June on The Little Backpacker

June on The Little Backpacker

A post about everything I have been up to this month in London, the UK and my travels. Blogs I’ve loved, books I’ve read, music I’ve been listening to and a catch up with what I’ve written this blog on this blog and further afield. 

Every month, during those final days I’ll see a blog post on my Bloglovin’ feed summing up someones month and wonder why their post about the previous month is quite late. That is when I realise that it isn’t late but that the month is about to end and that post is just a day or so early. It has happened every month for the past three months, life seems to have quicken pace a lot lately and I’m not sure that is a good thing – I’d appreciate November stay as far away as possible.

sunset in richmond park


I PASSED FIRST YEAR OF UNIVERSITY, I don’t know why I was so convinced I was going to fail when all my grades had been good throughout the year. I came out with a high 2-1 scoring a first on two or three assignments which I’m over the moon about! And way on to what I actually did this month…

June feels like it only just started, I’m not really sure where the time has gone except for those periods of it I’ve spent out of the country. It has been a bit of a strange month trying to settle into a routine for the summer months but struggling to find any form of routine due to work. Working for an agency has its perks but the uncertainty of work can be alarming at times and make planning ahead a pesky task.

This month I’ve spent a night back in The New Forest, feeding the horses and enjoying the countryside. The boyfriend and I have been spending many a night walking around Richmond Park, enjoying these late summer nights and the warm weather London has been blessed with. We’ve been dreaming about camp and longing to be doing our summer in northern Michigan all over again. I also signed up to a 140 hour TEFL course because I needed something to occupy me over the summer (you know, instead of resting ready for year two of my degree). Oh and I sorted out my accommodation for after September when our lease on our current flat ends.

This month has been a lot of trying to settle in to something but not really knowing how to build a routine which is only going to come undone come September, when I’m doing to have to completely restructure my life. However, most importantly, this month there has been not one but two trips abroad…

Where I’ve Been Travelling This Month

Portugal portugal

Portugal – Lisbon

Our holiday this month was to Portugal, we flew in the Lisbon and stayed around the coast in Estoril. It was a proper ‘holiday’ instead of the crazy city break we had in Barcelona last month. We played by the pool, relaxed by the sea, went surfing, explored Lisbon and Sintra and enjoyed a very slow way of life for the week. You’ll probably have noticed I’ve already begun writing about this trip on the blog and I have a few more posts to share with you yet.

spain Spain

Spain – Ronda

This month I also flew out to Malaga with a British family from Hong Kong as their holiday nanny. This was a new kind of work for me despite having been a nanny for the last four years. Being a holdiay nanny seemed like a great way to travel and get paid for it. Truth is it  isn’t that glamorous as I have literally spent 24/7 with the family since meeting them in Gatwick. Still I’ve got to see the beauty of Ronda in southern Spain and my days have consisted of playing in the sun and pool with some extremely fun children. I just would have preferred a little time to explore the area myself. (I have another nanny holiday job booked in August where I will travel for 5 days after and this now feels like the right way to do it!)

What I’ve Been Writing

This month I feel like I have been back in business with blogging, even having posts scheduled ahead of time! It’s nice to have time to spend on the blog after putting all my efforts into uni work.

This month I wrote a piece for The Blazing Nomad about Barcelona which was their feature of the month.

On the blog I started the month off by running my first ever giveaway which seemed pretty successful, thanks to everyone who entered. I then finished off my own Barcelona posts, including a review of our awesome Airbnb stay. My posts about Portugal started before I even left but trying out a packing video, I have since written several more things about Portugal. Finally there was a post about my Fiat 500 road trip in the UK and ultimate London list and a new lists page made on the blog including my addition of a 25 before 25 list.

What I’ve Been Listening To

Emmi – If I Ever Come Home

Mumford and Sons – Believe

What I’ve Been Reading This Month Blog

june - reading in spain

One of my goals for this summer was to read, I have so much course reading at university that I struggle to find time to read fiction for pleasure. I have already made my way through three books this month and have just started my fourth. Good job our bookshelf is full to the brim with reading material.

Wild – Cheryl Strayed: I watched the film of this back in January having forgotten it was even a book. Not long after I remembered talking about the book with Emily from The Grown Up Gap Year Blog as Wild was one of her Travel Book Club picks last year. I’d loved the film but oh the book was so much better! Compared to the film, the book went into much more detail about what led Cheryl to hike the PCT and mapped everything together a lot better. I didn’t find her character as self absorbed as people had warned and I still could put the book down despite knowing the story.

The Rise and Fall of Great Powers – Tom Rachman: I loved the blurb of this book but then struggled to get into it to begin with. With the book set in three different time periods throughout Tooly’s life it was like fitting a jigsaw together as the story unfolded. I was always trying to be one step ahead of the book and then finally I was gripped. The book spans over Thailand, New York and Wales – having visited all I was able to picture where the events were taking place – as well as a strong focus on a life of travel: perfect. However, I was disappointed with the end, I felt like it finished on a cliff hanger with many things still not wrapped up. Still as my boyfriend reminded me, sometimes I just don’t get the ending and this may have been the case this time.

Gone Girl – Gillian Flynn: Another book which is a film, however, this one I have refused to watch the film until I read the book. Yes the book has been in my ‘to read’ pile for a long time. I normally find it hard to get into a book, especially when I’ve just finished an awesome story where I loved the characters. Gone Girl was totally different, I was hooked after the first two chapters and couldn’t put it down as all the twists and turns unfolded. I was quite pleased with myself when I guessed the first part but then more and more unexpected events happened I just couldn’t stop reading. The film has a lot of live up to now!

Posts I’ve Loved This Month

Posts about life have been the ones that have really resinated with me this month, no more so than the following two articles… This post by Elite Daily on careers had me thinking that a happy life is important and there is more to it than a career. Similar thoughts were had about this post on Thought catalog about life, reminding me we should be happy with the life we live.

You ruin your life by tolerating it. At the end of the day you should be excited to be alive.

Another post about life by This American Girl had me remembering it was okay to not have a fu*king clue what you are doing with your life. This post by Rosie on happiness was exactly what I needed this month and finally this post by Laura about knowing what you need from your life in different moments was a good read.

Of course this is a travel blog and it would only be right if I shared an article or two from a travel blog. This months prangs of wanderlust came from Ayla as she walked about her challenging but rewarding time hiking the Inca Trail – something I would love to do, one day. Oh and we cannot forget this post about awesome swimming pools by Hand Luggage Only.

I also discovered the travel blog Flying The Nest this month, it is the journey of an Australian couple travelling the world and sharing dreamy photos and videos of their lives.


At the moment (on paper) July looks like it could be a mundane month with no travel abroad – the first since April. However, I know how quickly things can change with me and currently I have a few days off near the end of the month. What I do know we will be doing this month is: a party to celebrate the 4th of July and pretend we are back at Camp America, some fun London outings where JP and I have booked surprises for each other, another trip home to The New Forest, cricket at the Oval and a blogging event by Thomas Cook about Turkey. I will also be finalising the details of our France road trip which will commence on the 1st of August!

What did you get up to in June? Comment below with your highlight of the month


  1. 6th July 2015 / 11:38 am

    Haha, if your plans for July are for a ‘quiet month’ I wouldn’t want to see your busy one! 😉 Congrats again on passing your first year or uni, I know you’ve worked so hard for it. Also glad you enjoyed Wild. I still haven’t seen the film yet!

    • Jodie Louise
      9th July 2015 / 8:46 am

      Thanks lovely. Oh I know I really don’t know how to do quiet…

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