A Sunny Adventure To Krýsuvík, Iceland

Before we getting into today’s post (which is full of beautiful pictures so stick around!) I just wanted to say thank you all for your lovely comments on yesterday’s post! Your comments yesterday made me feel like I am definitely on the right track with how I view my blog and I am so happy to have you all as readers!

Okay, moving on. As I mentioned yesterday, over the weekend H and I had a beautiful outdoor adventure. Lets talk more about that shall we.

When we woke up to sun shinning through our windows on Saturday morning we knew a day outside was on the agenda. I think we hit the jackpot with our adventure and spent our afternoon in complete awe of our surroundings. I mean, just check out this view of my Viking and the Icelandic landscape.

Iceland Winter

It was unreal!

Our mission for the day was to find the geothermal area Krýsuvík located outside of Reykjavik. As soon as we arrived to the road back to Krýsuvík I knew we were in for a treat. The views of mountains covered in snow and the sun making everything sparkle was so beautiful. It almost, almost, made up for the fact that there is still snow outside.

Krýsuvík, IcelandKrýsuvík, IcelandKrýsuvík, Iceland

For the next twenty minutes as we drove back on winding mountain roads with nothing but snow covered mountains surrounding us it was like being transported to another world! And at the same time a bit unnerving as I was pretty certain we were lost. I mean when all you can see is snow and mountains you can’t help but think you are out in the middle of nowhere and took a seriously wrong turn. The views though, they were so beautiful!

Krýsuvík, IcelandKrýsuvík, Iceland

We weren’t lost, as H liked to remind me, and finally we started to see some steam in the near distance signalling to us that Krýsuvík was near. When we arrived to the geothermal area of Krýsuvík we were greeted with lots of steam and the seriously strong smell of sulfur. Don’t let the sulfur smell of the area scare you off, this place was incredibly beautiful to walk around!

Krýsuvík, IcelandKrýsuvík, IcelandKrýsuvík, IcelandKrýsuvík, IcelandKrýsuvík, IcelandKrýsuvík, IcelandKrýsuvík, IcelandKrýsuvík, IcelandKrýsuvík, Iceland

And these pictures were all from the first few minutes! I loved the different colors and textures that were all over. Steam on one side, a small creek rushing by on the other, colors swirling together, Krýsuvík is a hidden gem!

Krýsuvík, IcelandKrýsuvík, IcelandKrýsuvík, IcelandKrýsuvík, IcelandKrýsuvík, IcelandKrýsuvík, IcelandKrýsuvík, IcelandKrýsuvík, IcelandKrýsuvík, IcelandKrýsuvík, IcelandKrýsuvík, IcelandA behind the scenes look, this is what it looks like when H and I visit these types of places. H is all about reading the signs and learning the information in the area. I glance at the signs for a few seconds and then pester H to take my picture.

Krýsuvík, IcelandWe are the dream team :)Krýsuvík, IcelandKrýsuvík, IcelandKrýsuvík, IcelandKrýsuvík, Iceland

With smiles on our faces we piled back into the car, rolled down the windows for the first time in months, and began the drive back to civilization. And then this happened.

Krýsuvík, IcelandIceland WinterKrýsuvík, IcelandKrýsuvík, IcelandKrýsuvík, Iceland

Do I really live here? I mean wow! As I sat on that large rock overlooking the mountains and taking in the view it was one of those surreal moments where I just sat there thinking, “wow, this is my life!”

If your visiting Iceland I highly recommend a trip to Krýsuvík. I can’t wait to return once the sun has melted and see this area in its green glory!

Question of the Day?
Where have you visited lately that left you in awe?

Making My Own Blogging Niche

Iceland in the Winter

Lately I have been feeling a bit blah.

Not homesick, not grumpy, not depressed from the weather (okay some days maybe), really just blah is the best way to put it. I have been finding myself feeling very unmotivated in general and lacking inspiration, particularly when it comes to blogging.

So this past weekend when we woke up to the sun shinning through our windows I knew an outdoor adventure was just what I needed to get a bit of inspiration back in me!

Thanks to a sunny Saturday spent playing around the Icelandic mountains I am heading into April feeling rejuvenated and full of ideas! I mean how could I not feel rejuvenated after spending the day with views like this.

Iceland Winter

With my new spark of inspiration I started thinking over the weekend about why I have been feeling this lack of motivation lately towards my blogging?

I realized that lately I have been putting a lot of pressure on myself to stay with a niche, the travel blogging niche to be exact. Finding your niche is what you hear over and over again as the key to being a successful blogger. For me though, trying to fit myself and my blog into this niche didn’t help me with the direction of my blog, instead I have found it causing me to lose the joy I find in blogging.

Instead of just sitting down and writing whatever I felt like I found myself stopping and thinking “does this post fit in with my niche”? Feeling this pressure of keeping within my niche kept floating around in the back of my mind every time I went down to write, and it quickly began influencing what I was deciding to post, and not in a way that I liked.

I totally get that it is important to have a sense of direction with your blog. Writing about topics all over the place is going to confuse you and your readers so I am all for having a sense of direction with my blog. I just don’t want this direction to completely define my blog or feel like a restriction on my writing.

So the question I have been asking myself lately…

Just because I live abroad, does that mean I have to have a travel blog?

I want to write about travel, because I personally love travel. I don’t always want to write a post full of travel tips, because sometimes I don’t want to be helpful. Some days I just want to share my awesome trip with you all and relive the great memories. And to be honest, I don’t travel near enough to dedicate an entire blog just to traveling posts.

I want to write about my life as an expat, because life as an expat is currently a major aspect of my life. But I don’t want to write a blog where all I talk about is expat life and all things that surround it. Some days I don’t even view myself as an expat anymore. Some days I view Iceland as the place I have lived for awhile, and I just want to talk about my life in Iceland, not my life as an expat.

I want to write about Iceland because I love exploring Iceland and sharing places to see and things to do here. Other times though I just want to post some pictures about the random adventure I just had in my adopted home that will not be beneficial to anyone but my own personal memory.

And other times I want to write about that embarrassing thing that just happened to me. I am quite excellent and getting myself in awkward situations and have to share these stories with someone.

Or I just want to write about how stressed I am with life. Nothing about travel, being an expat, or Iceland, just a plain ole heart to heart all about me.

And this long ramble of thoughts that I made H listen to brought me to this conclusion. I am never going to be one of those bloggers that fits into a “niche” and stays within those lines. Instead I want my blog to reflect me, and all of the randomness that happens in my life. I want to create a place that when you read along it feels like we are talking over a glass of wine about life, not reading an edited version to keep it within the niche.

Because life unscripted is way more fun!

Iceland in Winter

Question of the Day?
Where do you find inspiration? To my fellow bloggers do you try and stick within a niche?

Questions on the Mind

But first a picture of me and my Viking after my annual ball at the Blue Lagoon. Of course we didn’t think to get a picture together at the start of the night. But I am digging our its 3am and we just danced like crazy for the past three hours look.

Annual Ball Blue LagoonMoving on…

So this post is not going to be one that you read to be inspired. It will not leave you with a sense of wanderlust for travel, nor will it leave you with a list of useful tips about traveling to Iceland. This post is what I like to call thought dump, which basically means I have a lot of thoughts running through my mind that are ready to spill out.

So what am I puzzled over lately, I mean that is really what your wondering if you continued to read this post after my warning of an introduction. Well lately I am wondering…

// What should be on my must do list for my upcoming trip to Amsterdam? I am traveling over Easter holiday and so far all I know for sure is that I must visit some tulip fields. I am traveling with two boys which means I am the sole planner of this trip. I really need to get on researching things to do!

// How long can I live in Iceland before I can no longer use the excuse, “oh I haven’t lived here too long, still working on my Icelandic” as my answer to why I don’t speak Icelandic? I am thinking 5 years, and then when I hit the 5 year mark and still get frazzled with Icelandic we will re-evaluate.

// Why didn’t I take more pictures at my annual ball last week? Fail. Oh well I was way too busy having fun, and it seemed to take H and I 5 attempts before getting a decent picture anyways.

Annual Ball Blue LagoonAre we surprised by the fact that we are taking a picture of ourselves?

Annual Ball Blue LagoonOr do I think I am just too above iPhone cameras?

Annual Ball Blue LagoonReally I think I was more interested in getting back to my wine.

Annual Ball Blue LagoonBut finally we got a decent shot. I think everyone at our table thought we were having our own photoshot with the number of pictures H and I took ha. This picture though, we nailed this look on the first shot.

Annual Ball Blue Lagoon

// What is my happy number of blog posts per week? I have been fiddling around with posting 5 times a week, which I feel is a bit too much for me. But then again 3 times a week just doesn’t feel quite right either. For now I am just posting as I feel like it and we will see how that works out.

// H’s birthday is a big one this year and even though it is in June I am already starting to stress out over what I will get him. Confession, I totally suck at giving gifts, but only when it comes to H. Everyone else I can knock it out of the park but for some reason my gift giving skills go out the window when it comes to H. I think it is because he is so darn crafty and creative that his gifts always are so awesome it just makes mine look bad. But not this time, I am going to nail this years birthday gift, I just haven’t quite figured out how.

// How in the world do you put one of those Most Pinned buttons on the side of your blog? You know what I am talking about, where you can use an image from a popular post and people can see the number of times it has been pinned as well as pin it themselves? I tried for far to long to add this to my sidebar, and if you didn’t notice it is still not there, so I failed.

// Why is it so difficult for me to write a pitch email to send to companies. I have several ideas for collaborations with different companies in Iceland, I know what I want to say, but when I go to write the email I get so uncomfortable and nervous I totally freeze up and end up writing nothing. I need to just take the plunge and not be so worried about rejection. Easier said than done right.

// When can I get a puppy??? I am absolutely dying over all the pictures my parents keep sending me of their sweet puppy Opal.

Puppy OpalI mean, this is just too much cuteness for me to handle!

TGIF! Have a great weekend everyone. I am looking forward to a relaxing weekend gearing up for our trip to Amsterdam! Check back in over the weekend for a look at the books I have been reading lately.

Question of the Day?
If you have some answers to these questions share your wisdom with me in the comments!

Visiting Iceland Via Pinterest

When Pinterest hit the scene I was all over it. I mean who wasn’t right? I could can spend hours sucked into the beautiful pages of Pinterest, it is my blackhole for sure.

For all the time I spend on Pinterest it took me awhile before I put two and two together and realized that Pinterest was an awesome resource for trip planning. If you are not using Pinterest to help plan your travels you should!

So how do I use Pinterest for planning my travels?

Well, I don’t use it for logistical things (finding accommodation etc), but when it comes to planning the things I want to do on a trip Pinterest is my go to resource. As soon as I type in the name of the place I will be visiting my screen is filled with beautiful pictures and I start pinning away mentally planning how I can fit everything in on my trip. The best part is that many of the things I find on Pinterest are ones I had yet to read elsewhere and would have missed otherwise.

A few weeks ago I was using Pinterest to look up things to do for our upcoming trip to Amsterdam when I started wondering what the holy pages of Pinterest recommend one to do when in Iceland. Let’s just say my Icelandic bucket list tripled and I can’t believe how many more stunning places I have yet to hear of! Here are a few of the ones I am absolutely lusting after.

Fjaðrárgljúfur Canyon

Fjaðrárgljúfur Canyonvia
Located in the south east of Iceland this beautiful canyon was created by progressive erosion from the flowing water from glaciers. What this really means is that this place was created by magic and we should all go visit it!

Hverfjall

Hverfjall via
A visit to a volcano is a must when traveling to the land of fire and ice don’t you think? I personally prefer a non-erupting volcano so a visit to Hverfjall in the north of Iceland sounds perfect to me. Just look at how beautiful the Hverfjall crater is!

Þrídrangar

Þrídrangar via
Your eyes are not deceiving you, that is indeed a lighthouse hanging out at the top of one massive rock in the ocean. I don’t even understand how this was built there (or why) but I would love to see it from afar, no way could I go all the way out there, it just looks terrifying!

Waterfall of Gods

Waterfall of Gods, Icelandvia
I don’t even care if this picture is totally Photoshopped, I must see these waterfalls! This place reminds me of a childhood movie favorite FernGully (anyone else know the movie I am talking about?) I owe it to my 6 year old self who dreamed of visiting FernGully to visit the Waterfall of Gods don’t you think?

Kirkjufell

Kirkjufellvia
I may not be able to pronounce the name of this unique mountain but with the flooding of pictures that appears in my Pinterest feed it is clearly a sign it is one I need to visit.

Valley of Tears

Valley of Tears, Iceland via
Valley of Tears of Joy is what this place should be called! How incredibly beautiful is this? Iceland, you just take stunning waterfalls to the next level don’t you!

Thanks to Pinterest I am pretty sure my list of places I want to see in Iceland is never going to stop growing. But if they are all as beautiful as the ones above that is fine by me!

Question of the Day?
Do you use Pinterest for travel planning?