the back of the van

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a little look into the back of our lovely van, well equipped and ready to take us on our trips.

these pictures were taken in one of my favourite places; in the pine forest in Seignosse. the place to escape the summer heat and the summer crowds. we have also been lucky enough to spend time in this forest with so many of our friends from home.

now we are home, i'm really looking forward to spending summer weekends going on van trips to our favourite places in the UK.

head chef

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one of our favourite things to do in the van is cook, and experiment with new dishes. we spent the majority of our evenings in France in the pine forest cooking up a storm on the bbq or cooking our veggies in the van. Calum and I regularly have battles about who is head chef and who is sous, however I definitely think that on this occasion, as you can see by the photographic evidence, I was in fact the head.

when wandering in the van, it's difficult to keep food for more than a couple of days due to the hot temperatures, so we would normally base our meals around vegetables, and only really buy meat for a BBQ or a one off.

a few of our favourite meals to make in the van;

- van fried rice (named ourselves)

- vegetable wraps

- barbecued jerk chicken (the odd occasion when we have meat)

- spanish omelette

- vegetable curry

 

 

 

french fancy

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shirt / h&m shoes / birkenstocks sunglasses / raen optics

after a brief hiatus in France visiting the parents, and after having two weeks of beautiful hot weather; we are now back to reality, and back to the gloomy British weather. reminiscing about our evening walks in the French countryside, along with my new best friend Binky the beagle.

just a small selection of pictures from the beginning of the trip, in my trusty second hand panama.

 

the open road

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//Switzerland//Campello - Galicia//French Riviera//

a few 35mm pictures from our 2013 trip. looking forward to spending the weekend cleaning and sorting out the rolling home, to prepare it for the long journey.

also struggling to come to terms with the fact that we won't be spending the whole summer on the road, exploring more of Europe. Fingers crossed this won't be the case for next year.

back to the baltic

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our love affair with Sweden started last summer, where we explored every inch of coastline up to Stockholm, and fell in love with the Swedish culture. we were also lucky enough to spend an unforgettable weekend with our friends James & Astrid in Astrid's parents summerhouse.

so to celebrate James' birthday this year we took a trip back to the summerhouse in Lovestad, this time minus the vodka and the heavy hangover! the summerhouse is a traditional Swedish cabin set in the middle of nowhere, surrounded by beautiful countryside.

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as we only had a few days to explore, we spent our time wisely. long walks in the forests, along with our new friend 'sausage' the dog, who seemed to take a liking to us, as he decided to follow us for the full 3 hour walk! our evenings were spent eating delicious food and drinking copious amounts of red wine. on the saturday night we visited a nearby restaurant to eat agg kaka and ribs, which was definitely a highlight of the weekend. and of course, we had to take a trip to our beloved 'Max Burger'.

when in Sweden over the summer, a Max Burger was our treat - we seemed to treat ourselves on about five different occasions, but we were desperate to go back, so a quick trip to Lund before the airport was a necessity. overall, a weekend of celebrations & relaxtion, topped off with a lot of food! we can't wait to go back!

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fourteen

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fourteen... only fourteen days until we set off for our next adventure. unfortunately this year is only a short 16 days compared to last year, but we will hope to fit in as much as possible. first stop my parents house in Benest then onto Hossegor - hoping to get there before the all mighty crowds in the height of summer.

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just fourteen more days until we spend our evenings in the outdoors, having BBQ's in the pine forests of SW France, or drinking red red wine until our stomachs are warm.

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fourteen days and counting...


a girls guide to vanlife

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it is sometimes difficult for a girl to get used to the idea of living in a van for a long period of time with no warm showers, no toilet or washing facilities, and no proper electricity; the list goes on. although, this is just part of the adventure.

here are a few of my 'girlie' essentials;

1 - the life saver for all van trips is dry shampoo! i can not live without the stuff

2 - face wipes - you never know when you will be having your next shower!

3 - large water bottles - there may be a time when you have to wash your hair on a roadside, the more bottles the better!

4 - 2 in 1 shampoo / conditioner - beach showers are definitely not warm enough to do a full hair wash!!

5 - a good hairbrush, otherwise dreads will form!

6 - suncream - as a red head, I attract the sun more than most people, and when in a van there is not always the option of keeping cool and in the shade.

7 - razors - self explanatory

8 - plenty of toilet roll - again, self explanatory

9 - limited clothes - year in, year out, i always pack my cupboard in the van to the brim, and end up only wearing half of it, only take the necessities & always remember your walking boots ! (oops)

10 - books, books & books - as awful as it sounds, there will be days where you have nothing to do, but lie on the beach in the sun, or sat in the forest trying to escape the blazing heat (such a hard life) so the more books the better. we ended up reading 17 altogether!

life in a van may seem like a nightmare to some, but i wouldn't want to spend my summers any other way!

 

tack

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Mölle//Lovo//Borås//Helsingborg//Baltic//Öland

A selection of images from our summer adventure that ended in an unexpected detour to Sweden. By far the most beautiful and exciting country we have been to in the rolling home. Our days mainly consisted of exploring deserted beaches and forests, drinking cups of tea & driving further up the coast to find the next nature reserve to stay in for the night - pretty perfect if you ask me.

 

 

#3

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//Dresden//Monaco//Galicia//Baltic//Cariño//St Tropez//Ponte de Lima//Ravensburg//

Kim & Maie - our friends from Ravensburg. We spent a night of eating freshly caught fish and drinking local red wine in North Spain, and this resulted in us spending a weekend with their friends & family in beautiful south Germany. We will be repaying them for their hospitality this summer.