Starting off my new sections to my website with where I have spent the last 2 weeks. Barrow Campsite is an independent campsite situated in the beautiful countryside only a few miles out of Nairn. It is a relatively new site and ideal you if you want to explore the area or relax and put your feet up.
Onsite you will find a range of hardstanding and grass pitches with a semi wild area camping area. Also a couple glamping pods. In the summer months we usually park on the grass area but in the winter we prefer to have a hardstanding pitch with hookup. The facilities are clean and modern with toilets, showers, a dishwashing and laundry room.
Around the site there is a small kids playpark, it is very dog friendly with fantastic walks and an enclosed area with a good sized pond. I have done a bit of paddleboarding in the pond. There is a fantastic bothy with seating and a bbq area which is a great place to get together or shelter out the rain. Not far from the bothy you will find Hangman hill which is a well preserved bronze age barrow hence the name Barrow Campsite.
Nairn is only 3 1/2 miles away and if you are feeling energetic you could walk or cycle along the quiet country road. The town has a fantastic range of independent shops, supermarkets, restaurants, cafes, takeaways and a leisure centre. You also will find a beautiful beach on the Moray Firth with excellent views across the water. If you would like to treat yourself you could book a spa day at the Golf View hotel. There are also excellent public transport links to Inverness.
If you are like us and you want to explore the area there is so much to do within a 10-15 mile drive.
Brodie Castle is around an 8.5 mile drive where you can have a guided tour, explore the grounds and have an excellent play area. Entry fees do apply or free to National trust members.
Cawdor Castle is around a 5 mile drive and open in the summer months. Although we have never visited it is renowned for its beautiful garden and grounds. Entry fees do apply
Fort George is around an 8 mile drive and is the mightist artillery fortification in Britian and was built in the 18th century following the defeat at Culloden. Entry fees do apply or free to Historic Scotland members.
Culloden Battlefield is around a 9 mile drive and it is the site of the bloody battle of the Jacobite rising. Although a very eery it has an excellent visitors centre and a fascinating place to go. Entry fees to the visitors centre do apply or free to National trust members.
Brodie Countryfare is around an 8.5 miles drive and is almost next door to the Castle. This is a fantastic shop to explore their extensive range of clothing, giftware and food range and you can’t leave Brodie without visiting their fantastic restaurant.
Inverness is around a 15 mile drive but if you don’t want to venture into the city there is a large retail park on the outskirts that has a good selection of shops, a cinema and a large supermarket.
This is only a small selection of places to visit that are close by, there are many more plus Barrow is a great start/end point for the fabulous North Coast 500 route.
Barrow gets a thumbs up from us we love it here and it is definitely a home from home!!!
This is definitely not a list of New years resolutions that are usually totally unrealistic and you end up feeling even worse cause you have failed to achieve anything. So I have decided that a 2023 bucket list would be a great idea to motivate me and what ever I don’t manage I can roll over 2024 or just simply write off.
This may sound totally selfish but I am starting with myself. Precovid I looked after my skin, I ate sensibly, I went to the gym a few times a week. Covid hit and it all turned into a disaster although I did walk I took more photos then started blogging everything else took a backseat. We are heading to Iceland at the end of March which gives me the perfect target to get myself into a routine and get me fitter again. I have compiled a list of realistic looking after me tasks! Some of it is loosely based on the soft 75 challenge that some of you have maybe seen on social media.
Look after my skin by using the tonics, creams and serums that I own and not just treat them like ornaments by dusting them. This takes like 2 mins a day so no excuse.
Walk at least 10k steps a day, this used to be so easy but due to changing jobs the only walking that happens is walking the dogs or doing housework. So I just need to make more of an effort if it’s walking to the shop rather than taking the car and staying out longer when I do go out.
Use my 2 gym memberships at least 4 times a week so it is worth having both. At least one of the sessions should be swimming.
Try to eat healthier by cutting back on sugary snacks and cakes. I don’t want to start calorie counting so I will trial a few weeks so see how much progress I get purely by cutting back.
Drink 2 Litres of water or squash a day. This is easy to achieve once I get into the habit.
Where do I want to go in 2023?? We have already booked to go to Iceland but there are plenty of places in Scotland I want to visit too. Some of these places will depend if I achieve some of the first list, some are really easy just places I have not got round to and some I need to speak nicely to Mr C see if he will take me!
Since I bought my ebike I have always wanted to do the Burma Road trail in Aviemore but just never got round to it so I plan to do this in the Spring. The Burma Road loop is a 42km trail that rises high above Aveimore with views of the Cairngorm national park.
I don’t often visit Aberdeen but for so long I have wanted to visit the Winter gardens at Duthie park I thought it was too far to walk from the train station but it turns out it is less than a 3 mile round trip so no excuse really.
I would really like to return to Harris and Lewis this year hopefully in the summer holidays but I would like to do some research before hand so we make most of our trip.
Not sure if I can achieve this one but I will try – Get closer to completing all the sub 2000 hills in Aberdeenshire, Cairngorms and Moray. I have 21 left of 43 that there are so if I get to 30 I will be doing pretty good.
How do I want to use my brain??? Not only do I want to sort out my fitness I want to use my brain more rather than mindless scrolling I’m wasting so much time on things that have little or no stimulation to my brain or my mental health.
I would like to read more which I have already started, I don’t expect miracles as I don’t always have but if I can read a book a month I will be happy. That is only around 15/20 pages a day so can be easily achieved. I will definitely share my reads on my social media and will be looking for recommendations.
I would like to write more and expand my website, at least 1 post a month sounds like a good plan but i would like more but best not to put too much pressure on myself.
Lastly money which we can’t do much without it. Like most of us I try my best to keep my eyes on my pennies and spend sensibly but sometimes I go rogue and splurge on things I don’t need.
How much clothes do I actually need??? Not as much as I have anyway, my plan is to only buy items I need, if I do try my best to shop small businesses online or local. Failing that shop second hand on Vinted, Marketplace, Ebay or charity shops.
Make the effort to use the items I have spent my hard earned money on like my Ebike, Camera, 360 Camera and Paddleboard.
Be more mindful when food shopping so food items don’t go to waste.
Don’t be tempted to buy random stuff on Amazon just cause it looked good on a Tiktok does not mean to say it is good!!!
Lastly make sure I am using all my subscriptions like gym memberships, Netflix etc
This is all going to be a work in progress and I add to it as the year goes on, my plan is to update quarterly so my next bucket list instalment will be before I go to Iceland at the end of March. I really hope I have achieved something. I hope this may inspire others to do the same or even give you some ideas or motivation.
By the way I still have not bought a diary and no one gave me one for Christmas but I did get some rather nice notes books that I am sure help along the way!
After we got a wee invitation from the lovely folks at The Snug at Logie farm to come and review one of their lovely new luxury camping pods we couldn’t wait to go and explore. I didn’t really make much of a plan but I did put a wee post on Facebook looking for recommendations and I certainly got plenty! So after a trip to the Deli to stock up on snacks and pack a case I waited patiently for Mr C to finish work and get away. It was only a couple hours down the road for us so we made it down just after sunset. When we arrived at the bottom of the road I was intrigued to where the pods where. We headed up the track and got the first taste of the amazing location as we passed a herd of deer just hanging around in the park. A little bit along we reached the pods.
Wow we made it in time for the amazing view and a lovely we plaque with our names on it. Cause well its the little things its it.
Inside the pod we was greeted by a stunning modern interior and every gadget you could ask for.
We stocked up our fridge, Mr C played with all the buttons then we got our feet up and set too a Squid Games binge watch on Netflix. Well I think we managed to stay wakened till about 10 o’clock. The bed was so comfy.
Next morning we was wakened early but we had a long lie had a lovely Nepresso coffee in bed then got up and organised. After a wee chat with Jo the owner we headed to the Buttercup Cafe in Newbrough for brunch. Jo had recomnened it to us and we could see why it was lovely.
We hadnt made any kind of concrete plans just go for a run and see. First stop was a quick one at the round tower at Abernethy which is thought to date back to 1100. We couldn’t get parked as we had the van so it was just a snap of the camera before heading off.
Not far along the road was Auchtermuchty are next planned stop to see Jimmy Shands memorial. If you know the Bluebell poker you know who Jimmy is! This was Mr C’s highlight of the day! That set him up for the day and we had to listen to his music the rest of it! Even through the blue tooth speaker in the pod at night!
We headed for Falkland next but after we circled a couples time we ended up on a different road. It was actually the way to the Lomond hills. We took the opportunity to give the dogs a run about. The views from even the car park are great. There is a lovely picnic area and a well maintained toilet.
Back on the road again for the second try to get parked at Falkland. We eventually found the car park. I grabbed my camera and National trust card and went for a wander. Falkland is a lovely wee village with lots of quirky shops and nice looking cafes/pubs.
After a walk about I went along to Falkland Palace and gardens.
I decided to just have a look around the gardens.
The inside was very busy so I decided to look round the gardens. They were lovely and extensive. There is lots of wee hidden area and even a tennis court.
Back on the road again. We hadn’t really planned anything so we thought we would go to Scotlands Hidden Bunker. On the way there we went past the Hill of Tarvit mansion so we did stop for a wee look. Another place well worth a visit and there was a view point walk.
We couldn’t do everything in one day so next stop was Scotlands secret bunker.
This is a amazing fascinating place to visit for Adults and kids.
It’s a underground cold war bunker museum and its huge. With lots of interesting rooms and artefacts.
Our last stop of the day was Arstruther for tea for some of their famous fish and chips! We had to queue for a little while but it’s was lovely and well worth the wait.
We headed home before it got dark thinking we could sit outside with a gin! But the rain came on and oh my it’s rained a lot! So we snuggled up watched tv had snacks and enjoyed our last night in the snug before heading home the next morning.
Thank you for reading I have posted all the links below! The Snug was amazing and totally recommend if your looking for somewhere to stay in Fife!
When you do lots of walking there is 2 vital pieces of equipment you need. Good boots and comfy socks. The perfect pair of both will enable you to walk further and longer.
Last week Heather at Scottish Womans walking group posted some monogramed SWWG merino wool socks that were made in North East Scotland. So I was very interested to find out where. After a wee search I found Caledonia Hosiery on social media.
After wee chat online with the owner Steve he invited me along to his socks factory. I jumped at the chance. The inner geek came out as I am very interested in how things are made.
The company is situated in Forres Moray. It was started in October 2019 and started producing in April 2020. The owner Steve has actually spent half his working life making socks and is very passionate about it. This has now rubbed off on his wife Sue too.
Onsite the couple are producing 1000 pairs of socks a week each pair of socks taking around 8 mins to make. They produce various styles made from wool and cotton. They are all hand finished onsite. That includes washing and air drying before pressing on a shiny sock shaped hot press!
Although the company mainly design and produce socks for brands just recently they have set up a online shop at The Country Side store (link will be posted below). In the shop they have a selection of styles including their signature outdoor socks that I have been gifted to try.
I am super excited to try as not only are they locally produced. Compared to some socks I have purchased over the year they are very reasonabled priced.
My initial review they fit and feel very comfortable. I will be putting the them to some hike tests before I fully review but I do plan to purchase other styles.
I would like to thank Steve for inviting me along and giving a wee insite to how socks are made!