Radio Silence

I’ve been pretty quiet with posts this past week. This is largely because I went on a high school Retreat that I volunteer for, during this I have no time and limited network access. I didn’t have time to write or prepare posts.

But I think that’s ok. Everyone needs a break, which brings me to the other reason that Kooklah was silent for awhile, I have been putting my energy into supporting and helping my family.
Today I am working on some posts, and will upload one today.

For now, here is a quote I am loving…


Sometimes we just need to have faith that if things aren’t clear, they will be. One day.

Talk soon! KOOKLAH
Follow KOOKLAH Blog on Facebook and for daily insights head to instagram and look up @saregiak {creator + writer behind the blog}

.:.:.:. KOOKLAH .:.:.:.

Guest Post: Tips to Improve Skin Texture

It has always been the dream of every woman to achieve extra smooth skin. However, this desire can seem so out of reach for most women as they just seem unable to achieve it. This can be mainly attributed to the ineffective methods that most women use. The following ways though, can be used to achieve great texture for your skin.


Stop using anti-aging products

Many women use many anti-aging products in a bid to make their skin look younger and smooth. Overuse of these products though, can actually work to your disadvantage. They can cause irritation, make the skin appear more red and flaky. Fine lines can also appear on the skin as these products can cause dryness so it is probably best to stop using them.

Less washing of the skin

It has long been believed that if wash often, your skin will become smooth and soft to the touch. Too much washing can however, bring in the opposite effect. This is because it can remove the skin’s natural moisturizing oils and cause dryness and redness. It also overworks the skin causing it to produce more oils to provide protection and one can thus end up with dry yet oily skin.



Exfoliation really has gained a bad reputation as it is thought to dry and thin the skin. This is however not true as it really helps to remove the dead skin on the surface. It also helps increasing cell turnover making the skin produce moisture bearing properties. Exfoliation also helps in collagen and elastin production and all these properties combine to give one smooth skin. Caution should however be observed as overdoing it can give bad results.

Good diet

Diets are not only meant for those who wish to shed extra pounds because a good diet can go a long way in improving your skin. Foods rich in omega-3 oils and lean proteins help the skin retain moisture. In addition, foods rich in anti-oxidants and minerals such as magnesium are also good in improving the texture of skin.


This is probably the most basic move you can use to make your skin smooth. Water goes a long way in making your skin more elastic and improving its texture. Failure results in dry rough skin so it is extremely important that you get enough water and other fluids to maintain a smooth skin.


It would be extremely dumb to want smooth skin if you do not moisturize. Do it as often as possible, preferably twice in a day. This will ensure that your skin is optimally hydrated and the cracks on the surface of the skin are well sealed hence making your skin achieve a smooth texture.

The above were just some of the ways that one can improve the texture of your skin. Follow this few tips and the results will be mind-blowing.


*Author Bio*


Slayton Jacob lives in Bedford way, London, UK and is an avid reader and blogger. He is also fond of writing. Since his early years he’s had a passion for writing. His articles have been published in several Blogs. He works as a guest blogger on his chosen areas of interest and currently writes on behalf of EHIC which helps in medical emergencies.

*  *  *  *  *

Thanks Jacob for this fabulous information! My Mum drummed the importance of a good skin care regime into me from a young age, and I am so thankful I listened. For anyone thinking it is too late – it is not! Follow these tips to brighter, healthier and smoother skin… what is your current skin care regime?



Thankful for Travel…

So I am writing this post late, I had a very busy day, which for me is not always conducive to good writing or inspiration.  I have many travel type posts that I want to bring to my readers, as Thursday has recently become Travel Inspiration Thursday on KOOKLAH. A way to provide travel anecdotes or advice regularly and hopefully provide inspiration for travel often!

Today, I thought I would write a different style of post, I have decided to link up to Creating Contentment, for Thankful Thursday. In keeping with travel as a theme, I decided I would write about some things I am thankful for – that are relevant to this theme.


Above is a picture snapped in 2012 in New York City on a walk from Brooklyn to Manhattan.  It is one of my most favourite pictures with a splash of what became my favourite city behind me. Traveling makes me feel alive and blessed for all that I have. For that I am thankful, I feel it is a blessing to be able to experience another culture, country and meet it’s people. To keep it simple today, I am going to list ten other things I am thankful for, but I could go on forever.

1. When I was very young, around 4 or 5, my Mum passed on an old Atlas to my sister and I. It had this big, beautiful coloured world map. I would lie on my belly on the floor looking at that map for hours and imagining big adventures in my head. As I got older I would go through the atlas and take turns reading about different cities, cultures and countries. I was in awe. I am so incredibly thankful that Mum gave us the Atlas and didn’t throw it out… Mum gave me the very thing that sparked my interest in travel and I won’t ever forget it.


2. I am thankful that I was raised by two kind, loving, honest, well-rounded and supportive parents. Who gave my siblings and I an upbringing that was full of knowledge, stories and encouragement to be open minded and accepting of people no matter their race, religion, culture or sexuality. Due this we all have interest in exploring places other than our own.

3. I am thankful that a friend came to me at the start of 2012 with an idea to do a tour of the USA. It was fun, an eyeopener and a great way to spend my first overseas trip!

4. I feel blessed that we went to the memorial at The World Trade site. It is the first massive world event I can remember (I was in year six) and it changed how I’d viewed the world. To go there was so humbling and moving, looking at those pools with the water continually running, I felt thankful to live in a safe place and thankful to have the opportunity to pay respects to the people whose souls I had long thought of and cried for.

5. I am thankful that I feel continually inspired by the world and some of the amazing places I have seen. Like the Grand Canyon in Nevada, Stonehenge in the UK and the Eiffel Tower all lit up + sparkling in Paris. To see some future places I hope to see, read my post Five Destinations to Explore.


6. I am thankful that I have an AMAZING travel agent who goes above and beyond, and always gets excited as if it is her own holiday. Her hardwork and enthusiasm is such a bonus.

7. I am thankful to have had the opportunity to have worked hard and secured a good position that allows me to fund my travel.

8. I am thankful that my boss granted me permission to take a longer period of leave for the USA Adventure I am planning, which will take place from the end of December this year to the start of Feb next year.

9. I am thankful to my friends Lauren and Chris who are joining me for a third of my trip, it will be fun to spend two and a half weeks together which will include New Years Eve.

10. I am excited for the experience we will have when we stay in New York City for two weeks, not in a hotel, but in an apartment! Will give us a more ‘local’ experience.  I am thankful we could find a good deal, in an incredible location. I am so thankful, as it was starting to get stressful.

I hope you have enjoyed this post, be sure to check out the other thankful posts which will be linked via Creating Contentment’s site. I’m interested in what you are thankful for, travel or otherwise.

Kooklah xo




A yummy, healthy-ish snack

I don’t know about you, but I enjoy indulging in a small amount of dark chocolate on a semi-regular basis. If you purchase one with a high percentage of cacao, I find you can’t eat as much of it as you could with milk or flavoured chocolate.


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As written by Women’s Health Magazine dark chocolate with 70% or higher cacao holds multiple health benefits. Some benefits include reducing stress and blood pressure, as well as the risk of heart disease or stroke, and assisting with weight maintenance (probably as less is eaten) and increasing mental function.

With this in mind, combined with a craving for chocolate {there is none in the house}, I decided that I wanted to make use of the benefits – and my enjoyment – of dark chocolate.  I came up with the following snack and can’t wait to head to the shops tomorrow, buy ingredients and try it!

Dark Chocolate Mixers

The concept is pretty simple, get some dark chocolate to melt down and mix other healthy ingredients into it, let the chocolate set, and then enjoy! What you use is really up to you, below I’ve depicted what I will make first, but first – some ingredient possibilities…

* Dried fruit e.g cranberry,  apricot, banana chips
* Nuts that are unsalted, roasted (no flavour, salt or coating)
* Trail mix, oats or cereals like Special K or Cornflakes
* Seeds
* Dessicated coconut
* Plain, unsweetened popcorn

Tomorrow I make ones combining dark chocolate,  chopped cranberries and unsalted peanuts, I will update with some shots when they have set!


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What would you put in your mixers? I like the idea of having a container of these in the kitchen for a quick snack that is tasty and not completely unhealthy to have as an occasional treat. Do you already make something similar?

Join Kooklah on Facebook and if you enjoyed this post please click like below, share or comment – I love to hear from you!
Kooklah xo




Treat Yourself …

Everyone deserves to feel special, happy and worthy. You may receive this from the attention or actions of others, but I think it is important – possibly more important – to give to yourself.

There is a quote from Diane Von Furstenburg that reminds me of the old ‘have to love yourself before someone will love you’. It reinforces that the way you treat yourself is as important as the way you treat others and that in fact a good relationship with yourself will only improve the relationships with other people in your life.


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To fulfill this idea, you need to spend time getting to know yourself. From the physical to the mental, what you like and what you don’t,  the things in life that make you happy and are important. In Why not go alone? I wrote about the reasons why spending time on your own is a vital aspect to a fulfilling life; to really know yourself, to clear your mind or perspective, gain independence …
By utilising some individual time it will help to create balance in your life and encourage you to be reflective,  supportive,  kind and realistic with yourself.

A fantastic way to build your self-relationship is by treating yourself. Showing yourself some love and kindness will increase your self belief, confidence and worth. If you do, you’ll shine brightly and attract others who do too.

I’m not just encouraging you to do this, I have made a commitment to attending to my needs as well.
Lately I have been really focused on my mental and emotional health – I’ve gone for walks in the sun with my dog, continued doing yoga at home, am participating in the 100 days of happiness challenge (see the Kooklah introductory post – 100 Days of Happy – update post to come soon) and am trying to step away from negativity by spending more time with positive people. Today I allowed myself to enjoy a facial + complimentary warm oil foot massage {first one ever- I’m sold} and an expresso martini with dinner.

Look after YOU,
Kooklah X.O


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Gold Eyeshadow

Gold eyeshadow is the new white. Seriously. I stopped using white shadow to ‘open’ my eyes and switched to gold about six months ago. I love it.

Gold eyeshadow doesn’t have to bring connotations of over the top, showy looks, it can be used for a glam night out but also as a casual day look. Use it in the day time to brighten your face, make eyes pop and add some subtle glam.


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The best part is, gold eyeshadow is super easy, you don’t have to layer it to build colour and it looks fantastic even without other makeup! Just swipe some on your eyelids and the inner corner of your eye, for an instant pick me up {it is my go to if I am tired} and it looks good on all skin types/tones.

If you do want to dress it up from day to night but still keep it low-key, try adding tinted moisturiser, a flick of eyeliner, some mascara and a berry toned lip.


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Have you got a bright-eyed makeup trick of your own?
Kooklah xo


Guest Post: Goodbyes

Goodbyes can be difficult. Saying goodbye to someone can be full of heartbreak and a moment of loss.

Of course in our modern technological laden world, a goodbye doesn’t need to be permanent. There are many ways we can keep in contact with someone despite them leaving. This is the joy of social media.

It is time for me to say goodbye. I have written a semi-regular fortnightly guest post for Kooklah for almost six months. It is now time for this stage to come to an end. My blog is growing and I am enjoying putting too much time and energy into it. I want to focus upon my blog in this time of growth. So, unfortunately I need to stop my regular contributions to Kooklah.

I love the style that Kooklah radiates. She is truly beautiful. And, her knowledge! I love this post on embracing headscarfs. I refer to it often and practice at home!

Perhaps one day, I’ll share my writing here again.

I trust that you will continue to be a positive seeking girl. I hope that you will come and visit me at Creating Contentment if you need some more inspiration, but Kooklah is on her own wellbeing journey and can also give you motivation and guidance to become the positive seeking girls you want to be. And you can be! I promise. It just takes a little bit of work, and a whole lot of practice. I speak from experience.

So, smile cause you’re beautiful. You just need to believe it.

Thank you for letting me into your space and reading my words. It has been such a pleasure. I have loved this experience. Writing here has helped me grow and learn. I will always be grateful.

So, goodbye. Take care.

And remember if you want to stay in touch, there are many ways to contact me. xS


Thankyou to Sarah for this open and honest post, your lovely words will be missed. I wish your own blog well, and look forward to clicking over to read your future posts. KOOKLAH xo

Five Destinations to Explore

As my plans are coming together for my USA trip at the end of the year I have started thinking about other trips and destinations I would like to experience. While there are many, I thought I would share five in this post {with more to come in further posts}…

Mexican Ruins
They have captured my interest for a few years and I am excited that during my stay in Cancun next year, I will have the chance to go and visit some. I am particularly keen to visit the site called Chichen Itza which has ruins from 7th and 10th Century that include stone structures with carvings, areas used to worship and an underwater sinkhole which was a traditional ceremonial site.


The ruins of Tulum along the Riviera Maya are also intriguing,  they are the only ruins built in a way that gives them ocean views. It is so pretty, and literally takes my breath away…


Juliet’s Balcony – Verona, Italy
The balcony and house that is said to have inspired William Shakespeare to write Romeo & Juliet can be found in the Italian city of Verona at Casa di Giulietta. I have a big interest in Italy and love the whimsical aspect of this site, I will definitely be writing a letter to Juliet! Even if it isn’t real, something that so openly celebrates love, will always win in my book.


Santorini – Greece
What’s not to love and have extreme wanderlust over? Santorini – an island formed from a volcanic caldera, this southern Greek island is an iconic image of Greece. Sun, beaches, volcano and white-washed buildings paired with colourful roofs or details (traditionally different volcanic ash was used to create this) that cascade down the cliff. Love that one of my favourite book series “The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants”, has an amazing affinity to Santorini – adds to the magic!


Uluru, Ayers Rock – Australia
A sandstone rock in Australia’s centre – the largest of its kind at 350m high – holds a special significance to the Aboriginal culture. I find it fascinating that at different times of the day, as the sun changes position the rock appears to change colour – including amber, purple and blue. According to Lonely Planet, two thirds of Uluru is below ground and it would take three and a half hours to walk around!


La Sagrada Familia, Barcelona – Spain
Basilica, church, cathedral – whichever term you use, there is no denying that this is an amazing man-made creation. I love ornate architecture,  particuarly cathedrals, and this one is designed to a medieval theme. Interestingly the building of it is not finished,  it is expected to be completed by 2026. Mainly gothic style with three facades that face different directions which depict different scenes including Birth of Jesus and Heaven & Hell. At La Sagrada Familia – it is apparently not uncommon for the entry queue to be over a two hour wait.


I hope you enjoy this post! I look forward to putting together more in the future… have you been to these destinations or are they on YOUR list? What other destinations are your must-sees? KOOKLAH Xo


Food for Thought

Two Days, two Gal-Pal dinner dates.

Last night I went out with a friend for a long overdue catch up, we went for dinner and to talk gossip. Our night started with sharing some dishes (tapas style) at 5 Sawyers in Newcastle’s Darby St – a brilliant hotspot for dining. I hadn’t been to 5 Sawyers before, it was cosy and eclectic with a story/history on display on one wall – complete with pictures, and the tagline of ‘A bar with food…’


For twenty dollars each we enjoyed chips cooked in some kind of chilli rub with aioli, some tomato bruschetta bread and soft tacos with guacamole, garlic paste, salad and beautiful slow cooked lamb.
The staff were friendly, attentive and the food amazing! Will definitely go back for those tacos again soon…

To end the night we went across the street to Coco Monde for dessert, after pondering the tantalising menu we both settled on an American style chocolate fudge brownie. Rich, decadent and tasty! Came to the table with a twill stick that was completely chocolate,  ice cream and drizzled melted chocolate all over the plate.


Can definitely recommend the brownie… I am interested in trying out the main meals also, and maybe another dessert!

Then tonight for dinner date number two, I went out into Maitland with three gorgeous work friends for a relaxed catch up. We spent the night at Fratelli Roma – a gorgeous Italian restaurant.
After sharing an antipasto plate (which I enjoyed with a glass of shiraz) we made our way through the mains.  At Fratelli, the pasta is hand-made, in house. They have incredible seafood. Tonight I enjoyed two aranchini balls and an entree size of calamari – which is lightly crumbed and deliciously salty.

Our mains were followed by sharing multiple desserts which included creme brulee, pannacotta, passionfruit tart and tiramisu.


This restaurant has soft lining, upholstered walls with wooden details and is an affordable yet fancy place to eat – great for a treat with friends or for a romantic date.

Have you tried any of these places? Do you have any suggestions of places to try. Hope you’ve enjoyed the food musings from a self-confessed ‘foodie’.

Kooklah xo