Five Things to do in the Peak District

Hey Sweeties,

As some of you will know, after my wedding in early April Ian and I disappeared off up to the Peak District for a few days, as we are unable to go on our official honeymoon until early next year. And to be honest, I don’t think I would have had the energy to plan a big holiday, as well as my wedding and it also gives us something to look forward to and budget accordingly. Although on a side note, I am in desperate need of a proper holiday, like desperate. Anyway, I wrote recently that I have suffered a bit of the wedding blues which fortunately has seemed to have passed now, but I still thought it would be fun to reflect back on our three nights/four days away up in the north, and provide you guys with some ideas of what to do should you find yourselves up in that direction as well.

  1. The Devonshire Arms at Beeley

This was where we stayed for the duration of our trip so it makes sense to start with this. I remember pulling up on Monday afternoon and sitting in the bar having some lunch before we were able to check in, and thinking to myself that this was the exact kind of place I wanted to stay in. When we were planning our trip to the Peak District, I deliberately wanted to seek out a cosy hotel that we could just tuck ourselves away in but was in a good location to access some of the local sites and things nearby. I struggled a bit online so when I put the word out on Twitter for recommendations, someone came straight back with The Devonshire Arms at Beeley and it was exactly what I was looking for.

The Devonshire Arms is your classic countryside pub-hotel; our room was front facing and nicely sized for a double ensuite room and very comfortable. I brought my dressing gown from home with me but gowns were supplied if you wanted them.

We stayed on a bed and breakfast basis but owing to the location, we had dinner in the restaurant for two of the three nights we stayed and the food was amazing! Breakfast was also very good, along with cereals, bread, fruit etc. you also got a hot option included which set us up well for the day. I also cannot fault the friendliness and service provided by all the staff during our stay.

Peak District -Devonshire Arms Beeley

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Reflecting on 2015 & Last Day of Blogmas | Blogmas Day 24

Hey Sweeties,

Well I for one cannot believe how quickly December let alone Blogmas has gone by, how are we on Christmas Eve? It was really strange saying goodbye to my colleagues yesterday and saying “see you in 2016” which sounds like an age away, but is actually only next week. Crazy. But as is traditional at this time of year, it’s good to reflect on the year almost gone and remember that despite the speed in which it has gone by, there will have been some memorable moments and achievements packed in along the way. Here are some of mine:

Looking back at my post this time last year (here), my core ambition for 2015 was to move on in my career as I felt I was in a bit of a pit to be honest, I wasn’t happy. However, that drive for better paid off in April when I landed myself what is now my current role and I finally feel I am in a position that is at the level I should be at. Looking forward, I am delighted that most of my next career ambitions can be met with my current employer so I really can now just relax and enjoy my job and the company and people I work in and with. Got an interview coming up in the New Year or looking to take that next step in your career? Read my interview tips.

The biggest thing I did for myself this year was take myself away on my own with Trek America. It was without doubt one of the best experiences of my life and I met some great people that I will hopefully be friends with for many years to come. Read my travel diary here.

Badwater basin, Death valley

The best thing that happened to me this year, above everything else, was getting engaged to the total love of my life (here)! Next year now brings a wedding and a new chapter of life as a married woman which, while I am still getting used to the thought of being a wife (I still feel like a little girl inside), I am so excited and can’t wait.

Wedding magazines

I guess another fairly memorable thing that happened this year that is worth a mention is lopping off my long hair, I now have a bob which I love. If you’d said this to me last year that I was going to cut a fair chunk of my hair off I wouldn’t have believed you but I did and I don’t regret it one bit. Although I miss putting my hair up in a big chunky top knot.

New hair

I will talk more about my blogging ambitions for 2016 in another post very soon but as a quick mention, taking the plunge this year and self-hosting ClaireySweetie was pretty cool and I am glad I did it. I wrote all about the pros and cons of self-hosting your blog a few weeks ago.

And that my Sweeties, wraps up Blogmas for another year. I hope you enjoyed all my posts and also the fact that I posted every day, welcome also to new followers.

The last thing I now need to do, is wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a very Happy New Year (although I’ll be speaking to you again before 2016 dawns).

Merry Christmas

Enjoy yourselves.



Visiting San Francisco | Trek America Diary Days 11-12

Catch up with my Trek America Westerner 2 tour so far: Days 1-4, 5-7 & 8-10

Day 11: Driving to San Francisco 

I feel a bit sad this morning, I can feel the end of the trip being now only a couple of days away and the thought of not being with my Trek Family every day is dawning on me. We still have a couple of days but still, it’s present in my head; this past week has gone so fast, I have never known a week to go so quickly.

Our first stop on arrival into San Francisco was lunch with a stunning (despite rather windy) view of the famous Golden Gate Bridge and Alcatraz. This was followed by an opportunity to cross the bridge on foot -Lana dropped us off and collected us on the other side of the bride, I never knew the bridge was 1.5 miles in length!

Golden Gate Brideg, San Francisco

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Incredible Sunsets & Visiting Mumbai | The India Diaries Days 6-13

Day 6-13

From Ahmedabad, we took the train down to Mumbai and I almost cried when we arrived at our hotel as despite dreading the worst, it was lovely; clean, friendly staff and a great location for accessing the rest of the city.

We stayed down in the south of the city at Chateau Windsor, a hotel just off Marine Drive which lines the edge of the coast and was beautiful; the room even enjoyed its own balcony. Every evening after getting back from the cricket and before we headed out for dinner, we sat on the big wall that boarded Marine Drive and watched the sun set. Believe it or not, it was here Ian and I ate the best pizza of our lives and if you ever find yourselves in Mumbai in the future, you must check out ‘Pizza on the Bay’ on Marine Drive. I wouldn’t usually use this term but it was pukka! (or ‘gorgeous’ as our friend, Paul described it).


Can you spot me?

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Visiting India’s Shithole – Ahmedabad | The India Diaries Days 4 & 5

Day 4 & 5

Of everywhere we visited in India, this was the worst and I do not know what on earth made England have a test here. Without being rude but keeping it short, the place is a s***hole! Having said that, had we arrived here first, I would have assumed this was normal and (probably) not hated every moment we were there, or rather, not as much. Everything there is just stripped down basic and beyond the cricket, there is absolutely nothing to do.  View Full Post