Finalist with Newbie Blog Award!

I am very proud to say that my blog got me finalist in the Newbie Outdoor Blog Award.

Thank you to Shaun at Simply Hike for sorting out the award and the fantastic communication, my first ever trophy, and a very nice one at that!

My walk blog is probably going to wrap up now for summer and as the walk is over I feel it wouldn’t be worth me carrying on writing, but I might just pick it back up at a later date with a new adventure, so keeps your eyes out! Enjoy your summer everyone and thanks again for all the support, it has been an incredible journey.

Goodbye for now x

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The last day! 

Hello everyone! 

I tried to post last night but it failed and I was so tired. I have been feeling more and more tired as the last week has come to a close I think my mind is ready to stop. 

Today is my last and final day walking! My goodness I can’t believe it is over and I am actually saying it. What a journey…. 

I want to thank all the lovely people for their donations, their support, their genuine kindness, we humans can sometimes pull together and I really have felt blessed. 

A huge thank you goes to Karen for putting up with me yesterday and my madness! I have such belief in TWOWEEKS and the work that is being done. I am proud to walk for the charity, very very proud to be apart of it all. 

I think this walk is going to bring big changes to my life and I do feel like a calmer better person. I am ready for what is to come! I am the happiest I have ever been and I think it is because I have left go of my fears and also all that nature I’ve been surrounded by. Glorious! 

A huge thank you to the lovely ladies at The Old Bell for the lovely scallops and a little smile, that was a hard day so thank you. 

Here is to the last day and to the many more adventures to come! Today I walk from Harrow to Twickenham, my final destination, a final 11 miles. 

Thank you to everyone and of course any last donations, you know what to do! Click here

One last round of photos from the last few days of walking, I covered Bedford to Flitwick to Luton to St. Albans. 

See you on the other side! 

   
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
   

Nearing the 300 mile mark… 

Hello my lovely readers!

It has been a few days since I have updated you all on my adventure. I’ve been very busy meeting people and having lots of fun. And also moaning a lot about carrying my tortoise bag for what feels like a million miles. 

I’m still in very good spirit because of all the kind gestures from people along the way. Let me tell you what has been happening…

It started with the lovely ladies at Smeatons Lakes, they gave us a free night. Very kind of you thank you Lesley! We came across the place where they make British Sugar which was interesting and ate some tasty food served by a very kind young lady at The Ram in Newark. 

We walked through a rather lot of fields! And with my new found friends having a sniff, the cows, one actually licked my hand which I was very happy about. We came across an AMAZING poppy field, completely full of Poppies, it was such a beautiful site. One I will never forget. We laid in the grass, picked some flowers, ate some delicious food. 

The day before yesterday we were absolutely shattered and decided to stop after about 8 or 9 miles in a very nice pub in Hose called The Rose and Crown, the owner was very sweet and even allowed us to camp in her Paddock. So of course many beers and pizzas later we spent the night there. Which I do believe was a bird sanctuary and they all decided to tweet away at 4am. The beautiful croaky pigeon was amongst the team. And as you all know I love the sound of the wood pigeon. (Not). Very kind owners and we thank them for the free accommodation. X

I think yesterday might of been one of the best days we’ve had. Firstly we met Nigel. Now Nigel really is a one in a million. You just don’t come across people so kind as he is. A thank you from the bottom of our hearts. He firstly served us some tasty pork pies, the only place in Melton Mawbray to get pies. We had a great chat about life, the walk, the area etc. He then wrapped up some scones, all buttered and delicious, and he dropped off our food shopping to the camp site! Just such a warm soul and a lovely human being. Thank you Nig x

Last night was very enjoyable staying at Eye Kettleby Lakes, which might I add they gave to us for free!! A beautiful wooden restaurant and bar. Oh my goodness the showers were just incredible. They had that real wood sauna smell to them. Clean, tidy, just really kept well. A huge thank you to the owner of the land, a very gentle man and Craig and the bar lady. 

And thank you Kev for the £5 donation! 

Gosh I feel like I have waffled on a rather lot but I feel very humbled from all my experiences with other humans who pass me by along my journey. People stop by the road and ask if we need a ride, they come up to us and have a chat. I will remember each and ever special moment always. The first 3 weeks were magical and without my bag it was almost trainng for this last push. 

I hope you haven’t nodded off, but maybe my little post today will bring a smile to your face and cheer up your Monday. After all. Life is good, stay happy and keep walking! 

   
                                     

And the sunshine came out

oh we have had a lovely couple of days of sunshine and tomorrow they say it is still going to be lovely again. I have ever growing strange tan lines, the sock lines are the most flattering 😉 

The middle part of the UK is rather dull not much to differentiate one day from the next lots of sweet country villages and windy roads to navigate round. Very pretty and sweet but not where I would chose to actually live. I am missing London today I must say. 

So the last couple of days I walked a variety of some days alone and some with my dad and some afternoons with my mum. It’s all just going very well really. My feet are happy little walker feet. My face is brown and rosy and the tent is now up and back in action! Well the new one. We purchased an Out Well, much better. No offence Vango but your Icaruas tent was pretty shite. We are much happier and I am really growing attached to my little house and roll matts. 

All in all a happy, simple few days and really looking forward to having a day off to take photos, not to stop walking of course. I could walk forever… My feet just want to keep going and going. Maybe my next walking adventure will be The Great Wall of China? 

I am just about to go to bed safely wrapped up in my sleeping bag. We face the outskirts of Leeds tomorrow as we are currently just East of the main city. Keeping as rural as possible. 

Happy Hump Day! X

   
        

A slight path alteration through a few fields under and over a few fences across a river. Usual    

One of my favourite flowers

     

The daily feet regime 

Thinking out loud… 

Sometimes stepping away from the normality of the daily grind can help one to understand what is important and what is not important in our lives. 

We hold onto possessions and objects, our phones rule us, we are closed and forget to live and breathe the air we are so freely given. 

Instead of rushing from A to B take a moment to see others around us, just stop and say hello to passers by on the street. It is kind. Nature is kind. Don’t constantly look down, glued to your phone, look up, look out, there is so much to see and involve your mind in. 

I hope you agree. 

Day 2 17 mile walk Hannah and Papa Ranken 

Day 2 May 26th walking the A68 

So yesterday (26th May) was a good day knocking off 1/500th of the route with a 17 mile day, every little helps after all. 

Awful bit of road kill every 1 mile, dead crows, dead deers, dead badger, rabbits, pheasants you name it, it was there… a very sad distressed birdie was calling out for his friend which was saw lying dead on the road side, very sad to know that a human had done this in their car and probably not even noticed. 

On a lighter note, glorious sunshine beamed down on us so made the day rather enjoyable. All in all a great day. Proud of my dad for enduring the miles. Going it alone tomorrow.  

Some photos from the trip: 

   
               

The Ranken’s Adventure

So tomorrow is the BIG day, we are off, off and away up to Edinburgh.

Tomorrow is the start of my journey, we drive up in the early hours, set up camp to start walking on Monday. I have my maps, my gear, my feet and my mind… I guessI am as ready as they can be? How ready can you be for a 400 mile walk. I do not know what is to come but I have a very positive, happy outlook on all this. I have my supporters, all you lovely donators and my parents, gosh they have been so very kind, I am forever thankful to them, as without them this walk just would not be going ahead.

So watch this space, I will be updating when I can, probably with stories of a lost toe, an adopted dog and maybe even a few miles achieved. We shall see what Scotland has to offer. Here we go!

Just thinking aloud…

This morning I met a man that enlightened me. I felt uplifted in seeing the good work he does out in South Africa, it brought me back to the reality of why I am doing this walk in the first place. It has made me want to write a little… so here goes…

I often get rather bogged down on the nitty gritty, let’s remember what this walk is actually all about, why did I start this in the first place?

Kids that need support, that do not have a family, a mother to hold their hand and pick them back up when they are low, they are the ones that I am walking for!

Someone asked me the other day “What will you do when you are so low and want to give up?” Well all I have to do is think these kids cannot just give up, they cannot just walk away from what is happening in their life so why should I? All I need to do is get up and walk, then sleep and eat, and then just get up and walk again and again until it is done. Simple, right?

I have this overwhelming drive and inner soul that is always wanting to escape and I think some people think I am one big joke. “Is this girl for real?” I am for real, I am not a joke and I have so much to give.

Fancy sponsoring my walk? CLICK HERE

Thank you for reading, maybe today is your day to stop and make a difference?

Make your own energy bars!

Granola bars are a great blend of fruit and nuts held together in a tasty, chewy package that will travel well in your day bag or jersey pocket.

The great thing about these homemade energy bars is that you can use fruit spreads as part of the paste to bind everything together, giving it more taste and more natural sugars too.

Ingredients

  • 80g butter
  • 80g honey
  • 40g pear and apricot or prune spread
  • 80g dark brown sugar
  • 120g jumbo oats
  • 30g walnut pieces
  • 30g sultanas
  • 30g organic dried apricots
  • 30g pumpkin seeds
  • 30g sunflower seeds
  • 30g linseeds

Method

1. Preheat your oven to 190°C. Now line a 20cm round (or square) baking tin with greaseproof baking paper and thinly grease the inside of it.

2. In a large saucepan melt the butter, honey, fruit spread and sugar together on a medium heat, stirring until dissolved. Now bring it to the boil and cook for two minutes so that the sugar caramelises, making it a sticky sauce.

3. Add the oats and mix well then add all of the other fruits, nuts and seeds. Give this a good mix, then pour it into the cake tin and pat down with the back of a metal spoon. Then place the tin in the middle of the oven.

4. Cook for 15 to 20 minutes until set. If it starts to burn before then, cover it with foil. Once ready just turn it out and leave to cool on a rack, then slice into wedges to suit your appetite.

Chef’s tips

This is a sweet snack thanks to the honey and fruit paste, but most of the sugars are slower burning fruit sugars so you shouldn’t get a big rush/crash from these bars. Oats contain lots of soluble fibre that helps to regulate sugar release so this balances well with the sweetness.

This recipe does contain a lot of different ingredients so try shopping in a health food store that sells by weight so you can just get what you need. Alternatively, if you don’t want to buy all that, just pick your favourites and add more of them, or swap the fruit paste for more honey, the walnuts for pecans and so on.

As long as you get a thick, firm mixture to push into the cake tin you should find it’s still super tasty.

Thanks guys, will definitely be trying this recipe out 🙂