While I was home I met up with a couple of friends who were also shopping in town. I'd eaten not long before but they suggested that we go to Mowgli. I've wanted to try this place for months since I first heard about the swing seating they offer! It turns out only 2 tables have swing seats and they are both tables for couples, not three.
We waited for a while to get in, it's best to get a reservation here, but it was well worth the wait.

The decor was spectacular, heavily featuring monkeys on absolutely everything! Ropes hang from the bars above the tables and there is a giant table for large bookings, separated from the rest of the restaurant by ropes and a giant ornate double door.

Ornate double doors and 'private' area

The food here is Indian Street food served like tapas, so we ordered a selection of dishes with a couple of bowls of rice, roti and puri bread.

 We ordered picnic potato curry, Mowgli paneer, Mowgli chip butty, ginger and rhubarb green dahl, yoghurt chat bombs, Himalayan cheese toast and tea steeped chickpeas.

Water bottles with monkeys!

The yoghurt chat bombs and Mowgli chip butty came out first. The chat bombs were something I haven't really seen before, chickpea and yoghurt stuffed balls, with the perfect balance of spice and cooling yoghurt. My friends warned me that they can be messy to eat so it's best to try to eat them in one bite! I was looking forward to the Indian take on a chip butty, and it was amazing. Crispy curried potatoes with red onion and chili wrapped in a roti. When I ordered it I think I was expecting chippy chips in spices but this was far better!

While we were finishing these dishes, the rest arrived. I was hesitant to try the rhubarb and ginger green dahl, I prefer red lentils usually and didn't think the combination of rhubarb, ginger and lentils would work. I was wrong, this was one of my favourite dishes. Go and try this dish.

A few of the amazing dishes, I love the plates too!


We all fought over the Mowgli paneer, Katie and David's favourite dish. Soft cubed Indian cheese in a spiced tomato sauce - I think next time we'll get one each!

The picnic potato curry was my choice, potatoes and tomato with Bengali Five Spice. Comfort food at it's best.

The Himalayan cheese toast was served with the best lime pickle I have ever tried in my life, and growing up near the balti triangle that's a bold statement! I would like to bring a jar many jars of this pickle back to Iceland.

The tea steeped chickpeas are cooked in a Darjeeling tomato sauce. It's an interesting combination and was really delicious! We have Darjeeling tea available in Iceland so I may have to try this one at home.

Katie-Marie and David enjoying dinner

My first, but definitely not last, visit to Mowgli was incredible! Next time I'm in Brum I will make a reservation ahead of time, and maybe even try to snag one of the swing chairs!

They now have a Mowgli cookbook for sale which I will bring back home with me next time to try to recreate some of the dishes here (we need more Indian restaurants in Reykjavík!).

Reading up on the company I discovered that Nisha Katona, the founder, hand picks 'curry virgins' to work in the kitchen and hand trains them! I think that's amazing!
Nisha, if you ever open in Reykjavík, which you definitely should, please pick me!

Loppy x

*This post was not sponsored, all opinions and recommendations are my own.
A comfort zone is a beautiful place, but nothing grows there.

I can't tell you the amount of times that I have told myself this. Whether it be starting a new job, a new class or leaving the country I always remind myself  that whatever the outcome, at least the borders of my comfort zone will have widened.


It's terrifying the first time. You will want to run back within your limits and you keep telling yourself that it doesn't feel right, everything just feels wrong when in reality, everything just feels different. It's new and overwhelming, and maybe a little intimidating but soon enough it will feel comfortable and familiar. That's how you know you've stretched your limits.



The first time I flew solo I felt sick with worry boarding that plane. I was convinced that I would lose my passport or my money. Maybe my carry on case would somehow go missing from the overhead locker. Maybe I'd oversleep and miss my flight home!
None of those things happened. Nor did they happen when I flew solo a couple of months later. In fact, many solo flights later, they've not once happened. Guess what...I don't even worry about those things anymore. In fact, I really enjoy my solo flights now!


When I made the decision to leave my life in England behind for new adventures in Iceland it all felt very daunting. I knew that I wanted to make changes in my life and I knew that I wanted to be in Iceland but I was still afraid of everything that could go wrong. What if I didn't make friends? What if I can't earn a living? What if something happens back home? What if I can't learn the language? What if I feel exactly the same as I did back in England?

Almost a year later and I can answer all of those questions now.
1. I have made great friends here and still regularly communicate with friends back home. I also have the best boyfriend ever here!
2. Even on minimum wage in Iceland I feel like I am making a fair living, which I couldn't in the UK.
3. The first extremely serious family emergency in my life happened 2 months ago and is ongoing. This has already happened now and there's no point in worrying anymore about this potentially happening.
4. I am learning and continually gain more confidence communicating in Icelandic. I even try to use it in my job.
5. The first time I returned to England I could no longer relate to that life. Everything has improved so much for me in the last year and I've become accustomed to my new lifestyle. I don't think I could feel the way that I did in England even if I tried!



I honestly feel that by pushing your own boundaries there is nothing to lose, but plenty to gain.
I'd love to hear your experiences, let me know in the comments how you felt the first time you really left your comfort zone.

Loppy x
*LoppyLoves is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites. Just so that you are aware, I may get a small fee for any purchases you make through links on this post.

One of my favourite clothing and homeware brands is Cath Kidston. I've been buying their products for years and love them for their quirky vintage-esque British style and high quality. One of my favourite dresses to comfortably travel in is a Kidston, but I own many others too! Here is a list of travel products that I either already own (and frequently use!) or are high on my wishlist.

Cath Kidston Victoria Ivory Rose Oilcoth Travel Wallet*

I was bought one of these as a gift by my friend Rachael a while ago (thanks Rachael!). It has since become one of my favourite possessions and I can't imagine travelling without it now! It has labelled slots for my passport, boarding pass, a card slot and a detachable currency purse - literally everything I need. This rose print is gorgeous.

Cath Kidston Floral Print Oilcloth Weekend Bag*

 My grandmother bought me one of these weekend bags for my 16th birthday...8 years later it's still as good as new and it gets used a lot! They're a decent size but not ridiculously huge, perfect for a weekend trip.

Cath Kidston 'Ashdown Rose' Oilcloth Hanging Roll Toiletry Bag*

This is the next thing I want to buy! I never really understood the point of these until I worked as a hotel housekeeper, they're so useful! A lot of people use them and they save so much space, they can hold more toiletries than I ever need on holiday and just hang off the door handle/shower rail/door frame etc.

Cath Kidston Blue Painted Birds Travel Wash Bag*

This wash bag is just too cute not to include on this list! I mainly use these bags for domestic trips rather than international just because I usually fly carry on so need to use clear bags for my liquids, but I also use these day to day in my handbag. I keep pens/makeup/tissues etc in them.

Cath Kidston Wild Rose & Quince Travel Trio Set*

I love the scent of this travel set, it's my favourite in the Cath Kidston range. This set contains body lotion, shower gel and 2-in-1 shampoo and conditioner - all packaged in adorable Cath Kidston print.

Cath Kidston Hot Air Balloons Oilcloth Passport Cover*

I'd definitely have damaged my passport now if it wasn't for the oilcloth cover! The hot air balloon print on this one is very unique, no chance of taking the wrong passport. This cover also fits into the travel wallet mentioned above.

Cath Kidston Retro Polka Dot Luggage Tag*

This is the print that most of my Cath Kidston travel products are in (except mine are light blue rather than red). This cute luggage tag is an affordable addition (or start) to your Cath Kidston collection.

Hope you like the products mentioned, let me know in the comments what your favourite Cath Kidston item is!

Loppy x

*This post was not sponsored, all opinions and recommendations are my own.
On Friday I decided to go shopping after visiting my mom, being home for a couple of days meant that I could actually go clothes shopping without spending a fortune! After visiting a few shops I realised how hungry I was and decided to go to my favourite veggie cafe...but not a single table was left and I was at a loss of where to go. I wandered away from Martineu Place and spotted the new vegan fast food joint in City Arcade. It had lots of free tables so I decided to look at the menu.

Fressh opened as a fast food establishment in October 2017 and offers a 100% vegan menu with many gluten-free and allergen-free options. The menu is varied and I was intrigued to see a vegan alternative to tuna, made from chickpeas, which I haven´t seen offered elsewhere in the city. Everything is made in-house on a daily basis. I was also very pleased to see that the coffee is sourced via Direct Trade which gives a better deal to coffee farmers.

Loads of great options for a reasonable price

I walked in and was greeted by 2 lovely servers who didn't rush me and answered my questions politely. I decided to go for the meatball sub with fries and a homemade lemonade. When I was 17 I was put off veggie meatballs after eating some that were still frozen in the middle and haven't eaten them since, but the sub looked so tempting so I gave in. After trying it I realised that I´ve been missing out for the last 7 years - they're so good!

The sub was made fresh in front of me and didn't take long at all.
I'm not usually a fan of vegan cheeses but the mozzarella on the sub was delicious! The skin on fries were perfectly seasoned and moreish. The absolutely best thing about the meal was without a doubt the lemonade, in fact I bought a second cup! The lemonade was £1.85 for a generous serving and the the food came to £5.45, not bad for the city centre!

Best fries I've had in a long time and the lemonade is delicious!

The cafe had a clean but cosy vibe, the walls are white without making the atmosphere sterile. The rustic wooden tables and green graphics on the walls give the space some colour. A few plants are dotted around which ties the place together.

Graphics and plant decorate the walls

I noticed that they also had a breakfast menu, offering vegan alternatives to popular breakfast food such as sausage and cheese muffins, and breakfast burritos with tofu scramble. I wasn't in the city long enough to try the breakfast but I can't wait for next time!

Spoiled for choice at breakfast

Overall I think the cafe is well worth a visit, especially considering that I only paid £7.20 (including drink) for delicious, freshly made, cruelty-free fast food in the centre of the second city. This place is definitely a budget friendly option when travelling. They also deliver via Deliveroo and UberEats which is worth knowing if you´re working in the local area or staying in an AirBnB.

Loppy x

*This post was not sponsored, all opinions and recommendations are my own.
Mom was confused. She writhed around a lot trying to get comfortable, so high on morphine that she was unaware of her broken bones. Her eyes could only open a tiny bit and she couldn't speak. She could squeeze my hand when asked to but it would drain her energy and she'd fall asleep not long after. She learned to communicate by raising her eyebrows to say 'yes' after a while. She could mouthe 'really?', and she'd give us a confused look to say no.

I asked if she was in pain, she wasn't. There were too many drugs being pumped into her for that. It was like caring for a toddler at times. She kept trying to pull her feeding tube out and scratch her head, she didn't understand when we told her that she couldn't do that. This made her moody a lot and she'd refuse to communicate for a while.
The nurses tried every day to remove her feeding tube as she contstantly pulled it out until she was finally ready to eat proper food. Mom had to wear padded gloves most of the time to stop herself from pulling tubes out or scratching her head. She was allowed to have them removed if someone was holding her hand whilst visiting, she quickly learned this and used it as an opportunity to pull her tubes the second the glove came off!

After a few days she was given a device that clipped into her trachea tube and helped her to speak for a short while. It gave her a robotic sounding voice and if she had it in for too long it would affect her breathing. She started to learn phrases like 'that's alright!' and 'it is isn't it' which she would use all the time - even if they were out of context!

Seeing the improvements reassured us enough to return home for a few weeks so we booked a flight. Each day saw tiny positive changes - even if there was a long way to go- until our 14th and final day.

It was finally time to return home to Iceland.

Mom exploring


I'm trying to raise money to frequently visit my mom during her long recovery, I would really appreciate any donations and please share the crowdfunder if you can.
Loppy x

You can donate here...

Read the article here...

Read part one here...

Read part two here...

Read part three here...
My family all started saying their goodbyes to each other as visiting time came to an end. I decided to wait for the last person, and then it hit me - she wasn't coming.
I'd been expecting my mom to burst through the door chatting away and smiling in a brightly coloured jumper, it had slipped my mind that she was the one in a coma.
I stood up to leave, unaware of where we'd be staying. We hadn't booked a hotel and we couldn't afford to either. My aunt was staying at my nan's flat and I didn't think that there'd be room for us but fortunately there was.
On the drive home we stopped at the chippy for dinner, no one had eaten much all day. For that first week we ate takeaways every night as no one felt like cooking (or eating for that matter).

Over the next few days various family members visited and it was nice to see everyone. My dad, who lives in Wales, changed his work location for a week so that he could be closer to me. He took Biggi and I out for dinner most evenings which was a nice distraction.

On the third day I realised that I should let mom's cleaning clients know that she wouldn't be working for them anymore. I looked through her phone contacts and send a group text to every name that had 'CLEANING' written after it. There were over 20 names and I knew that she didn't still work for this many people but I had no way of knowing who I should and shouldn't text. I left my number for anyone who wanted more information and told them not to reply to mom's phone. Over the next few days the messages and calls came. Most didn't reply, some sent their regards and a few offered help with anything we needed. I decided not to reply to anyone who text back on mom's phone. I was already so bored of looking at my own phone! I desperately wanted to turn my phone off to stop the constant messages and calls from coming but I knew that it needed to be left on in case the police called with an update.

After the public police appeal and crowdfunder was launched, my facebook inbox was flooded with messages of support from friends of mine and my family. People whose names I didn't recognise messaged me claiming to be old friends of mom. The police had warned us to be weary of unsolicited message from strangers so I wasn't sure who to trust. I only gave details to those who gave me proof that they knew mom (eg. exact details of where they used to work together etc.)

On the 7th day of mom's coma my nan's oldest brother passed away. He had been fighting sepsis in another hospital.

On the 8th day mom woke up.

The family together under better circumstances (my 21st birthday)
Mom was dressed at Medusa, 2nd from the right


I'm trying to raise money to frequently visit my mom during her long recovery, I would really appreciate any donations and please share the crowdfunder if you can.
Loppy x

You can donate here...

Read part one here...

Read part two here...

Read part four here...
*LoppyLoves is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites. Just so that you are aware, I may get a small fee for any purchases you make through links on this post.

Quick dry leggings

The weather is constantly changing here, and with day tours to waterfalls and geysirs it's almost a guarantee that you'll get soaked at some point during your visit. Pair that with low temperatures during the winter and you'll be freezing for the rest of the day! You'll want to be prepared with a pair of quick drying leggings under your clothes. I once walked behind Seljalandsfoss waterfall wearing denim jeans, and it was the first stop of the day! Needless to say my jeans became uncomfortable to walk in for the rest of my tour.

These breathable leggings from Helly Hansen are ideal.

You can get them here*



Don't wear jeans behind a waterfall!


Waterproof over trousers


An extra layer of protection is always useful, especially on day trips.

These trousers pack away into their own pouch, perfect for keeping in your backpack - just in case!

You can get them here*



Pack-a-mac

I´m not sure if this is just a British thing as my foreign friends have never heard of them, but a pack-a-mac, cag-in-a-bag, mac-in-a-sac or packable parker as it's known is invaluable on hiking trips. I took an 8 hour hike last Summer, the weather was beautiful but about halfway through there was a heavy rain shower that came from no where! Luckily I had a packable rain mac in my backpack so I didn't get drenched.
I love this floral print one* but if you'd prefer something simpler then this plain black one* is perfect!


Pack-a-mac emergency on Reykjadalur hike


Windproof Jacket

In the winter the winds are very strong, if you don't feel too confident about a pack-a-mac keeping you dry then I'd suggest a windproof jacket.

You can get one here*

Knitted Accessories

Reykjavík has plenty of shops to buy locally made hand knitted products from. Just in case you'd like to come prepared, I'd recommend this cable knit set of hat, convertible gloves and neck warmer from Heat Holders.

You can get them here*

Hand Cream

Yes it might sound strange but with harsh winds here during the winter your hands will dry up very quickly! O'Keefe's Working Hands is the cream that I used when I was a goldsmith to repair my hands and I swear by it.

You can get it here*

Swimsuit

There's so many thermal pools here, you have no excuse not to visit at least one! You can usually rent a swimsuit at the public pools but it's best to be prepared. This one from Speedo is described as 'black and lava red', perfect for Iceland!


Plenty of chances for a swim


You can get it here*

Sunglasses

It might be hard to believe but sunglasses are a must during the Icelandic summer! If your heading to an outdoor pool you'll notice everyone wearing their sunglasses while relaxing in a hot tub!

These aviators are perfect*

Hiking Boots

Finally one of the most essential items to bring to Iceland - hiking boots! There are so many hiking trails around the country that you don't want to miss out on! I personally use Karrimor hiking boots as they're reasonable quality and inexpensive.


One of the many hiking trails around the country


You can buy them here*

So that's my list of essentials for travelling to Iceland. What did you find the most useful on your trip to Iceland? Let me know in the comments below!

Loppy x

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