Go Ape  🐒🐒

Go Ape  🐒🐒

We conquered the tree top adventure!!!

This challenge right here had a sort of team-building- day-trip-conquering-fears type vibe.

🐒👫👫👫🐒

 

It was my turn to organise the couples trip and in true #25For25 fashion I decided to do something fun and exciting.

After everything was booked, we eagerly awaited the weekend (even though some of us needed a bit more convincing than others lol)

A N T H O N Y

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The journey there was a funny one. I hate being late but I was probably the reason why we were probably gonna miss our slot (damn my urge to always carry snacks and emergency sugar lol).

 

 

 

When we arrived we luckily caught up with our group and listened to the safety briefing.

 

 

 

I can’t lie, as much as it was my idea…when it came to the first jump I was shook. You’ll see a couple of my update as we walk through the sites.

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Several minutes after conquering the first jump, I had to make the decision whether to go on either:

1) the extreme path

or

2) the less extreme path

Before I decided, I let the boys go across first.

(See below)

 

 

Do you see the struggle!? I decided to take the easier route lol.

Hilarious.

 

The further you get on the course the more confident you feel. You eventually forget you were even fearful at the start.

 

 

 

By the time you reach site 3 you’re harnessing yourself without even thinking twice.

You’ll even find yourself encouraging strangers and reminding them to

always stay attached”

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There was one jump in particular that none of the girls attempted.

 

 

 

 

I didn’t quite fancy launching myself of a twig into a giant spiders web.


 

*DANCE BREAK*

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…Always time for a Cunningham dance battle

 

 

 


The weather was truly in our favour. It happened to be the hottest day of the year

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Cue Dwayne.

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As you can see, some of the group were more cocky confident than others.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Can you believe it, no one in our group fell.

I repeat

NO

ONE

FELL!

(I’m not gonna lie, I had my bets on Bridget or Anthony being the ones to drop, sorry guys)

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 The thought of falling had all of us a bit anxious at the start. Our guide simply told us

“If you fall, you’ll just be hanging there.”

#AintNobodyGotTimeForThat!

 

*DANCE BREAK*

 

It’s safe to say I’ve overcome my fear of heights!


 

The activity that gave us the most laughs has to be the zip wire. And the award for the funniest landing definitely goes to Paul!

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One of the rules when landing is to keep your legs together then start kicking your legs/run in the air….

Paul over here decided it was time for gymnastics!

At every opportunity possible, he would open his legs wide in split position, ensuring total hilarity when he finally landed… see for yourself!

 

FUNNY VID ALERT!!!

 

 

 

😂😂😂

 

Me on the other hand, I was a bit shaky at the start.

Shak & Bri had a couple of dodgy landings too.

 

 

 

 

 

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Eventually I perfected my landing; and in true ‘Shivy’ fashion used a catchphrase.

Today it was….

LOOK AT THE STRENGTH”

 

 


We made it to site 5!

 

 

And boy, the final jump was massive.

At this point you give yourself and the group a pep talk…

Something along the lines of:

“Ok guys, this is it. No turning back, you’ve made it this far. We have been on the course for 3+ hours. Let’s do this…”

 

 

 

Because I was last, there’s no footage of me doing the final jump, but I can assure you it was epic.

3 HOURS LATER AND THAT WAS IT!!!


Headcount:

Paul, Shak, Ant, Bri, Dwayne and Shiv ✔️

We all made it.

 

 

 

We then received our certificates and we were off on our way.

Completing Go Ape was definitely a huge achievement for me, considering I haven’t been the greatest fan of heights over the last few years.

I would say the real challenge lies with conquering the first jump…then conquering the aches and pains your body feels over the next 2-3 days!

If you’re feeling brave enough, give Go Ape a try!

🐒🌳


Ok, ok, let’s watch Paul’s famous landing one more time

 

I tried Oysters!

I tried Oysters!

Today Stephanie and I decided to take the plunge and try oysters!!

Not one, but six 🤢

It was only right that we took another trip to my favourite seafood joint Crab Tavern in Liverpool Street.

The first time I came here was for my 24th birthday and the service was exceptional, the food was A1 and it left a great impression in my mind! In terms of great seafood, seasoned well and gorgeously presented Crab Tavern was the spot.

I eagerly waited for another opportunity to come back and when it came to sampling oysters for the first time we decided this was the place to go.

When we arrived we waited at the door for what felt like almost 5 minutes, feeling ignored by the staff. Busy or not my excitement for being back there was slightly dwindling.

Strike two occurred when it came to ordering food.

The first waitress had the audacity to make something up about the menu 😳 and when I politely questioned her she said ‘umm be right back’ and got her manager. The manager came and said something completely different 😒

Now I don’t like to get into too much discussion when it comes to food, but as a customer I’ll always ask questions and expect an honest answer. Not conflicting information 👌🏾

Back to the oysters…

Steph and I did some google searching “how to eat oysters” “people trying oysters” “what even are oysters” those kind of videos


 

I think they scared us more than anything.

 

When the oysters came out we decided to take it in turns. The lady presented us with 6 oysters in a bed of ice with lemon and Tabasco sauce.

 

LETS GO…

Slight hesitation at first…

 

Oyster number 1: Taken plain with garnish

 

Verdict: Nasty, do I really want to do this again?

 

 

Oyster number 2: Taken with lemon alone

Verdict: *gags* ok…ok…it tastes better with lemon

 

 

Oyster number 3: Taken with lemon and hot sauce

Verdict: The best. Why didn’t I try this one first?

 

Side Note: Did you hear Steph… she says:

 “It tastes like I’ve been swimming in Southend bruv”

 


 

It’s only right that I upload Steph’s attempt’s. Check out her animated facial expressions 😂

Conclusion:

Oysters are weird, but you just have to garnish it well 😂


REAL FOOD TIME…

We waited almost 45 minutes for our dish to come out; we weren’t happy at all. We spent this time nibbling on chocolate pebbles from Ghana to settle our weary stomachs.

But yeah, now that I’ve mastered how to eat an oyster I can confidently say I have no desire to try them again.

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When I got home I had to drink two fresh ginger tea’s. Sadly, I don’t think raw food sits right with me.

 

Overall, I had a lot of people asking how the experience was and I think my face says it all, try them for yourself gang!

Inflatable 5K Santa Run

Inflatable 5K Santa Run

Santa baby…

Meet young Shivy and old St Nick.

We’ve always had a bit of a love hate relationship. You know, getting me the wrong princess dress, or bringing me the baby born doll in the wrong shade…

Alas, we decided to settle our differences almost 20 years later and do something for the both of us…

The Inflatable 5K Run!

inflatable 5k

Before I go on to say how much fun I had and complain about the lactic acid build up, I will say this… I missed the first race 😳

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Originally I had booked to run the Inflatable 5K in August in London with the gang…sadly we were stuck in traffic for 4 hours and missed our race!! I was fuming but the company graciously let me re-book and compete in another location.

…this location being Ipswich lol.

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Saturday 2nd December came around and it was THE busiest day in history. I was invited to not one but  T H R E E  baby showers, had the 5K Run in Ipswich and had a podcast interview in the evening. I wondered how I was going to complete everything but took one step at a time.

 

The morning arrived, early starts are the worst…

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We got on the road on this rainy morning wrapped up with our gym clothes and thermals.

I was really craving McDonald’s. It seems like a bit of an oxymoron, you know running a marathon and eating McDonald’s for breakfast, but the cravings were real lol!

 

We registered and then it was time for a quick photo shoot then a warm up!

 

WARM UP TIME:

We had our own little personal trainer lead us in a warm up before the run. It was so freezing outside so any movement was helpful.

 

RACE TIME!

Well, technically it wasn’t a race, but when you’re dealing with Dwayne and I, you can’t help but be a little competitive lol!

 

INFLATABLES.

The Inflatable Run is just for fun, it wasn’t a race. The challenge is completing a 5K run from start to finish whilst climbing and conquering various obstacles and inflatables.

 

QUICK BREAK

Half way through they provided water and a nice little energy bar. This went down a treat and we were on the go again!

 

LOOK AT ALL THESE SANTAS…

It was only right that you come in costume. A lot of people purchased the Santa costumes to run in…Although as we ran around the course, we saw so many costumes ripped and thrown on the floor… I guess Old St Nick isn’t the ideal running wear lol

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f a t i g u e

I think I mentioned already, but I really don’t like running long distances! Dwayne and I are both sprinters… give us ye old 100m, 200m or 4x100m and we are flourishing. Anything longer, you’re gonna see a couple sad faces lol

 

LEAP OF   F  A  I   T   H

The final hurdle! We had to wait almost 10 minutes but once we were at the front we couldn’t wait to take the plunge. I saw so many people hesitate and turn back. But as I got to the top I remembered the other challenges that I had completed that involved conquering great heights.

 

3, 2, 1 GO!

 

We carried on and approached the finish line! Once we crossed we were awarded with medals and some yummy treats (including some chocolate milk that my lactose intolerant self isn’t really allowed lol)

 

But we did it!! And it was so much fun.

I’m glad I completed a 5K, this was the first and NOT my last 5K…10K next year maybe?

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I managed to get back to London in time to attend 1 of the 3 baby showers. After that, Shae and I ventured to the podcast interview in West London with @tagmeinpodcast. I’ll send the link when its up and ready!

 

BABY LISHThe mother to be and I

 

Here’s a review video of the day!

 

I hope you’ve enjoyed this Christmas special!

Happy holidays to you all, from the champ and I.

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Sky Gardens 🌺

Sky Gardens 🌺


Intense…right?

Folks your girl is a model now!!! No more selfies with my rose gold iPhone 6s it’s all about the megapixels baby!!!

Ok back to the blog.

Thanks to Dwayne, I finally got the chance to go to Sky Gardens (in May) 😍

The first time we tried to go, we hadn’t booked tickets and were told to come back at 9pm when they accept walk ins #myth.

So what better way to celebrate the final Bank Holiday in May…then at the picturesque Sky Gardens.

…ok so there’s a lot more to the day than pretty flowers and ooo la la views.


We started the day off with a workout. I got a day pass at Nuffield Health gym and got my flex on with muscle man himself lol.

After that I made my way home, got ready and awaited my “surprise trip“.

First stop…HYDE PARK.

Man, there were thousands of people around. Seeing all these teenagers in booty shorts, crop tops and jelly sandals is the stuff of nightmares…

Honestly my spirit was grieved, I kept my eye to the sky and prayed that there would be an intervention for when I have kids because this can’t run 😭

Anyway…I walked around Hyde park until we got to the lake…that’s right y’all I was about to dive in

Here’s something I’ve never done before, rowed a boat in Hyde Park. Ok let me not lie, I sat whilst my Dwayne rowed…and rowed and rowed.

 

It was great fun watching him chauffeur me across the lake, as we dangerously avoided colliding with neighbouring boats and dodged deadly seagulls

 

(alright drama queen)

 

After our adventure on the lake we made our way to Sky Gardens. When we arrived we showed our tickets and made our way up…way up to the 35th floor. Oh, I forgot to mention that I’m not the biggest fan of heights 🤷🏾‍♀️)

I’m not gonna lie, my first thoughts were ‘oh, is this it? Aww nice’ 😂

That’s so bad, I probably should of done my research.

 

I genuinely thought Sky Garden was some glass house botanical garden type venue, home to exotic plants and trees that you could only find in the Amazon rainforest #JokesOnYouShiv

 

Ironically, on our commute to Sky Gardens I took this photo saying “I wanna go here” and that’s what I thought Sky Gardens looked like lol!

Now, I was fairly content with my surroundings. The place is real fancy so I’m glad I didn’t turn up wearing my Nike huaraches.

The view of the city was amazing. A Londoner can appreciate her city every once in a while.

Can we just acknowledge how great a photographer my Dwayne is. He takes the most amazing photos that pick up every intricate detail.

And of course, he captures my good side. I’ve never met someone so keen on taking my photo. Mr Rapley you make me feel like a celebrity ☺️

Here comes the photo shoot!

We walked around for a bit, took some more candid photos for image gang and then made our way home!

Honestly, if you get the chance, go to Sky Gardens, enjoy the view, feel fancy for an hour and sip a cute cocktail too 🥂

Until the next post, toodles!

✌🏾

Cocktail Making Class 🍹

Cocktail Making Class 🍹

Fun Fact…

Once upon a time, I wanted to be a bartender…The end.

Honestly that’s as far as it goes. I remember when all my girls turned 18…going to TGI’s for ribs and cocktails was “our thing”.

Seeing all the tricks and watching the infusions of different drinks was enough to make a young girl want to pursue it

…unfortunately I never did lol

So I found a really decent deal on WOWCHER for a cocktail making class at Dice Bar 🎲 in Croydon.

And who was the perfect person to go with…Miss Hanna Banna – the original turn up twin.

The day arrived, Hanna and I met up in Stratford but not even I anticipated the 2 hour drive.

You see we have absolutely everything we need in East, so it’s very rare that you would catch us venturing down South.

Anyway, I digress…The rain was AWFUL which meant the drive was a bit treacherous, not to mention we were travelling during rush hour.

Our designated time was 5pm but we were probably going to be about 45 minutes late.

(how many challenges are you going to be late to Shiv!?)

We arrived at the bar, did a little tour and were introduced to another couple who would be taking the class with us.

Our bartender told us to choose two drinks we would like to make and then we would get started.

Whilst looking through the menu and the ingredients, I could tell they would be pretty strong drinks lol. Hanna avoided these as she was the sensible designated drive 😉

The two drinks I chose were a Candy Crusher and Heisenberg

And Hanna chose a Bahama Mama and Khaleesi’s dragon.

So the bartender talked us through the whole process. We basically had free reign on how our drinks would turn out.

I thought they would make it first then we take our turn, but no.

 

Mannn…I wish there was a huge disclaimer about getting cold hands! If you know me then you’re aware that I hate being cold, I’m always cold and did i mention….

I HATE THE COLD!

I reckon Hanna agrees too, all the ice and shaking…they should really give you gloves 😂

 

Ok so I made a few mistakes but it made great entertainment…

But by the second drink, you become a “pro”

As much as it was a fun experience, I was expecting to see some tricks and even learn some for myself.

 

But the day literally involved a bartender talking us through how to make two cocktails.

img_2277No, I’m not complaining, but if I wanted a tutorial on how to mix drinks I reckon I could look on Youtube lol.

Nevertheless, I had a fun time with Hanna!

 

 

Funny story:

I needed a toilet break so I made my way to the ladies room and when I walked in, an Uncle was stood there by the hand dryer!

He said ‘AH AH. Is this di ladies??’ I said yeah… so he ran out LOL.

And that was it for the cocktail making class!

Dice Bar has a great vibe but it’s highly unlikely that we’ll ravel there again anytime soon!

When we finished, we wanted to find a decent Caribbean restaurant.

(because if you voyage to South you HAVE to eat YARD food).

We found somewhere, we heard great recommendations…but Hanna and I just couldn’t justify spending £11 for oxtail, rice and peas 😂😑

So we settled for KFC.

this is exactly how I felt.

We both agreed that KFC is better in South London!

That’s about it! I don’t remember how to make ANY of the drinks lol. Regardless, we had fun and were featured on the “Croydon story” on instagram!

I can start signing autographs now right?

Click the link below to see a summary video of our cocktail making class 😜🍹

https://flipagram.com/f/1GLq3F0jOVq

Up at the O2!

Up at the O2!

Hello Birthday Month!

There’s been such a build up to this particular Birthday that I found myself super anxious as my 25th slowly approached…

I mean come on there’s been so much hype about turning 25 that I can’t help but anticipate a great day or not …don’t be such a pessimist Shiv.

So a few weeks ago Dwayne told me to keep Sunday 1st October free because it will be my early birthday present.

After a busy day at work we rushed home, I got dressed and we were on our way.

In true Dwayne fashion he didn’t give anything away, nor did he succumb to the pressure or all my questions 😂

I’ve always said that I’m the most difficult person to surprise because I just figure things out. But to make things fair I purposely didn’t ask too many questions.

Instead I just scream internally and fidget in my seat because I’m nervous

WHAT ARE WE DOING!?

Whilst on the central line Dwayne lost focus and said “whoops we were meant to get off two stops before…”

PAY ATTENTION DWAYNE!

Anyway, we eventually got to Canary Wharf and we walked around till we came to this restaurant called Rum & Sugar.

We walked in and ordered or food. Those who know me KNOW that I can’t handle spicy food. But I decided to brave it and order jerk chicken.

BIG MISTAKE.

It was a struggle and Dwayne had to finish my food lol!

He knows me so well lol.

We wined, dined and left. In true Shivy fashion I thought to myself…there’s no way Mr Rapley has brought me all the way to Canary Wharf just to eat then let us go home!?

I thanked him and asked what do you wanna do now? Shall we go somewhere?

To which he replied “no let’s just go home

We jumped onto the jubilee line and I lay my head down to sleep (ofcourse)

BUT THEN…Dwayne quickly got up and I was super confused. He got off the train and I followed after. He had the cheekiest smirk on his face and I just couldn’t figure out where we were going lol.

We tapped out at North Greenwich (The O2) and I still had no clue why! I looked around for signs to see if there was a performance, comedy show or a concert happening… nothing.

Dwayne silently walked ahead with that cheeky grin and as we turned a corner he pointed up and said “that’s pretty high up isn’t it”…

My heart immediately sank…excitement and fear at the same time.

We were about to CLIMB THE O2!

Now, completing Up At The O2 has been one of my pending challenges but I just hadn’t got around to doing it so I crossed it off my list.

But Mr Rapley had gone out of his way to trick me (again) as part of my birthday celebrations lol.

We entered, signed the waiver and watched the safety video.

Then it was time to get suited up. We had an option of using a gilet or a jump suit…ofcourse we went for the more stylish jumpsuit lol

We had a quick briefing then it was time to climb.

For safety reasons you can’t take your phone out to snap as you’re climbing – now that’s one safety procedure I’ll listen to lol!

As you ascend, it’s so flipping steep. You’re basically climbing up at a 30 degree angle and our guide then decides to give us a tour of London from the sky.

He showed us all these landmarks, but I just wanted to keep going up! It was cold and windy and I don’t like clouds (luckily it didn’t rain).

We carried on climbing and when we reached the top we stayed for about 20 minutes to take pictures and admire the view.

I was so glad that the clouds had disappeared but I didn’t realise how quickly it got dark.

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Ok, time for the descent. The guide asked if I would like to lead on the way down, instead of the other couple, to which I responded, “Absolutely…not“.

He was cracking up, personally I love it when people mistake my seriousness for humour. There was no way I was going down first lol.

We stopped…again! Our guide pointed out that every time the Thames tide (fantastic use of alliteration Shivy) goes back that this one lonely seal appears and sits on the bank.

(Didn’t get a pic, but it I can assure you it was in fact a lone seal chilling by the Thames)

No more stops please!

The guide said on the descent you can even climb backwards because it’s easier on the joints. I tried it for a milli second and didn’t really fancy the idea of abseiling down the O2 at night!

The only downfall of climbing down forwards is that your toes and knees hurt but what can you do!?

Andddd we made it!

We went inside and got our stuff back then walked through to the gift shop. Oh Lord, as for this gift shop…we can assure you that the no gifts were bought.

Before the climb the happiest lady in the world (not) took our photo with a semi professional camera. They showed us these extravagant photos at the end, 2/3 were nice and the last was completely out of focus.

It was all fair and well showing us the pics but I wanted to know the cost. I cheekily said “do we get a discount if we are on O2?

Unfortunately no, but the photo is £15 (WHAT!?) and then the rest are £5 after.”

TWENTY FIVE POUNDS for three small photos… hell to the no.

As expected, it was extortionately priced and we couldn’t justify buying (although I was SO tempted to).

Dwayne and I are learning to be good stewards with our money so it was a great decision.

We walked out with our heads held high and our pockets still full. Oh but ofcourse, one more photo shoot!

When we got home I was beat! But overall I was proud of myself, and ofcourse truly grateful for the birthday surprise.

I don’t want to be one of those girls who is constantly boring everyone with comments about their boyfriend…but I might just be that girl!

I’ll keep on singing Dwayne’s praises because he always goes above and beyond for me ❤️

Last night I went to sleep content and ticked this off the list!

What? There’s a farm in Hackney!?

What? There’s a farm in Hackney!?

Not sure how I missed this!? But there’s a cute little farm in Hackney called “Hackney City Farm

Before I go on, allow me to introduce you to my special friend, Dwayne.

This dapper young man will be featured in a couple of my challenges that I need to write up…but I thought now would be a good time to show the world of WordPress the guy who’s been keeping me occupied for the past couple months.

So every weekend Dwayne, has made the effort to take me somewhere I haven’t been before. Of course this is super helpful when you’re trying to do 25 new things #25For25.

On this day in particular, he told me to dress casually and meet him in Mile End. I’m super inquisitive and probably the most difficult person to surprise…so to make life easier I didn’t ask ANY questions.

After a little walk and a bus journey we arrived, and I saw the sign “Hackney City Farm”

Now for some, they may be thinking “is this it!?”…But when you’re Shiv, the animal lover and miss ‘easily pleased’ you’ll be super excited.

Awwww” I think my reaction was.

My first initial thoughts were “how much is it? Can we go through here? Are you sure this is for us lol. Can you imagine.

The farm is free to enter and you walk around at your own pace.

The farm gives the local community the opportunity to experience farming right in the heart of the city.

“Hackney City Farm provide trips, volunteering sessions and opportunities to plant vegetables. They allow you to learn new skills to live a healthier, happier life with a lower environmental impact.”

I’ve always had a slight obsession with chickens. I don’t know why they’re just the best. We came across this cute baby Cockerel who hasn’t quite mastered his crow. 🐔

I’m a meat eater… sorry to hurt anyone’s feelings (not), but all I could think about was the potential dishes all these gorgeous animals could be.

…Curry goat, fried chicken, jerk pork 💭


Something unusual happened whilst at the farm. I noticed quite a few ducks chasing this one particular duck. I thought they were merely playing a harmless game of chase me. When in fact, I believe I was witnessing something that should of happened behind closed doors 🔞

Hackney Farm, the place where ducks just procreate; I have no words.

I always seem to catch the most jokes when I’m around animals, hence the silly captions and voice overs.

‘When the squad links up and all you want to do is sleep…’

#TeamNatural

‘Pecky with the good hair’

Enough of the puns, photo shoot time!

(it’s always difficult to get pictures of a photographer – they don’t even want to be on the other end of a camera 🤔)

After we were finished at the farm, we spontaneously made our way to a museum nearby.

What

Doesn’t

Hackney

Have!?


Overall, the farm is nice if you don’t want to travel too far (especially if you have young kids). When you end the adventure, you can even take yourself to the toy museum 10 minutes away.

That’s about it!

Oh, if you’re eagerly awaiting more blog posts featuring Dwayne, they’re coming! ☺️


http://hackneycityfarm.co.uk/events