Oh yeah, the Holiday Hits are back. Seeing as I am no longer an Australian expat – just for now, readers, who knows what the future holds – I thought I would bring back these wrap ups. Here’s a look at my life, my blog and my favourite reads from fellow bloggers this month.
Life has been different this month than the previous few. It was all about being settled. And broke. I missed my explorer life and my Vancouver friends, but it was time for me to come home and figure out the next step in this thing called my life. As soon as I was home on Magnetic Island, it honestly felt like I had never left. Had it all been a dream? Did I really travel across Canada and America? Did I really live for 15 months in a foreign country? Yes, I did, and it was the best. I just have to keep telling myself that when I am in doubt. Plus What’s App and Facebook Messenger help me keep the dream alive, so to speak.
But back to my reality, and that is being back home after four years living away from my parents. Now I remember why I moved away from Townsville in the beginning: I love the island where my parents live, I think they should stay here forever, but on the mainland there is just nothing there that excites me anymore and makes me want to move back.
Now I know that Brisbane is where I want to be by my birthday, I will make it happen – somehow. I like the city life, as I like having the constant options of new places to see and things to do. I love that it is only a short plane ride to Sydney, Melbourne and Townsville. It’s also great that I already have friends there to eat, drink and have fun with. It’s where my heart and head say is next – after that, who knows? Obviously not me!
Here is what I have been talking about on the blog this month. I have so much to say about my #BussingUSA journey that it is going to take me a little while to get it all out onto the website. But I promise it will all be worth it, and super informative, in the end.
December was actually the best month on my blog for a long time: 6 posts published and a lot more written to be shared with you soon. One of the perks of unemployment (basically the only perk though. I miss money).
- Australian Expats: 18 Months Away From Home.I made it 18 months away from my beloved Australia. Go team! Pop the champagne! Here I discuss my last month of travel and my goodbyes in Vancouver. Plus my amazing 30-hour journey home.
- Surprises and the CITYPass in Atlanta, GA. I was pleasantly surprised during my visit to Atlanta. I went into my stay there without any expectations, but I had so much fun at the World of Coca-Cola, Georgia Aquarium and CNN.Plus I did an Atlanta Movie Tour, which I will talk about in an upcoming post. Such a great world city to explore.
- Two Days in Nashville, Tennessee: My Tour of Music City. Nashville breathed music. It was everywhere I turned and I certainly wasn’t complaining. It’s a great city full of life. And country music.
- AAE Bourbon House Review. This was the cheap choice in New Orleans, but for $20 a night I got a comfy bed, spacious room, free pancakes for breakfast and a Walmart ten minutes away. It was everything I needed, because who really spends that much time inside in the Big Easy?
- An Aussie Christmas Special. The most popular post on the blog this month, I discuss how we celebrate Christmas down under. Yes, it is hot and the sun is shining, but that just means white sandy beaches instead of white snowy mountains.
- 2015 Reading Challenge. Let’s goooo! I am a little apprehensive about this massive challenge, but I am going to give it my best shot. I actually think it was more fun researching the books to read for each category. Yes, I am a nerd. You get used to it.
One of my favourite pastimes is reading other people’s travel, lifestyle, beauty and fashion blogs. For both inspiration and information. Here is a look at the posts I really enjoyed this month.
- Why I Love Limerick (And Why You Should, Too) by This Battered Suitcase. I have been a fan of Brenna’s writing for a long time. I don’t even know when I began reading her stories, but I look forward to each new blog post. Her storytelling is some of the best in the travel blogging business. I enjoyed reading about the friendliness of the Limerick locals. Having had an Irish boss in Vancouver (yep, an Irishman and an Australian working on an Australian food truck in Canada, make THAT into a joke) I know that they are a friendly bunch. But her description of their hospitality reminded me of my time in the Southern USA, where everyone was just too nice and welcoming. Lovely locals are the best.
- How to Sleep Like a Baby in the Icehotel by A Pair of Boots and a Backpack. I had the pleasure of meeting Kristin during my time in Brisbane. She is a pro behind the lens. This post is so informative about what it’s really like sleeping on and in ice. It’s not something I’ve really thought about doing, but it does sound like a bucket list item.
- 2014 in Photos by Hecktic Travels. This month has been all about wrap-ups of different bloggers’ years, but nothing can compete with Pete’s photos. I mean, just look at them. Breathtaking. This is the kind of photos I aspire to capture.
- The 10 Most Awesome Things to See in South America by One Step 4Ward. South America is definitely a continent I want to explore in depth very soon. Johnny has spent eight months there visiting every country, and I would happily enjoy doing the same: are you with me? This post highlights just some of the epic adventures you can experience in South America, and it gives me itchy feet. Now I just need a job to start saving once more, but I’ll be bookmarking this for future use.
I was fortunate to do a guest post this month on This is my South. It’s a blog run by Caroline of Caroline in the City. I talked about my time in Wilmington, North Carolina doing a walking tour that showed me the filming locations of many movies and TV shows, including Dawson’s Creek, One Tree Hill, Sleepy Hollow, We’re the Millers and Empire Records. It was AWESOME.
So tell me, what have you been reading this month?
All photos from my Instagram account.