also coincides with cherry blossom season so from December to February you can also go strawberry picking.

Cherry Blossom - Doi Pui - Chiang Mai - Thailand

Coffee is also grown on Doi Pui in Chiang Mai, which is the place I visited to see the cherry blossoms, so while you're taking in the beautiful view of the sea of pink you can enjoy a fresh cup of organic coffee cultivated by the native tribes of northern Thailand, the perfect Hanami experience and of course if coffee is not your thing they also grow tea to but the coffee is worth a taste as it's my some of the best I've ever tasted!

Cherry Blossom - Doi Pui - Chiang Mai - Thailand

Most people tend to visit Thailand during the summer months but my favourite time to be in Thailand is during the winter, the weather is much milder and the trees are in full bloom, it's just a beautiful time to be there, it was so amazing seeing the usually green hills of Thailand a sea of pink and I can't wait until the end of the year so I can go back and visit them again.

Have you ever celebrated cherry blossom season? Don't forget to check out my giveaway!
Love & Sakura
Cate
xoxo

05 July 2018

Into The Woods - Chiang Mai - Thailand

Into the Woods - Chiang Mai - Thailand

For the past couple years Chiang Mai has been my home and one of the things I loved most about being there is the cafe culture, there are so many amazing little cafes and hideaways all over the city and as coffee is grown in the northern hills of Thailand you can always be sure you're getting something special. One of my favourite cafes in Chiang Mai is this fairy tale hideaway tucked just inside the walls of the old city, Into The Woods.

Into the Woods - Chiang Mai - Thailand

Into the Woods - Chiang Mai - Thailand

Walking into this cafe is like walking into a dream, from floor to ceiling the cafe is decorated in various fairy tale murals, cute funko figures and props, there's even a bookcase full of books and games for you to check out while you enjoy your food and drinks, it's a place that you could easily spend the whole day relaxing in.

Into the Woods - Chiang Mai - Thailand

I found out about this cafe because I was blown away by their latte art, seriously just check out the owner's Instagram because some of the things she's done are amazing from Disney characters to Game of Thrones to realism to movie posters. My coffee came with this cute bear latte art on it but if coffee isn't your thing you can order many other drinks as well as Thai and Western food which is prepared fresh to order and they also have adorable cakes which seem to be super popular as they almost always seem to be almost sold out when I visit there!

Into the Woods - Chiang Mai - Thailand

Into the Woods - Chiang Mai - Thailand

Halloween is the prefect time to visit this cafe because they have special horror themed food and drinks but still all year round you can enjoy the story book ambience and take a break from reality so if you're in Chiang Mai and need a break from all that temple hopping I definitely recommend a visit Into The Woods.


Where are your favourite places to visit to take a break away from reality?
Love & Pumpkin Lattes
Cate
xoxo

Psssst if you want to see more awesome cafes from around the world you can click the button below, buy me a coffee, get treats & a shoutout on my next post



01 July 2018

Kawaii Anime Lucky Bag Giveaway!

Love at first sight

It's been a while since my last anime giveaway and a lot of people where asking when I was going to do another one so even though my Japan adventures are long over I thought I would host another one anyway in the hopes that I get to go back sometime soon haha! So here's another little surprise anime lucky bag for you to try your chance at winning.


I won't tell you exactly what's in this lucky bag as that's all part of the fukubukuro fun but there's a nice diverse selection of charms, jewellery and gashapon toys included which should please all tastes. So if you want to be in with a chance to win this month check out the widget below for details on how to enter.


What's your favourite anime?
Good Luck
Cate
xoxo
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