Nature and Us: Jathilda

I had a submission last month sent in by Jathilda. It is a beautiful read and I was delighted to receive it. I hope you enjoy it as much I did.


Hardly any topic is as much discussed as environmental matters. Yet there aren´t enough efforts to disburden our beautiful earth. Against this backdrop, it is more important than ever to take action. Whether that might mean buying groceries at your local market, reducing emissions by riding the bike, supporting sustainable businesses or raising awareness for this theme.

The blogger Talitha Tulloch from Talitha’s Travels created a series called #natureandus which revolves around our planet, the breathtaking wonders it´s offering us and how we can give
some eco-friendly love back.


Sometimes we seem to forget what an actual honor it is to live on this planet. How lucky we are to catch a glimpse of nature´s miracles.

I can still remember the moment, when I first experienced my love for nature.


It was 2004, when toddler-me visited my second home, the Philippines, for the first time. My father´s German and my Mother´s Filipina, and although I was born and raised in Germany, I always felt a deeper connection to my Filipino roots. After we had visited our relatives in Manila, we traveled to Boracay, the most breathtaking place I’ve ever been to.

When we got off the plane, our hotel room wasn´t ready yet. We used this spare time to take a break from the flight in an adorable café, which was only a couple of steps away from the beach.

After my mother ordered some beverages, I became very impatient and fidgety. All I could think about was
jumping off my chair and running into the turquoise, sparkling waves. Which is exactly what I did after another five minutes of annoying my mother with my chair acrobatics. Since my bikini was still
locked in a suitcase, all that a café guest could see, was a cheering toddler in Hello Kitty panties, stumbling towards the beach on the most excited pair of legs

The water touched my feet, and in that moment I felt pure, genuine joy. Until today I feel the most happy on the beach.

Beaches fill my heart with bliss and every sense of stress, irritation or
helplessness disappears. Nothing compares to this wonderful bond with nature.


That´s why pictures of coral bleaching, littered beaches and plastic-contaminated oceans are not only making me sad, but furious. The good thing is, that we have still time to turn this ship around.

We can still take actions to make this earth liveable for future generations, to make sure that the waves
of enlightenment hit our children or grandchildren, too.


-Jathilda


Thank you so much Jathilda for your submission! Here are their social media links to find more about them:

Nature and us: Forests

When I started this project, I started to talk about it with a coworker. We spoke about how the Japanese use forests to help him de-stress. He mentioned how he notices the difference to his mind and body as soon as he walks amongst the trees. He can feel the stress leave him. He feels better.

It got me thinking, why does this happen? Why is it important we all get out into nature?

The Japanese have a type of therapy that they find is working. It’s called Forest Bathing.

Silvotherapy – Forest bathing.

(Photo from: Global wellness Institute)

What is it? Walking into the green and soaking up the air, feeling the tension, anxiety and stress leave your body. Studies taken by Japanese researchers found that just taking a 40 minute walk among on a forest floor reduces the glucose levels in diabetics, it has a positive affect on those who suffer with depression and even anger.

How can we do this though if there are no forests left, for both us and the wildlife?

Can you guess roughly how many trees are cut down every year? I was shocked when I looked into it. According to the Food and Agriculture Organization’s 2016 State of the Forests report, it revealed that 7 million hectares of forest are lost annually while agricultural land expands by 6 million. How many acres is that annually that’s lost? 172,973,76. All that land decimated.

What is the impact on the Earth??

Well animals lose their home. How would you feel if you were minding your business and all of a sudden you were evicted from your home with no where else to go and no say in the matter. You have grown up there, it is familiar and all of a sudden it is gone. That happens to so many, many animals everyday and they have no voice.

Trees soak up the carbon dioxide and pump out clean oxygen. Now, people chop down trees, and replace them with farm animals or mining facilities. Creating more carbon dioxide becoming a burden on the climate, because they got rid of the trees that were helping us.

Showing a tree some love – Tree hugging.

If you have never hugged a tree, you are missing out. Why is it beneficial? Hugging a tree basically makes you happy. It releases the hormones oxytocin, dopamine and serotonin.


Trees are more than amazing. We need to stop the destruction of them, otherwise we are going to have none left.

Here are some charities to check out and/or support if you are able:

Sources: The Understory,Forest Bathing, Definition of Forest bathing

To learn how you can get involved with my project, check out my Nature and Us page.

Italy 2018, Part 4

Part 4! This is one of my favourite posts I have done. Reason: I have always been fascinated by the history of Pompeii. I look at videos such as this one part of the Melbourne Winter Masterpieces exhibition in 2009 held at Melbourne Museum: A Day in Pompeii.

It always fascinates me how quickly it happened. Even though it started at 8AM, there was no way that anyone could have escaped the affects of the eruption.

This eruption of Vesuvius changed the landscape forever, and as the video goes on to say, it changed it so much that within a few years they couldn’t even work out where Pompeii was buried. All that history, and life, destroyed and buried by the power of nature.

DAY 9

Tuesday 19th

Laura was our tour guide once again and it took us an hour to reach the foot of Mount Vesuvius from the other side of the bay. Pompeii was so much better than I had anticipated! Being there in person was a completely different experience than looking at pictures.

There were more brothels than I thought there would have been. There was a street that was purely for prostitution. Our tour guide took us around said brothels and the beds were made out of stone. In the corridors leading to the rooms there were pornographic art on the ceiling. Me and my younger brother decided we didn’t want to see this so we kept our heads down.

We passed temples, various bakeries and bathing houses. We even saw famous human remains of people who died back in this tragic event.

Above is a picture diary of our day in Pompeii. I hope you enjoy!

Day 10

Wednesday 19th

On our last day of the holiday, we visited the Cinema Teatro Armida. We had the opportunity to enjoy the excellent performance of the famous dance – The Tarantella.

It was so uplifting, the dancing, singing and the use of the tambourines made you want to tap your foot and dance along with them on the stage.

If you get the opportunity to enjoy it, I would strongly recommend you go!

Here is the link to their facebook page: Cinema https://www.facebook.com/cinemateatroarmida/

Down below is a little sneak peek of the performance taken on my phone that I thought you might enjoy:

This is the last of this series! It has been fun to look back on the holiday with my family. Thank you to those who read through my first Holiday series. I hope you enjoyed it.

Norway 2019, Part 1

My family and I went on a beautiful cruise to Norway in May 2019 and we are due to return later on this year (that is if Covid doesn’t get involved!). I cannot wait because I love the place and the people!

I didn’t keep a journal like I did for our holiday in Italy but I still have the beautiful pictures and experiences to share with you!

We travelled from Newcastle and after travelling for roughly 36 hours and 548 miles, we made it into Norwegian territory. We first visited Bergen.

Bergen

I found this city so interesting. All these colourful buildings, the little cobbled and wooden flooring gave it a little-village vibe, and yet it being a major city. There were modern building mixed in with the old and that mix worked well here.

Not many actually like fish but you can’t help but be fascinated by the fish market right in the heart of the city. According the to VisitBergen website: “The picturesque Fish Market in Bergen is one of Norway’s most visited outdoors markets.” (The Fish Market in Bergen). No wonder it is the most visited! It has been providing sustainable food to locals since the 1200’s and is a great place to visit whether you are a curious tourist or a local searching for your evening meal.

Not exactly one of the main attractions but when we were having a wander around we passed a flower shop with exquisite flowers!

We went on an excursion that took us to: ØVRE-EIDE FARM. Their website isn’t in English, but if you scroll all the way to the bottom you have the option to translate it. You will find it showcases some beautiful photos of the scenic surroundings of the farm. They also have some very friendly sheep…

That’s it for this time, but if you would like to see more of our Scandinavian trip, give me a follow!

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Bodnant Garden

Watch the video log for our day and see the beautiful gardens in action!

So yesterday we visited a place called Bodnant Garden. It is a stunning piece of 80 acre land situated in Northern Wales UK. It contains so many species of plants from all over the globe, some collected more than a century ago on expeditions.

There are so many different gardens being nurtured here. From terraces, to buzzing meadows, woodland to rivers and bubbling brooks.

This beautiful estate was developed by 5 generations of 1 family and then it was gifted to the national trust. It is a very popular site with over 270,000 people visiting in 2019 alone!

History

The gardens founder was an inventor called Henry Pochin, he was a chemist who made his fortune by inventing a process for clarifying rosin used in soap. Pochin bought the Bodnant estate in 1874 and employed Edward Milner, apprentice to Joseph Paxton, to redesign the land around the existing Georgian mansion house, then just lawns and pastures. It was around this time that the famous Laburnum arch was planted.

The Laburnum Arch

The Poem

The Poem is located in the area of the shrubbery borders. It is the family’s mausoleum. It was built by Henry Pochin as a memorial to his children, 4 of whom died in infancy.

The Plants

18th and early 19th century explorers brought plants from all over the globe and in that mix contained specimens of Rhododendron forrestii and Magnolia.

I highly recommend visiting as it has stunning grounds! It makes for a lovely day out, suitable for all the family. You can even bring your pooch.

Here are links to find out more:

Nature and Us

On this blog, I like to combine lots of subjects. But for the month of July, I will only be talking about one. That will be the Earth.

Our Earth is damaged. For hundreds of years, more so recently, humans have battered nature to the point that many animals and species of plants have become extinct. We are ruining the Earth.

To try and bring more awareness, for the entire month of July, I will be talking about why I love our planet, and ways that different people are helping.

What I would like from you?

I want you to join in. You can tweet on Twitter or post on Instagram, using the hashtag #natureandus. I want you to talk about why you love this planet and/or how you are helping lessen the damage mankind is doing.

It can be anything. A poem, video, a story about a day out you had in nature as a kid or an adult. It can be about your favorite animals or your favourite plants. It is in your control!

It can be anonymous or credited! You will get an entire post dedicated to you! And if you want me to, your social media links can be added.

To help me find your suggestion, send it directly to me. To find my social media’s, go to my about page.

You can, of course, comment on this post or even go to the Nature and Us page. Email me at talithatullochsstravels@gmail.com, or go to the contact me page.

I look forward to hearing from you!

💛💛

Berry Smoothie Madness

I hate breakfast. For years I have said to my friends over and over: “Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. I cannot believe you missed it!”. What a hypocrite I was!

I would always skip breakfast because I wanted that extra 15 minutes in bed, and no matter how justified I felt those 15 minutes were, my body was taking a hit. I would end up like a zombie, walking around yawning while my body was craving those nutrients to kick-start my day.

That was…until I found smoothies.

I’m no health expert. I’m really not. However, after drinking these smoothies over the course of April & May, I have really felt a difference in myself. I feel healthier because I know I am getting those vitamins in a morning. Just taking those 5-10 minutes before I go to bed to help my future self has really benefitted my mental health too.

I have also replaced caffeine. So instead of reaching for my morning coffee, which can cause gut issues, drinking smoothies makes me feel better! You do have to be careful how many sugary smoothies you have though. So do not be adding honey into the mix, but rather banana’s are the way to go!

I would like to quote the NHS on what they say, it is quite enlightening:

A 150ml glass of unsweetened fruit juice, vegetable juice or smoothie can count as a maximum of 1 portion of your recommended 5 daily portions of fruit and vegetables. In other words, limit the amount of fruit juice, vegetable juice or smoothie you have to no more than a combined total of 150ml a day (1 small glass).

NHS, Water, Drinks and your Health

So basically, just be balanced! I like to swap around what type of smoothies I drink, (such as the green smoothies I wrote about a little while ago) so they’re not constantly Berry smoothies which are my favourite. Here is what I like to put in my…

Very Berry Smoothie!

For this, you will need:

  • 1 Banana
  • 1 handful of Blueberries
  • 4 small strawberries or 2 big strawberries
  • Handful of raspberries
  • 1 healthy glug of Oat milk or other plant based milk.
  • 1 teaspoon of your chosen protein powder.
  • (Optional: I use a splash of beetroot juice if I have it in as it is a good source of potassium and it helps to lower blood pressure.)

Method:

Chop all of the fruit such as strawberries and the bananas. Put all of the ingredients in the blender and completely blend until smooth. If needs be, you can pour some more liquid into the mixture.

(Featured image by: https://images.app.goo.gl/hHmFEhampRpy8LSs7)

Chocolate Cookies

These cookies are very moreish and you can never just stop at one. Sadly they are not vegan but they are vegetarian friendly. This recipe can make quite a few cookies depending on how big your cookie cutter is. I used the rim of a glass for mine as I couldn’t find my cutters and it did the job!

They do not take very long to make and are simple enough that they are quick and can fill your chocolate craving! I hope you enjoy making them. Let me know how your baking goes!

Ingredients:

  • 220g Plain flour
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • pinch of salt
  • 145g caster sugar
  • 120g salted butter
  • 1tsp vanilla, I used Madagascan vanilla for mine.
  • 1 free-range egg
  • 40g cocoa powder

Method:

Add the baking powder to the flour and the salt. Whisk it together and put this aside for a moment. Cream the butter and sugar together with either a machine whisk or a hand held whisk for 30 seconds. Pour in your vanilla and the egg, whisk.

Gently put your cocoa powder in without trying to get it everywhere and mix it all together.

Add half of the dry mix you made earlier and fold it into the wet mix. Once it has fully mixed, add in the other half.

Fold your mix into a ball, cover in clingfilm and chill in the fridge for no more than 15 mins. After that, lightly flour your surface, flatten and cut with whatever cookie cutter you desire! Be creative, don’t be boring like me and go for round *winky face*

Place on a baking sheet and cook for 15 minutes at 175C.