Monday, 29 December 2014

Christmas with the ‘CRANES’

After a long year of travelling and adventuring around this beautiful world we live in, it was defiantly a relief to be heading home to England for christmas .
(bit of beach art)

(view over London)

I landed in London where i spend a week with some really good friends ,getting festive ,finishing off my christmas shopping and just being generally merry ;)

 (this is what best friends look like )

After a week in London i hopped on the train and headed to the South West of England where i spent an amazing 6 days with my beautiful family in Croyde ,North Devon .
(puppy crane and little bro Christmas morning)

(Grandparents and my Christmas jumper)

(Mummy and Daddy)

After 12 months of travelling almost non-stop (not complaining) it was amazing to sleep in my own bed , wake up to a cup of tea with mummy and daddy ,spend some quality time with my little brother and just feel generally ‘AT HOME’ a feeling I have kind of lost contact with in the last few years .

(puppy crane)

At Christmas I totally transform from a mature 19 year old travelling the world , to a 10 year old christmas crazed kid , counting down the days to Christmas , making gingerbread houses , mince pies and decorating almost everything in the house I can .

(my gingerbread house)

(home made mince pies)

(proudly holding my gingerbread house )

Christmas is by far my favourite time of the year, surrounded by loved ones , eating amazing food and being merry and thankful for this amazing life I have.
Thankfully for the rest of my family Christmas arrived , I was up at 7AM to open my stocking from Santa , next stop was to wake up my little 13 year old brother, I know what your thinking (shouldn’t it be the other way around?) ,NOPE not in my house .
After rounding up family Crane , we all sit in the living room opening presents .
(thats the dogs favourite part)

(Archie trying to rip the presents )

(LAURA its Christmas)

When all the presents in sight have been opened its then time for the eating to commence , Christmas breakfast isn't that exciting in our house because by that time little bro and I have already usually eaten around 30kg of chocolate each and I prefer to save my self for lunch. 
As always my dad puts on his favourite Christmas songs that we repeatedly through out the day try to turn off , while we all try to help mum in the kitchen . By help I mean we just hover around and see what we can get a little taste of hehehe.
(christmas ham )

 When lunch is on the table christmas crackers are pulled and from there on is just a scoffing free for all , until we are all successfully in a horizontal food comer , its then time to watch christmas TV and play board games (that usually don’t last long as we are all too competative )

(3,2,1 FEAST )

In a nut shell thats basically christmas in the Crane house. I then get sad its over for another year , wake up boxing day and realise i look pregnant , so head straight to the gym , lucky mum and dad have one in the house haha .
(boxing day gym session)

I love going home , its so important not to forget where you come from and to remember the place that taught you all you know, for me going back to Croyde beach, the place I learnt to surf is always humbling.With it being so beautiful I feel truly blessed that I can always call it home , although having just landed back in Portugal does feel amazing with a few more degrees in the water and air haha.
 (Croyde beach )



Wednesday, 24 December 2014

San Fran Fun !

My final stop on my California road trip was San Francisco , the city in america i had wanted to always visit most,

San Francisco was basically the total opposite from the last place i had been ,in the National park , i went from my biggest worry being lions and bears, to parking tickets and spending too much money shopping . 
So a slight change of living of me but i wasn’t complaining i was so happy to be in San Fran .

(just one if the crazy San Fran streets)

I went straight to meet one of my friends for breakfast , who had just moved there from Portugal , after a good girly catch up we hit the shops .

(Zoe and I) 

After some retail therapy we headed to check the known sights of San Francisco , as well as eat some of the famous local foods , my favourite was the clam chowder served in sourdough bread , followed by some of the best chocolate i have ever tasted . 

(sourdough bread )

 (Clam chowder in sourdough bread .)

 (BEST chocolate shop ever )

My favourite part of my San Fran visit has to be seeing the Golden Gate Bridge , it was crazy to see something that you always see in photos and on tv in real life . 

 (Golden gate bridge in all its glory)
(Golden gate bridge tourist )

 So another city ticked of my list and San Fran had really made me start to miss home, it was the most european city i had been to in the last month ,great food friendly people. 

(Crazy San Fran street art )
Like that the trip down south began . 
This was a drive i was more excited about than most  as i was going to be travelling down South on a road called The Big Sur , for those who haven’t herd of The Big Sur ,its basically a road that has be built along the coastline for 90 miles (140 km) from the Carmel river in Monterey County south to the San Carpoforo in San Luis Obispo County and it was beautiful every mile of the way . 

(Eyes on the road  laura ) 

(little photo break on the Big Sur)

After that it was a night in L.A then a direct flight to London to see my family and friends for christmas .
I feel so blessed to have been able to travel and adventure  another part of this beautiful world now back home in England getting ready for christmas WWHHOOOOOOEEYYYY ! 

Tuesday, 16 December 2014

Psithurisma , a word of infinite sounds !

from the crazy city rat race of L.A i made my way to Ventura 

(Surfers point, Ventura CA)

,where i was greeted by perfect 3ft clean waves at a place called Surfers Point ,it was a sick little left and right ,so long that you had to pull off the wave before it had finished or you would get leg cramp.

(happy surf smile)

After my fun little surf i had a quick look around the town of Santa Barbara .
It was then time to start the 5 hour trip up north to the Yosemite National Park .

(one off the many sunsets i passed driving in that week , too many car hours!)

The Yosemite National Park is a place i had always wanted to visit since i had seen photos of trees so big you could drive a car through .
After the 5 hour drive arriving to the hotel was a real relief ,especially as the hotel was as awesome as it was , christmas decorations everywhere .
(finally i feel festive ) 

I can’t say the hotel check in was particularly normal ,when the lady at the front desk handed me a piece of paper explaining what you must do if you are to come across a bear , at that point i knew it was going to be a awesome few days .


After a sauna and an awesome dinner it was time for sleep to be ready for the adventures the next day.
Arriving to the Yosemite National Park was a mixture of feelings ,excitement as i was about to see something i had never seen before but also (A.) scared because of the bears , (B.) there was also mountain lions roaming freely around the park (they tell you if you see one don’t run just look BIG ) umm yeah ok , oh and lastly there was a huge storm coming so look out for falling trees .

So with all that in mind i headed in to the park .
it was amazing the average tree was bigger that the statue of liberty MAD !

(didn't want them falling on me thats for sure )

(tree hugger)

The trees were beautiful i love how nature can make you feel so small and insignificant its crazy how powerful it is .


After walking about 3 miles around the park and taking about a million photos of huge trees and wild life (thankfully no bears or lions ) 

(just some cute little deer)

 (got barrelled a few times )

(casually jumping over trees)

 (whoowwaa laura getting arty )

it was time to jump back in the car to carry on with the road trip next stop was San Francisco COLD .

L.C x

Wednesday, 10 December 2014

L.A ... over and out ...

The American dream is the only way I can describe my first day in California , after 3 weeks on an island , routinely going back and forward to the beach it was a bit of a shock to say the least ,when I arrived in LAX at rush hour, but it was nice to finally see some of the real America ..
View flying over L.A ! 

 My L.A gang signs 

I woke up in LA the first day and headed straight to Venice to a sweet breakfast spot called ‘KREATION’ its an awesome Cafe that sells great breakfast plates ,which I never new existed, as well as epic organic juices with up to 50 different yummy ingredient (50 shades of green) haha 
My shopping fuel 

After fuelling up on juice and coffee , i was ready to hit the shops of Abbott Kinney St, it was full of cute boutiques and rad places to munch , it reminded me so much of Shoreditch in London , everyone dressed immaculately as though they had just walked straight out of a hipster pinterest board .
 Even the kids had mad style !

After going in to around 30 shops , it was time for another coffee break , (haha europeans )
There was only one option for the next coffee spot, it was a place called Intelligensia , after a good friend who is about as much of a coffee fanatic as myself had repeatedly told me “ they sell the best coffee you’ll ever have “ around 1000 times , i thought it would be rude to not go check it out .
THE KINGDOM 'Intelligensia'

Although $27 dollars was a little pricey for two coffees and juice , it was quickly forgotten when i took the first sip of coffee .
And like that i was in love

It was with out doubt the best coffee i have ever drank .
(MASSIVE statement but I’m saying its the best coffee in the whole world )

Me after my coffee BUZZEEDD ! 

Buzzed on coffee I headed to Venice Beach where it was a totally different vibe from the hipsteresque vibe of ‘Abbott Kinney St’ , I got  straight out the car and was greeted by dogs with sick out fits on , sun glassed and even shoes as well as dancers busting shapes in the street and some crazy huge muscly men, but best of all some awesome skaters that I’m pretty sure had just skated out the film ‘Dog town Z boys ‘ .

My next stop was Santa Monica where i saw a sign that said $1 thrift store , so i parked up the car, apparently so fast in excitement I was on a red line and got a ticket , but nothing was dulling my hype after all the bargains I had just scored.
Looks like a dump but was a treasure chest !

After dragging my self away from the mountains of clothes it was time to hit Hollywood , or as some people call it Hollyweird and that is exactly what it was .
Hollywood in its most beautiful state ! 

Crazy people dressed as almost anything , from Spider Man to Tinker Belle .
Right after seeing all the obligatory sights of Hollywood I was out of there pretty sharpish .
So now no longer an L.A virgin , the road trip up North starts . 

LC x
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