I’ve Moved!

Hey everyone!

I’ve moved! I’ll no longer be blogging at saajida.wordpress.com as I now have my own independently-hosted website: saajida.co.za. This announcement makes me both happy and sad as I’ve had an amazing two years and two months blogging with WordPress.com.

My new site looks exactly the same as this one as it’s with WordPress.org, so don’t stress – you’ll be able to navigate yourself around with ease :)

I’m so excited and looking forward to seeing you all there!

PS: A redirect will be put in place soon, making this site inaccessible in the near future.

Happy nybbling!

- Saajida

Tea by the Sea

It was October last year when I had made up my mind: I simply had to do high tea at 12 Apostles Hotel before the new year. I laugh now as I think about it… I only tried it out 5 days ago.

The location needs no introduction. The closer we got to the hotel, our excitement heightened with each breathtaking view of Camps Bay and beyond.

A booking for two for Tea by the Sea at the Leopard Bar meant we could enjoy our tea in the sunshine, and devour our treats indoors – on comfortable sofas with too many cushions. The halal-friendly option had salmon, cheese & tomato and egg & mayo sandwiches accompanied by two tiers of sweet treats. The verdict: I would definitely return. Even if only for their sandwiches; they were divine!

The view is gorgeous (& romantic) and would be an ideal experience for out-of-towners. I’ll let the pictures do the talking now…

lions-head
View of Lion’s Head from the outdoor seating
sea
Stretch of Atlantic Ocean
tea-stand
3 Tier tea stand
cupcake
Cinnamon cupcake & ganache
bar
The Leopard Bar interior
on the way back home
Mountains on the way back home

I wasn’t too fond of the Leopard Bar decor but that won’t stop me from returning :)

How to Stay Creative

It’s an odd topic, isn’t it? Being creative is unique to each individual and sometimes you just can’t quite tell how to keep your creative juices flowing.

Creativity isn’t an emotion; it isn’t a friend you call up in the middle of the night and neither is it a choc-chip cookie (sadly!).  It’s being able to use your imagination and being original in what you do. Because it comes from within, pinpointing exactly what triggers it for everybody is tricky. But it doesn’t hurt to give a few new things a try…

Writing is fun and rewarding but only for as long as I can stay creative. And unfortunately, I only get creative in short doses now and again. I’ve come across a video on 29 Ways to Stay Creative that actually lists a few things I personally do: clearing up my work space, visiting new places, taking breaks (or perhaps that’s just the procrastinator side of me talking).  It has some fantastic, and more importantly viable, ideas that I just had to share with you.

How do you stay creative? Share your tips in the comments below, I’d love to know!

Instagram vs Facebook?

Facebook may own Instagram and they both have instant photo sharing in common, but what sets them apart? And why choose one platform over the other?

instagram-logoI’ve only joined Instagram in the last 14 days and I have already made up my mind: I prefer Instagram over Facebook. It’s no secret that I’ve been bored with Facebook. One of those reasons being that it gets too detail-oriented for something social and supposedly light-hearted (messy break-ups through questionable Facebook activity comes to mind here).

Instagram on the other hand, is simple. It’s user-friendly and the compelling visual content makes it addictive. I wouldn’t say I’m into photography, but I do love taking a great picture or two every now and then. And Instagram seems to be the ideal platform to share my ‘works’ ;) So here’s why I will always prefer Instagram over Facebook:

  1. Instagram is short and sweet. Basically, all you need is a picture or video & a caption. That’s it. You can’t post without visual content, so it’s bound to be eye-catching. After all,  a picture is worth a thousand words
  2. Because of point #1, it means that it’s quicker to go through many posts in a shorter space of time as compared to Facebook. It takes (me) longer to go through Facebook than Instagram: I spend close onto 15 minutes to get up-to-date with friends on Facebook whereas I’m done in less than 5 minutes on Instagram.
  3. If you’re a photographer at heart, there’s much more room for creativity.  It has an adequate range of filters to enhance your images and get creative with them before posting. Due to those options and the nature of Instagram, I’ve now become more conscious of how I take pictures, trying to be as original as possible in terms of angle, focus, the backdrop, etc.
  4. Basic Instagram profile. I’ve mentioned this in my comparison between Twitter and Facebook – Facebook prompts you for information almost all the time.  With Instagram (and much like Twitter) you have a profile that’s minimal but still sums up who you are without asking you which high school you’ve attended and where were you previously working (that’s why there’s LinkedIn, Zuckerberg).

Facebook still has a staggering 1.26 billion users as compared to Instagram’s modest 200 million users but upon breaking down the statistics, the demographics may explain the discrepancy. Feeling young, flamboyant and have a keen eye for stunning images? Yep, you know you belong on Instagram ;)

Dandy Dubai: A Man-Made Majesty

Some say they love it and others say… well, what I say: it was good while it lasted but I wouldn’t return.

Dubai is a beautifully made city. In the last two decades the Arabs built (not physically, their clothing simply cannot get messed y’know), enhanced and beautified what was once a plain and ordinary place. Impressive. But it lacks a little something… A soul. Every city has a soul; a warm and welcoming hum that you automatically tune in to when you touch ground. Perhaps my signal went haywire but Dubai’s constant rush, unashamed materialism and culture of snobbery made it difficult to feel at home.

There’s plenty of awe-inspiring pieces of architecture around Dubai, making it a photographer’s paradise. At every corner there’s some kind of entertainment offering, surrounding you with only the physical pleasures of life. Having said that, I won’t complain about South Africa again as I’ve realised how lucky I am to be living in a naturally stunning and friendly country that not many other places can boast about. That aside, below are some highlights of my trip:

Sunset in Dubai
Sunset in Dubai
Desert Safari
Desert Safari
The Desert
The Desert
Replica of & the real Burj Khalifa
Replica of & the real Burj Khalifa
View from Burj Khalifa
View from Burj Khalifa
7 high-tea
High Tea at the Park Hyatt Dubai
8 dubai-mall
Dubai Mall

All pictures have been taken with my iPhone 5, some were edited slightly to enhance the colour.

unleash the element within

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