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OBD: 2 Months in – A new blogger’s perspective

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I lie awake at night.  Spend my spare hours thinking about engaging topics.  Worry endlessly about networking.  Stress about content.  Tweak and then tweak again every feature on our site.  Speak with complete strangers.  What the hell is wrong with me…

This damn blog is what’s wrong.  I have OBD, in other words, Obsessive Blogging Disorder.

The problem is I LOVE IT!

I only started this blog about 2 months ago and already it consumes me.  I started it firstly for ourselves, so that we may look back in a few years to remember all the fun we had travelling when we are old and senile in our rocking chairs.  And secondly, for our friends and family so they can keep up to date with what we are doing around the world.

All of a sudden I realised that although our parents read our posts religiously (thanks Mums) they were not the only ones reading our blog.  People have actually given me feedback on facebook, twitter and in person!  Who would have thought.  And holy crap there are actually people out there, right this minute, travelling around the world making enough money from their own travel blogs!  Now I watch my stats counter (it barely moves) while having wonderful dreams of lying on a beach sipping on cocktails and making everyone else jealous as I watch the money roll in.

However, as everyone keeps telling me, the successes that a handful of others have found is purely done through hard work and persistence.  Sure it helps to be funny, have wild experiences and actually be an excellent writer as well but ultimately I think its a time thing.

So hopefully this bold realisation will help me step back, get back to my roots and write for myself, my family and my friends.  Hopefully this will lead to better stories, better travel and an overall better blog.  And recover my old sleep patterns.

Thanks for reading.  Now go share the max out of this post to bring me those successes!  Seriously, what are you still doing reading, GO, SHARE, PROSPER!

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13 Comments

13 Comments

  1. fourjandals

    September 14, 2011 at 11:33 AM

  2. bronwen

    September 15, 2011 at 4:24 AM

    Love them!!!! Keep writing – you have a talent! xo

  3. fourjandals

    September 15, 2011 at 10:54 AM

    Haha thanks Mum.

    • Jerick

      September 16, 2011 at 10:46 AM

      I love that your mum follows your blog. :))

      • fourjandals

        September 16, 2011 at 2:04 PM

        Yea she rules plus its the best way to let her know what we are up to haha.

  4. Dave and Deb

    September 18, 2011 at 6:01 PM

    Good luck with your blogging career. I think you are doing an amazing job. Already you are engaging with fellow bloggers and making your mark. Having a love for it is the first step. If you love what your doing, it doesn’t matter how long it takes to succeed, you’ll always keep trying until you reach your goals…And then you’ll make new goals:-)

    • fourjandals

      September 18, 2011 at 8:05 PM

      Thanks Dave and Deb,
      Means a lot to get feedback and we definitely love reading about all your travels as well!
      Great advice and look forward to chatting and sharing with you guys again soon.
      Cheers
      Cole and Adela

  5. Lucy

    October 3, 2011 at 6:50 PM

    I’ve just come across your blog and enjoying catching up with your posts. I’m about 3 months into blogging too and glad to see I’m not the only one obsessing – is it wrong to think “What post can I write about this?” every time you do anything! Keep up the good work and best of luck with building up the site in the future.

    • Cole and Adela (fourjandals)

      October 4, 2011 at 7:25 AM

      Thanks for checking us out Lucy! Haha I love the name of your blog and you have some great photos too. These first few months I am sure are the worst I think for a new blogger as you can see all the successes that other people are getting and just want the same. And I am the same, always on the lookout for a story which sometimes makes travelling worse I think.
      If you need a hand with anything then let us know.

  6. Neil

    October 4, 2011 at 2:03 PM

    Cant argue with a word of that post, its exactly how I feel about almost 4 months of blogging. Feels like I never stop looking at analytics, and constantly hope for comments on articles.

    You guys are doing a fine job though, keep it up and i’m sure you’ll get there!

    • Cole and Adela (fourjandals)

      October 4, 2011 at 4:02 PM

      Hey Neil thanks for giving us some encouragement. I think all us beginners need to keep supporting one another where we can as it makes such a huge difference getting little bits of feedback (even negative) every now and then. Its just a bit of give and take to get your name out there for sure.

  7. Duane and Kim

    January 4, 2012 at 8:30 PM

    Hey guys – we are loving your blog! I cant believe you’ve only been blogging for 2 months. For the past 3 days we have been working on the set-up our own blog and we have found that once you finally made the decision to ‘just do it’ you are consumed by the excitement of getting your own journey and perspective out there and communicating with others. Again, well done – your blog is an inspiration!

    • Cole

      January 5, 2012 at 9:27 AM

      Thanks Duane and Kim. Nearly done 6 months now. Those first few weeks/months are so hard. Who am I kidding, I think it will always be hard! Watching your numbers just stand at a few people a day is really hard but persistence and hardwork pays off. If you want any tips then get in touch we are happy to help. And hopefully we will see you on your travels!

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Take a Luxury Trip to the Cotswolds

The Cotswolds are absolutely breathtaking at any time of year, and are a cornerstone of English culture – have you booked your trip yet?

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Go on a relaxing holiday in the English countryside with a luxury trip to the Cotswolds. Staying in one of the luxury cottages Cotswolds-side will make for the perfect escape from the day to day routine. You can enjoy first class accommodation while touring the historical honey stone villages and breathtaking countryside of the Cotswolds.

The Orchard, Upper Oddington

The Orchard is located down the street from the Horse and Groom in Upper Oddington, a charming village with classic Cotswold honey stone homes. This large cottage has plenty of space for a group and boasts six bedrooms, a living room, and a patio in the outside, private garden. The newly refurbished property still manages to provide a welcoming space for children. The kitchen has an area where kids can play while preparing. Local restaurants like The Porch House and The Old Butcher’s in Stow or the gastropubs in Kingham make great options for eating out.

Bruern Holiday Cottages

The Bruern Cottages offer the comfort of a hotel mixed with the privacy of home. These luxury cottages Cotswolds houses make for charming holiday homes create the perfect country lifestyle with surrounding gardens and the finest facilities. The Bruern has 12 luxury cottages Cotswolds welcoming guests for a single night up to eight weeks. Guests enjoy self-catering service meaning they do not need to provide for themselves when they first arrive. The cottages stock the kitchen with food like milk, butter, eggs, and sausages plus a luxury welcome basket with champagne, artisan cheeses, and homemade cakes. Guests have full access to first-class amenities like a pool, spa, and gym as well as activities for children.

Notgrove Holiday Cottages

Stay in a home surrounded by rolling fields at the Notgrove Holiday cottages. These luxury cottages Cotswolds have expansive views of the countryside that you can enjoy while staying in one of four chic rental properties. Groups can rent all four, which sleeps a maximum of 32 people making it great choice for large families vacationing together. The stylish cottages have been converted into homes from former barns giving it a modern, rustic feel. The adjacent field has animals like goats, donkeys, and alpacas grazing adding to the appeal of the area.

Bridge House, Lower Mill Estate

Sitting in a 450-acre nature reserve about six miles south of Cirencester, the Bridge House has a great location for activities. Guests can enjoy the nature reserve by going on walks or participating in watersports. The grounds themselves have tennis courts and a heated swimming pool. You can take in the scenic atmosphere sitting outside on the wrap-around deck or warm yourself by the woodburner in the large sitting area. The house also comes with board games, a barbeque, and a kayak.

Cleevely Cottages

Looking out over farmland, the Cleevely Cottages are 16th century stone properties in the hamlet of Holwell. The three-storey luxury cottages Cotswolds have two bedrooms and sleep four along with an extra sofa bed. The kitchen comes with cooking equipment, and the sitting room has a wood-burner. Nearby, guests can visit the Cotswold Wildlife Park, Cotswold Water Park, and the inns and cafes of Burford.

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Top Outdoor Survival Skills you need to stay Safe when Traveling

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Traveling is great, but you need to stay safe while doing it. Make sure you have what it takes for that by learning some top survival skills.

What to pack for the Camino de Santiago?

Organize your backpack

This doesn’t seem like much but it’s vital for preventing accidents. Place the bigger, heavier items at the bottom of the backpack, so they don’t destabilize you when you’re walking. Otherwise, you can end up with various pains and strains, or even fall down.

The things you need fast, like a pepper spray, water or a multi-tool should be kept handy.

Improvise a shelter

Find a bigger log and support it on a rock or on a bigger tree, then cover it with a tarp/ rain jacket. Make sure there’s plenty of room underneath for you.

Use a knife to cut some branches and brush for covering your improvised tent. You’ll probably need a pocket knife sharpener too, considering how many branches you need cut.

Improvise a sleeping bag with some branches and dried leaves, over which you can throw a blanket. Make sure your shelter isn’t in a valley or downhill, in case it rains. Instead, look for natural protection from a cliff wall that would guard you against the elements.

Don’t take cover in caves, there might be wild animals inside. Also, get rid of all the insects hiding under your shelter. Packing a tent and sleeping bag would be the ideal choice, though.

Stay hydrated

Bring a water purifier wherever you go. There are different kinds, some that use tablets and some that look like straws. Either way, these are great if you don’t have a potable water source nearby.

You can also collect rain water or heavy morning dew. Plants can provide a good source of water too. Tie a bag around a bigger bush or around a bigger branch filled with green leaves. The leaves will “sweat” right inside your bag.

Find food

It’s better to have some power bars or cans wherever you go. But if you don’t, you can always improvise a fishing pole out of a long, flexible stick and some rope. Or you can set another trap for critters, but that would take some time if you don’t have hunting skills.

It’s better to eat bugs and insects, like termites or larvae. These are rich in calories in protein. Just stay away from flying insects, colorful ones or obviously poisonous ones. Don’t try to eat spiders, bees or mosquitoes.

Avoid eating plants and mushrooms, if you don’t know exactly which one is good. But if you see an animal gnawing a certain plant, it could be comestible.

Make a fire

If you don’t have waterproof matches, you need to use friction, with a couple of dry sticks or by rubbing some batteries on a piece of steel wool. You can also use your eyeglasses above your kindling if the sun is shining bright.

After you’ve produced the spark, transfer it on your tinder nest and keep adding branches, from small to big.

Other things you need

With that said, you should always take a few survival tools with you, like the ones we mentioned here. A satellite phone, a map, and a compass would also help you, even if you have a GPS. And never forget your First Aid Kit at home.

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The Beauty of the North: What to do and See in Northern European Countries

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Beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder, but the beauty of the North is plain for everyone to see. If you’re planning a cruise in the Northern European Countries, we’ll tell you all about activities you can enjoy and things you can’t miss.

Eilean Donan Castle, Scotland

Finland

If you want to enjoy a nice sauna in the great outdoors, there are countless resorts here that offer tourists the possibility of relaxing in a hot sauna in the middle of a snowy setting.

Visit the coastal city of Helsinki, renowned for its night clubs and architecturally-rich buildings. It’s also a cultural paradise, so you can go sightseeing. If you’re more adventurous, Lapland offers you dog-sledding, visits to Santa Claus Village or the Aurora Borealis.

Scotland and Northern England

These countries have a fairy tale charm and a spiritual background. The different civilizations that populated these territories left their mark, with prehistoric sites, museums, and castles.

Stonehenge is one monument you can’t miss, but there are other museums and archaeological sites. You can hike in a mountain landscape, walk the endless green forests, or photograph the wildlife. Bird watching is another popular activity here, so browse Optic Gear Lab for the best equipment.

Iceland

An interesting country from a geological standpoint, Iceland is a country of extremes. Its ancient volcanoes, lava landscape, and hot springs stand beside a glacial landscape, with glaciers and snowy peaks. The villages on the seashore are picturesque, and their inhabitants friendly.

Nature photography, hiking and walking on the seaside are the main activities here. There are also plenty of bars, pubs, and clubs to enjoy a bubbling nightlife, particularly in Reykjavik. And if you want to know more about the Viking history, the Viking museums will satisfy your curiosity.

Norway

Norway offers a varied landscape too. Take the Geirangerfjord region as an example of outstanding scenery. But there are plenty of mountains to hike here with breathtaking vistas.

Hiking in the National Parks of Norway will take you through an impressive range of glacial landscape, including lakes, rapid flowing rivers with waterfalls and stupendous glaciers. You can even see Santa’s raindeers rummaging through these forests.

And since a big part of Norway lies in the Arctic Circle, you can watch the Midnight Sun or the Northern Lights that fill the sky with spectacular colors. Or if kayaking and whale-watching are on your bucket list, you can do that in the Lofoten Islands.

 Sweden

A rich culture obvious with every one of its museums, Sweden is also a modern country. It’s rich in architecture, and the Stockholm City Hall can prove that. You can also walk the gardens of its palaces and royal castles, or its middle-age old cathedrals.

Its Arctic Circle National Park is another must-see. You can admire the Aurora Borealis here too, or go hiking.

Where will you go?

Regardless of your chosen destinations, the Northern European Countries have it all: rich history, awe-inspiring vistas, and great nightlife. So where will you go? Leave us a comment below.

 

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Meet Cole and Adela

Cole and AdelaWe have been wearing out our jandals (Kiwi for flip-flops) on our travel adventures around the world since 2009. We think our blog is thought provoking and a little witty. But we have been proven wrong before. Find out more about us here...

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