American Vs British English: Shopping Words!

Happy Sunday, guys! I spent my morning window shopping on Oxford Street (somehow managed to resist Topshop’s siren call), which inspired this video. London is a shopaholic’s heaven, from Bond Street, to markets, to vintage stores in Shoreditch, and there are a few key vocab words to know if you’re American. While both countries speak English, there are some key vocab differences when it comes to clothing and shopping. Check it out, so you can fill your bags and add to your London wardrobe with ease.

Band tee:

Bum Bag:
Tank top/Vest:
Mini backpack:
Nike Trainers:
Ballet flats:

Shopping in London: American vs British English Words

My 2018 London Bucket List

My 2018 London Bucket List

Instead of setting New Year’s resolutions for 2018, I thought I’d do something a bit more active (re: I didn’t want to get introspective and psychoanalyze myself more than I already do), and instead craft a 2018 London Bucket List.

When I originally moved to London as a student (more on that here), I rarely had classes scheduled all day, so was fortunate enough to have plenty of free time to fill. This meant lots of exploring the city, embracing my inner tourist, and taking in a smorgasbord of major landmarks – cultural, historical, or instagram famous.

Since I’ve started working full-time, however, I obviously am only free on weekends to roam this beautiful city and need to make more of an effort to still adventure outside my day-to-day bubble. I figured this bucket list might hold me accountable (so I don’t disappoint my internet friends!), and even give you ideas for things to do when you next visit London.

Have a lazy Sunday roast

For someone pretty obsessed with my next meal, I’ve surprisingly not had one of the most quintessentially British meals of all – the Sunday roast. With the winter days so damp, cold and dreadful, now is the perfect time to seek refuge in a pub for a long supper swimming in gravy.

Wander the Tate Modern

I loved the Tate Britain when I finally visited in December, so visiting its sister is a must. There’s a Picasso exhibition on in the spring, so may be the perfect excuse.

Ride through Hyde Park on a Santander cycle

A few weekends ago I disastrously attempted to cycle to and then around Richmond Park with my housemates (aka avoided several near misses with oncoming traffic). I think a breezy afternoon bike ride on a free Santander cycle around scenic Hyde Park may be more my speed.

Dive into Hampstead Heath

Come summer time, I am full on cannon-balling into this swimming pond.

Sink pints at the Churchill Arms

I’m determined to get my drink on at one of London’s most beautiful pubs. I’ve walked by and gawked plenty of times, but have yet to hole up inside with a choice IPA.

Picnic on Primrose Hill

Always down to take in some of the best views of London with a cute packed lunch as accompaniment.

Spend a summer night at The Globe

When I visited London back in 2014 we saw Titus Andronicus at The Globe (people fainted from the gore! hardcore!), but I haven’t been back since moving here. I am a theater nerd, so slipping back into Shakespeare’s world while watching top dramatic talent would be ideal.

Consume too much curry in Whitechapel

Again, with the food. I’ve tried legendary curryhouse Tayyab’s, but am keen to venture to other outposts like Needo. London does curry so right.

Boogie at a London music festival

Last summer I donned some glitter face paint and experienced my first UK music festival at Love Box. Very fun, thanks mainly to a Frank Ocean set I’ll never forget, but not quite Coachella levels of mindblowing. I’m headed to a fest in Croatia this summer, but would like to branch out here on English soil.

Tour Buckingham Palace

Ok, who else is obsessed with The Crown? The show has converted me into biggest royal family devotee, so I’m keen to tour Her Majesty’s abode ASAP.

Find floral heaven at Kew Gardens

Just outside the city, Kew’s floral oasis is supposed to be stunning. Perhaps I’ll visit around Christmas when it’s all aglow with fairy lights.

Experience the Wizarding World of Harry Potter

Confession: I wrote myself a Howgwarts acceptance letter in 5th grade on parchment paper that I made myself. The muggle struggle continues, so I finally need to make the trek to the studio tour here and fully nerd out, Hermione-style (yes, I cried when they cast Emma Watson instead of me in the role).

Taste my way through Borough Market

Some of my favourite London restaurants are in Borough Market in Southwark (check out El Pastor or Padella if you’re in the area), but I’ve yet to really taste the market itself. With countless vendors offering the finger-licking goods, the market is at the top of my foodie to-do list.

See a ballet at the Royal Opera House

Growing up consumed by dance and even once in a ballet company, I’ll always have a wistful soft-spot for the art form. I definitely need to book a show at the world-famous theater in Covent Garden.

Climb to the top of St. Paul’s

Another London icon that I surprisingly haven’t experienced yet. You can hike up the stairs to the top of the cathedral, and I think 2018 is the perfect year for me to go and pay my respects to this icon.

Cheers the city from the roof of Madison

Once summer hits London, the sorely missed sun and long hours of daylight mean Londoners are constantly outside, preferably with rose in hand. Once temps have risen and the clouds have parted, you’ll be able to find me at one of the many chic rooftop bars, preferably Madison, taking in the world’s best (IMHO) skyline.

Escape London for a day in the country

I could spend years discovering London, but I can’t forget about the rest of England! So many cities are within a short train journey from the city, so I need to get better about venturing outside the Big Smoke. Cornwall, the Cotswolds, Cambridge, Cumbria and many more are on my list.

Thank you for stopping by – do you have any favourite or iconic London spots/things to do I should make a point to do in 2018?

London Essentials:

London Brunch: Cafe Miami

A few weekends ago, I schlepped way out to Clapton (re: east London) in search of a colorful antidote for the London greys. My friends Kyle, Sasha and I sought refuge in art-deco brunch haven, Cafe Miami. Cue the Will Smith, baby.

London Brunch Spot - Cafe Miami

Cafe Miami - cute brunch spot in East London

Covered in pastels and kitted out in instagram-ready neon signs, Cafe Miami adds a much needed pop of panache to Clapton’s winter gloom. We grabbed a table (luckily no wait midday on a Sunday), and proceeded to wait entirely too long to order.

Several members of staff hung out for ages behind the counter seemingly avoiding eye contact with guests, as we and other tables grew more frustrated at the lack of service and attention. The south Florida pastels could not quell our frustration. After finally flagging down a member of staff, we managed to convince them to take our order. Very disappointing service experience overall.

Luckily, once we received our food, the spread, like a ray of  South Beach sunshine, made me (almost) forget the lackluster service.

Brunch at Cafe Miami in East London

Sasha had the basic betch approved avocado and halloumi toast.

Avocado Toast at Cafe Miami in London

She gave her, not see easy to receive, seal of approval.

Brunch at Cafe Miami in London

While I took no prisoners, avocado or otherwise, and went for the waffle burger. Topped with chorizo, egg, avocado and hot sauce, the dish was a beautiful, dripping in yolk porn, monstrosity. Fact: Mexican food makes the best breakfast (really any meal tbh).

The massive waffle burger at Cafe Miami in London

Cafe Miami is worth a visit if you’re in the area and not in a rush. While the food, especially my waffle masterpiece, definitely entered the London brunch hall of fame, the service really downgraded the entire experience. I wouldn’t travel out of your way for a Miami pilgrimage.


Studying in the UK vs the US – What’s Different?

While I now work full-time here in London, I originally moved here as a student to complete my Master’s in Media and Communication at the London School of Economics. I explain my decision more in this post, and while I was terrified AF, it ended up being one of the best decisions of my life.

Arriving in London, I thought I was fairly well-prepared and had done as much research as possible, but I ended up reasonably clueless when it came to studying in the UK. For the most part, schooling isn’t wildly different than the US – you attend class, study and read outside, then write papers and take exams. However, there were a few key differences I wanted to cover in a video that would have been helpful to know before I moved my entire life across an ocean to a foreign country. So check it out, and let me know if you have any questions!

Gingham Top:

I’m hoping to do another post on why you absolutely should get a degree abroad ( EXPAT LYYYFFEE FOREVER) and more of the logistics on how I moved to the UK, but in the meantime I hope this is helpful if you’re planning to study in this lovely country.

Studying in the UK vs the US - What's Different?

Vlogmas Week 2 – London Christmas Brunch in Narnia

Call me Mr. Tumnus, because I just crawled through the wardrobe, stole the treacle tart, and had the most fabulous London brunch basically in Narnia.

Lucky for you, I vlogged the whole thing for Vlogmas! Join my friend Riley and me as we enjoy London’s first snow, brunch to our heart’s content at Dalloway Terrace and explore the beautifully decorated hotels of Mayfair, all while somehow managing to avoid wiping out face first on the ice.

Pink Jumper // Pink Beanie

Dalloway Terrace in London is absolutely stunning and perfect for a Christmas brunchIf you’re in London during winter, I highly recommend the seasonal restaurant, Dalloway Terrace at the Bloomsbury Hotel. It certainly lives up to the hype and its poetic name. My eggs benedict was delicious, service was on point, and the winter wonderland decor was magical. London being dusted in snow may have a helped a little too. Book ASAP, as it fills up fast (it’s an intimate space), but I assure you it’s worth an early wake-up call.

The coziest winter brunch spot at Dalloway Terrace in London

So many (croissant-filled) belly laughs today with Riley, that I’ve somehow managed to avoid the Sunday scaries and am utterly content. BIG life update in the vlog as well, plus some of London’s most stunning Christmas trees. Hope your Sunday was just as enjoyable and festive. Only 15 more sleeps until Christmas!

Join me for Christmas Brunch at Dalloway Terrace in London - it's like stepping into Narnia!