Wednesday, 31 December 2014

Wishes for 2015



I have never stuck to a New Years Resolution in my life so I'm hoping that if I throw enough wishes down onto a page then hopefully some of them will maybe stick. So in 2015 I want to...


  • Travel - in the UK/ abroad - I just want to see more of the world
  • Spend more time blogging ... and less time worrying about the stats and page view
  • Spend less time worrying in general
  • Complete my first module of my degree
  • Spend more time cooking ... and share some of the recipes on here
  • Try something new - yes very vague but something new
  • Spend more time with friends
  • Manage the chimp (I will explain all very soon)
  • Put myself out there
  • Have more fun
  • Be more organised - with blogging/ with work/ with my degree/ at home/ with money
  • Speaking of money - save some money - I'd like to save a minimum of £1000
  • Go on a date
  • Take more pictures ... and share them
I'm excited to get started... bring on 2015!!

What are your wishes for 2015?

Tuesday, 30 December 2014

2014 - A Recap


While this year has been a little quiet on the blog front due to my lack of commitment, however this year has been pretty busy.

I moved out!! Me any my friend decided that it was time to move out and within three weeks of viewing this house we had the keys. It was the only house we viewed and it just felt right (you can view all my posts about moving out here)

My role at work completely changed. I got offered the position to take over a department at work from a woman who was leaving on maternity leave. It's now been nearly 6 months since I made the decision to go with it and 99% of the time I am pretty glad I made it. Here's hoping that 2015 holds lots of new opportunities too.

I wish I had taken more pictures of the places I have been this year so I could share them with you but I'm pretty rubbish at remembering to take my camera and my phone generally stays in my handbag! However this year I have been to...

- Paris. I took my sister to Paris for her 21st birthday. We went via the Eurostar and we were there for 3 days. We didn't go up the Eiffel tower (even though I purchased the tickets, I had a panic about going up so wasted the money like an idiot) but we did go to a Moulin Rouge performance which was honestly one of the best things I have ever seen.

- Center Parcs, Elveden. As this is relatively close to home we often go here as a family. It's great for the kids and adults a like and we had a lovely family holiday including lots of swimming, eating, drinking and playing. 

- Colchester Zoo. I love a zoo so I am amazed that I haven't been here sooner but in June me and my sister went. She packed the most amazing picnic and I drove which I think is a very fair trade. I saw my new favourite animal ever since I watched a documentary regarding them, the pygmy hippo and we fed a giraffe. It was crazily hot & sunny and we were really lucky.

- Sheffield & Leeds. I went to watch cricket with my best friend in Leeds. I actually really enjoyed it and even started to understand what was going on. Maybe cricket will be my sport of choice as my attempt to get into football this year failed before it even started as I didn't want to pick a team. I also drove all the way there and back, the longest I have ever driven, it was fine but my best friend din't warn me that I would have to drive straight on one road for 90 miles... in hindsight I'm glad he didn't!

- London. I wish I went to London more often as every time I go I absolutely adore it but this year I only went twice and we went for my sister's 21st both times. Once was the day before we went to Paris and I booked for us to go to the Duck & Waffle. The cocktails were amazing and amazingly strong and the views were astonishing. The other time we went to the Tate Modern and had afternoon tea at the Ritz. Finger sandwiches and art, I am so refined!

I also finished my Open University intro course and applied to start my full degree in January 2015. You can read my post about it here

I also started writing a book this year which I hope to develop more in 2015

So all in all a relatively busy 2014 and hopefully an even better 2015 (with more blog posts!)


Wednesday, 24 December 2014

Moving In - The Not So Practicalities



This time two weeks ago I moved in to my new place and my last post was about the practical side of moving in but moving out of your family home for the first time is not really about being practical. It's more about the crazy raft of emotions and thoughts that follow. It all still feels very surreal, the fact that it's been two weeks since I have even stepped foot in my old room just doesn't seem to compute. 

I have only ever lived in two other places my whole life, both of them on the same site, one of them the caravan when I was born and then when the bungalow was built that was it. It's getting used to the stairs as I've always lived on a single level, getting used to the cabinet in the kitchen that you have to open & close the doors in a certain order, having carpet in my bedroom rather than laminate, showering in a cubicle rather than a bath. And they are all so little that you wouldn't even think you would notice them. I still have all the same bedroom furniture, the same ornaments and trinkets and yet they look so different. And those little things do matter

When people ask how it is I don't know what to say. I say amazing, great, fun, strange, quiet... and it's all those things and more. There are so many things about living with someone who aren't your family that I hadn't even considered before. My room mate is one of my best friends so to be honest in some ways it is probably easier than a stranger because we know each other. She knows that I am fussy about food and get moody after a long day at work. But then we also have more to lose, you can't fall out over things like who last washed up or stupid inconsequential things like that because what is that in comparison to a friendship. 

Also to note that on the practical side of things I kind of didn't follow my own advice. I took no pictures - just bundled everything in - still haven't taken a picture in this place! And I just crawled into an unmade bed that has some clothes I need to put away on the end of it! Do as I say people not as I do.

Saturday, 13 December 2014

Moving In - The Practicalities



When you move in make sure you have a detailed inventory that you agree with. If one isn't supplied do one and give it to your landlord/rental provider and make sure they agree. This way you won't be paying for any damage that was there when you arrived.

Take pictures throughout the property - this proves how you received the property and that you left it the way you got it. Pictures don't lie (OK I know that they can lie but in this case pictures don't lie!!)

Make sure you have contents insurance - if anything goes wrong then this will be your life line.

Make sure your furniture fits - so far I have held off ordering a new sofa as I'm not sure what will fit up the stairs. At the moment I'm still not sure if some of my furniture will fit into my bedroom but as I already had it and I'm moving out of my parents house, literally 10 minutes down the road, I don't need to panic about this too much. If it really doesn't fit then it will just have to come back.

Take meter readings - work out how to take meter readings

Pack essentials like toilet roll, tea, coffee etc. separately. Also pack some clothes & pyjamas away from your main clothes as honestly the last thing you want to do when you move is unpack all of your clothes and put them in your wardrobe.

Check that the sink is properly connected and when you empty the water from the sink at 10pm that water doesn't pour all into the cupboard under the sink, the floor and pretty much everywhere because yeah that's pretty annoying and you will swear.

Start as you mean to go on - make your bed, wash up, put things away. Be a grown up

Any tips you have for moving in?


Wednesday, 10 December 2014

Festive Snacks - Cheese & Chutney Toasted Sandwich

One of my local pubs do a fantastic carvery and the lady that does all the cooking is a sides wizard - yeah the meat and the potatoes are good but the pastry plaits, cauliflower cheese and cheesy bread & butter puddings are honestly divine. 
One of the amazing plaits she does is a cheese & chutney plait which is delicious but I suck at pastry and I need instant gratification on a cold afternoon filled with packing so the cheese & chutney toasted sandwich was born!



Super simple... 4 ingredients 

Bread 
Mature Cheddar Cheese
Chutney (I used a caramelized onion chutney from the jar but feel free to experiment)
Margarine/butter

I used a sandwich toaster as we have one at home but if you don't then this would work just as well in a frying or griddle pan, it just takes a little longer and requires a little more skill. Butter the bread, grate the cheese, put the bread butter side down, sprinkle the cheese, spoon in the chutney (don't be greedy!) and toast. Then ram it in your face while trying to not burn your face with hot melted cheese!!


Moving Out - The Prep

A few weeks ago me and my best friend made the decision that we were moving in together(and you can read the post out about that decision here) and now the week has finally come where we actually make the big move. She has moved away from home before as she went to uni but this will be the first time I have lived anywhere else other than home so yeah you could say I have no idea what I am doing! So if this is your first time moving out then read on and hopefully I can help (and if this isn't then please continue to read on for my naivety)




Packing


It's amazing how much stuff I have! I only have one smallish room at home but seem to have enough clothes to start my own clothes store and enough books to start a library (although these would tend towards the chunkier lady and crime books and I am not willing to part with any of them so a pretty awful shop if I am honest) I am pretty lucky that I am moving from my parents so don't have to be out by a set date but I do have to empty all my furniture so that it can be moved as moving a solid wood wardrobe full of clothes & books would require the services of the Hulk. 
I decided to get all my packing requirements from Big Yellow Self Storage. They had packs of boxes put together with bubble wrap and tape which gave you a discount if you were going to buy them separately and I thought was reasonable value (although this is the first time I have ever brought a box so I'm probably not the best judge!) I have wrapped everything in bubble wrap that I even think might break and I'm pretty convinced I will break something because I'm a klutz!
I think the main idea behind good packing is to pack your rooms in separate boxes but as my friend won't let me help her pack her shopping because I just throw everything in, I have followed this idea loosely. As the house I am moving into is quite little I don't think it is going to matter that much but will let you know when I try to unpack

Grown Up Stuff

This includes to me stuff that I don't normally think about - bills, budgeting, insurance, tv licenses and probably a million other things I haven't even thought of yet. Council tax, water meters and stairs are all a foreign feature to me. The only thing I have managed to sort so far is the contents insurance which is all set up relatively pain free so fingers crossed for everything else being as simple.

The Essentials

I've been slowly building up my bottom drawer for a year or so now and I thought I had accumulated a reasonable amount of items but until you actually write down what you need you don't realise how much stuff you actually need in a house ... and how much it costs!! However there are essentials and then there are ESSENTIALS!! Potentially the Laura Ashley cushion I brought yesterday on my essentials shopping trip may not be considered an essential by some but it was blue and pretty and 30% off so pretty essential to me! Buying of toilet cleaner, dish cloths and peelers wasn't as fun as cushion shopping but still essential. As my dad is helping me move the main essential is tea making facilities as I will be left by myself if I don't provide this. It's a good idea to make sure stuff you will need access to is actually accessible to you and not packed at the bottom of a box that you really cannot be bothered to unpack. Also REMEMBER TOILET ROLL!


Panic Stations

Yes I am panicking a little bit but that's ok. Panic means you care but if you are panicking too much then just step back. My panic happened about twenty minutes ago when I had filled two suitcases with clothes and still have a nearly full wardrobe to pack away. Instead of having a meltdown I stopped took a breath logged onto my blog and put it all into some perspective. To start with I think I majorly underestimated the amount of time it would take mainly due to the fact I have majorly underestimated the amount of stuff I own so it's a good idea to give yourself more time than you thought you would need.

In 24 hours time I will have started the big time so wish me luck and any last minute tips are gratefully received!! 


Sunday, 7 December 2014

Read This

If you read anything today let it be this. I struggle sometimes and feel like my world is falling in around me and then you read purely tragic stories like this and you realise that yeah it's actually all ok for me, there are people out there who have it much worse than me. And I know that just because people have it worse than you that doesn't mean that you can't struggle, it just puts it into perspective a little.

And yeah it will probably make you cry as it did me but sometimes tears are good.

So all my thoughts with Nora and her family

Saturday, 6 December 2014

Reasons I Love Winter



Yesterday's post was all about my negativity towards winter but hopefully you will find some more positivity in today's post!!

- Sitting in bed in my duvet wearing my Christmas jumper and watching family movies like Harry Potter and eating chocolate just make the trauma of Christmas shopping this morning all seem so far away. Things like this are only acceptable (or even comfortable in Winter)

- The weathermen seem adamant that we will get snow this year and I hope they are right (as long as I don't have to drive anywhere). Snowmen and snow angels all sound like a fantastic idea and the warming hot chocolate that follows is always appreciated. 

- CHRISTMAS!!! I love Christmas. Secret Santa, Christmas trees, presents, fairy lights and Christmas dinner just all sound positively perfect.

- Winter fashion is honestly the best. As what I would call a woman on the chunkier side of slim summer can literally be torture. I have enough insulating fat to keep me warm and it's apparently socially unacceptable for a fat woman to wear a skirt or dress without tights! In the winter I can wear leggings and jumpers to my hearts content and boots ... I love boots!! Christmas jumpers and sequins also become acceptable and what could be better about that??

- Stews, mash, apple crumble are all only acceptable to eat in the winter, summer food is all about the salad and yeah who wants a salad?!? 

- Going to bed at 9pm is acceptable as it's dark outside and sometimes I just need to hibernate. I wish I was a bear (and if I was a bear I wouldn't have to shave my legs - which is also possible when tights, leggings & trousers are the order of the day)

Friday, 5 December 2014

Reasons I Hate Winter



- Go to work - it's dark, get home from work - it's dark. Where the hell has all my daylight gone? I live in Suffolk not the Arctic Circle but yesterday it didn't even get light, just the day got slowly more grey. It's depressing.

- I hate being cold and I hate being warm due to artificial heat from radiators and heaters. It makes me feel sick and sleepy.

- I wish I had a wardrobe full of sophisticated winter clothes but all I really have are comfy leggings and jumpers that are even close to being suitable to wear when it's nearly freezing outside. However I'm not sure this is particularly suitable for everyday office attire (not that this stops me!). Also jumpers do nothing to make me look slim, jumpers are all about bulk which is not really my friend

- Winter makes me need carbs, like an actual addiction, which does not help with the aforementioned bulk. Also Costa has the Black Forest hot chocolate which is actually amazing and has about a million calories per sip.

- As soon as the ice warning comes up in my car, I panic. I have crashed two cars in the same spot when it's been icy and it's not something I wish to repeat. Luckily the "crashes" have been pretty minor but finding yourself on the opposite side of the road facing the wrong way in a hedge will never be my idea of fun. (Although my car no longer says "warning ice" it says it in Portuguese next to the time that is 3 hours and 3 years in the future!)

- Time seems to literally speed up in December. It seems like minutes ago that November started and now we are twenty days away from Christmas and I don't even remember it happening. Also December is a super expensive month (especially this year with the deposits and everything!)

- I hate crowds, they make me tense and shopping in December is just torture for me. So I am not entirely looking forward to shopping tomorrow, but I need boxes to pack my stuff so I must face the city!

There are many reasons to love Winter too. One of them is blogging in bed with a bar of Galaxy Caramel and the cat curled up next to me.

Monday, 1 December 2014

Homemade Advent Calander

I know I'm too late this year for you to make your own Advent calender but I couldn't write about it until I had unveiled it to my sister and I obviously still can't go too much into what is inside it as I don't want to spoil the surprise but this year me and my sister decided to make each other Advent calenders.

There are lots of different ways that you can display the gifts you get but this is the way I decided to display mine.




To make you will need:
24 small gifts - we agreed to try & keep relatively cheap so it's a mixture of childish cheap fun stuff and slightly more expensive little gifts
Coloured string
Ribbon
Brown Paper
Luggage Tags - got mine from W H Smith 
Gold push pins (found in the random stuff drawer in our kitchen)
Black Biro (I attempted different more expensive pens but these didn't work with the coating on the tags or dried out extremely quickly - biro is your cheapest most reliable friend)
Large corkboard (I recently got mine from Amazon for under £10 and will put it back to it's original use once we have finished)

I decided to wrap some presents and keep some presents visible. This was mainly due to the fact that some of the presents would be insanely difficult to wrap and also I like the look of some of the presents being on show especially the pretty bird. I decided to keep a common theme of the snowflakes on all the presents and the tags and a mixture of using the written number and the numerical form to look a bit more interesting too.

I honestly had no idea how difficult buying 24 little gifts would be. When we first decided on the idea it seemed like the simplest thing ever but things are so expensive that it was hard to get decent gifts that didn't cost the earth. Also as a relatively uncrafty person the writing of the tags literally took me a millennium but I am happy with them (these are attempt number two though!!)

What do you think about my advent calender idea? Have you ever made one?

What I'm Going to Miss About Home

I move out in less than two weeks and I'm excited and nervous and this all still seems rather surreal. Since the decision was made moving out date has come round incredibly fast and I still don't feel even close to being prepared or having the stuff sorted that I need! So instead of packing or sorting contents insurance I have decided to write a post about what I'm going to miss about home.

- That clean washing sometimes just wonderfully turns up in my room all folded & neat (unfortunately it never puts itself away in my wardrobe so there it stays for quite a while!!)

- Being woken up with meows & a cold nose in the morning (the new house doesn't have a garden & Felix will never be an inside cat). Also not being able to move my legs during the night so not to disturb him and not being able to walk anywhere without getting tripped up.




- Seeing my siblings nearly every day, hearing about their day, being there on the morning of their birthdays, the little things. 

- Eating said siblings left over pizza because you know that food that is leftover has no calories and obviously that is how I keep my svelte figure

- Having my Dad here to fix things, know how to sort things & just watching him sleeping on the sofa with his favourite dog. Also I would miss things like this artistic piece. It's a contender for next year's Turner Prize.




- Mumma Hen cooking dinner - it's pretty good when you can't be arsed to even think of what to eat let along cook it after working for 11 hours. Also when the food tastes crap the only person I will have to blame is myself

- That when my siblings get brought chocolate then so do I. I have a perfectly good Twirl in my bag, my Mum brought me a Flake and my sister got me some bloody fantastic cocoa fudge from Hotel Chocolat

I wish this was all I am going to miss but you have to grow up sometime and now is my time. What did you miss most when you moved out from home?


Tuesday, 25 November 2014

Moving Out - The Decision

So I finally made the big decision and with my best friend we have decided to move out and rent a little place of our own. You have no idea how hard it is to find rental properties until you start looking for them. I mean maybe you would have more luck if you were looking in the big towns & cities but when it's deep dark Suffolk affordable rental properties are very few and far between. 

Every place we looked at online was either extortionately expensive or looked like it had last been redecorated about 40 years ago and since then had had a dirty sweaty man rolling about the place who hadn't heard of deodorant or a vacuum cleaner or unfortunately both. Also more money out here just means more bedrooms or more acres not anything more modern, cleaner, sturdy kitchen cabinets or a white bathroom suite!

I'm also blaming Pinterest because this board has given me a totally unrealistic expectation of what my house should look like!



 My perfect house seems to be white with lots of natural light, wood and antique tiles and a kitchen that's the size of a small town. And while I am not completely willing to give up on the dream of a Pinterest worthy house I have to admit that it's probably not going to happen in my first place unless I win the lottery (which I don't even enter!)

We both spent a lot of time on Rightmove & Zoopla. I have no idea how people found houses before the internet but if I had had to sit in an estate agents and view all the pictures of the places I have viewed from the comfort of my bed I think I would have gone on a crazy rampage! 

I think a lot of finding the perfect place is a mixture of luck & compromise. It's seeing the right pictures at the right time. Good properties go so quick around here and properties that look like my Pinterest board are actually non existent. To be honest looking felt a little like a game, it felt unreal but we have found a place and are looking at putting the deposit down.

So yeah I am scared, I'm nervous and I'm really excited but the decision has been made - I'm moving out!!

Friday, 21 November 2014

Open University - Access Module

I started an Open University Access Module in February this year and just got my results back and I'm really pleased to say that I passed. I was one mark off a distinction (one bloomin' mark!!) and I am now looking at starting a degree in English Literature & History in February 2015.

I did the course with the Access to Success route. If you don't have a degree and are earning under £25,000 (well have a household income of less than £25,000) then you can enroll onto the Access to Success course and you get a massive discount on both the Access Module and the first module of your degree. I had been looking at enrolling into a degree for some time, I decided not to go to university for a million different reasons when I finished my A Levels and I regretted it. I wanted a degree, at the moment it's not really for anything career based but more to do with the fact that I want this for me. I want to say I did it and doing the Access course was my first step towards this. If you are considering a degree using the Access to Success route then hopefully I can give you some of the pros and cons in helping you make the big decision...

PROS

The massive cost saving - if you can the Access to Success route saves you a shed load of cash. The access module is a tiny £25 in comparison to the usual cost of £625 if you wanted to do the access module without the Access to Success option and the you only have to contribute £1000 to your first module instead of the usual £2632 it would usually cost. You can even get a student loan to finance the £1000 which I am now in the process of applying for. 

Confidence building - Open University learning is done as a mixture of online learning with phone tutorials and course materials supplied and is a pretty unique way of doing a degree. When looking at doing the degree with the Open University I was pretty worried about the way I would get on with this but Access gives you the intro into this style, builds your confidence and skills in online learning at a really low risk stage.

Low Risk - I'm a worrier but with the first module you aren't tied into anything. You don't have to complete the second part of the Access to Success route and if you absolutely hate it well you have only lost £25

CONS

For me it was a little too easy at times. You have no minimum requirements to enter the Access module and it is designed a lot for people who struggle with English or English is their second language. A lot of the early stuff was very simple, stuff I had completed at high school and I had already gone past that when I did my A Levels, so sometimes I found it a little bit dull. Also each task had a suggested amount of time that it would take and for me I found this was a massive exaggeration and to start off with I thought I must be doing something wrong! 

Limited topic area- I am looking at doing a degree in History & English Literature but there are only a certain number of Access modules that are designed to cater to a large number of degrees so if you were looking at doing English, Art, Religious Studies, History etc. the Access course I took would be the one for you to do so if you hated History you would still have to do the part on this. I'm not a huge fan of Art and the final essay (and the only part your final grade was based on) was on art which I really had to push myself to complete. 

Self motivation - if you aren't self motivated then an Open University degree isn't for you but then if you aren't self motivated maybe a degree in general isn't really for you.

All in all I would recommend it. It took a lot of time and I found it hard to keep motivated at times especially when work was tough or the subject was not to my taste but I think this has prepared me well for what is to come. Obviously the degree is going to be harder but I'm really glad I completed it. Learning online was completely alien to me and I think if I had to do the more difficult tasks and get my head around this part it would have been much more of a task. I am now in the process of applying for the second part so will let you know how I get on but I'm excited and nervous (and not looking forward to dealing with Student Finance!)

If you have any questions about my experience then drop me a comment and if you are interested in finding out more then visit the website here:  (http://www.open.ac.uk/courses/do-it/access)


Sunday, 16 November 2014

Blogging Hiatus - Why I am Back

It seems I can't stay away from this little space on the internet of mine. It's been nearly five months since I last posted and to be honest I thought I had pretty much given up on the idea of blogging (and if you look through my blog you will find a few posts about coming back!). 

And to be honest there were a million reasons as to why I gave up, I had no idea what to post about, my blog was nowhere near as good as I wanted it to be, it didn't look right, didn't sound right, the pictures were crap, I had blog envy, blog fatigue, every blogger cliche under the sun. The thing is I work too much, watch too much television and I'm pretty boring. I don't have amazing fashion sense, I can't put a full face of makeup on without stressing, I brush my hair like three times a week. I hardly ever cook, I don't make things and I am a tiny bit of a disaster. I spend a lot of time wondering where I am going in life, what the hell am I doing and feeling a little bit alone in this thought. 
Alone is not a fun feeling to have so that is in part why I am sitting here writing this post - my comeback post - hopefully in an effort to make at least one person feel a little less alone in this big crazy world. 

The other reason is I love it here. I love the fact that people I may not know are potentially sitting in their bed in a Sunday night reading my struggles, my advice, my thoughts, my crazy in the same way that I enjoy sharing that little bit of life with the people who's blogs I read. Simple Chronicles of Me had become something that I didn't enjoy anymore. I was spending more time thinking about posts that would get me more readers, page views, followers than writing about things that I found enjoyable. I was trying to get the perfect formula and every post sound a little less like me and became a little bit less enjoyable. 

There's also a tiny bit of the fact that I love the sound of my own voice (in a figurative sense - I actually hate the sound of my own voice, I wish it sounded how it sounds in my head because I sound sophisticated and grown up, in reality I sound high pitched and a little silly I think). 

So here I am back again - for a little bit longer than usual I hope - I have some ideas and I want to get them out onto the page. So stick around please and wish me luck!



Saturday, 21 June 2014

How to Get Rid of Dandruff Naturally


I have had a very dry itchy scalp recently caused by a small cut and no matter how many times I tried anti dandruff shampoo it really wasn't working and the problem was spreading! So I started looking online for other treatments and found a lot of different methods and found that the below worked for me and hopefully it will work for you...

You will need:
Comb or hard bristled brush
Olive oil
Clingfilm
Microwaveable Mug
Spray Bottle (I got mine from Boots for £1.55)
White Vinegar (I used White Wine as this is what I had but many websites recommended Apple Cider Vinegar)


1. Put olive oil in a mug and microwave for about 30 seconds. The amount you need will depend upon the length of your hair but for my hair which is mid length and quite thick I used approx quarter of a mug.

2. Section hair and brush into roots and through the length of the hair. You will look like a 90's boy band member but it's really worth it! Massage oil into hair and once all damp, wrap head in a crazy clingfilm turban. This is so it doesn't dry out. You will look silly but the little kids didn't even bat an eyelid! Leave for 10-15 mins.

3. While waiting mix your vinegar mix. I used approximately 6 parts water to 1 part vinegar and this worked for me but you might need to experiment with this. I coloured my hair about six months ago and I do feel this did alter the colour slightly. Not by much but if this is something you are worried about then I wouldn't recommend this bit.

4. Once your time is up wash with normal shampoo. My favourite is the Aussie Miracles Daily Shampoo as it doesn't create build up. You may need to wash twice and be very careful that you don't slip in the shower!

5. Once shampoo rinsed spray hair with vinegar mix. You can either rinse this off (which I prefer) or you can leave on (which can leave your hair smelling of vinegar). You don't need to condition and the vinegar mix is an excellent detangler.

I use this method every couple of weeks and it really works for me. Let me know if you decide to try this method and how you get on.


Monday, 16 June 2014

Weekly Wishes #6


LAST WEEK'S WISHES

Ok so maybe technically not last week's wishes as I had an unplanned blogging hiatus. I had a lot I need to get back on track including submitting my essay, work, the gym and friends including celebrating a new job and spending time with my sister but if I had of wished last week to sort the above would definitely have been top of my list.
1. I went to the gym and upped the difficulty of what I was doing thanks to my new gym buddy. I started the Couch to 5k challenge and honestly found the first week one of the most difficult things I have done.
2. I watched the first two episodes of Season Two of Game of Thrones and there were a lot of new characters introduced - confused!
3. I made these Rhubarb & Ginger scones which were lovely (must cut ginger into smaller pieces next time)

THIS WEEK'S WISHES

1. Read some blogs - As my blog has suffered so has reading the, This week I aim to read, comment and write another BLOG LOVE entry (and if you have any posts/blogs to recommend - including you own! - then send me the links)

2. Keep a food diary - I want to keep track of what goes in my mouth (so hopefully less goes into it!)

3. Have a smoothie three times - I don't eat enough fruit, hopefully this wish will help.


Sunday, 15 June 2014

Book Review - I am Pilgrim - Terry Hayes

"Can you commit the perfect crime?
Pilgrim is the codename for a man who doesn't exist. The adopted son of a wealthy American family, he once headed up a secret espionage unit for US intelligence. Before he disappeared into anonymous retirement, he wrote the definitive book on forensic criminal investigation.
But that book will come back to haunt him. It will help NYPD detective Ben Bradley track him down. And it will take him to a rundown New York hotel room where the body of a woman is found facedown in a bath of acid, her features erased, her teeth missing, her fingerprints gone. It is a textbook murder - and Pilgrim wrote the book.
What begins as an unusual and challenging investigation will become a terrifying race-against-time to save America from oblivion. Pilgrim will have to make a journey from a public beheading in Mecca to a deserted ruins on the Turkish coast via a Nazi death camp in Alsace and the barren wilderness of the Hindu Kush in search of the faceless man who would commit an appalling act of mass murder in the name of his God."

This is the book that broke my reading hiatus and I had tried lots of different books. 12 Years a Slave, Labyrinth, The Kill Room, In the Blood were all discarded as unreadable at the moment but this book I really enjoyed. It was one of easy action thrillers, never a literary classic but a good read all the same.

What makes it most interesting, which I guess is the case for with most books, are the characters. Ben Bradley is your typical New York cop who turns out to not be so typical and your terrorist is everything you think he should be and also everything you think he shouldn't. In a world of secret espionage it is difficult to tell the good men from the bad. This books made me consider the ideas behind terrorism and whether all terrorists are inherently "bad people" or does something cause people to become a terrorist? This book would definitely suggest the latter.

While the story begins as a simple murder mystery this book travels the globe through terrorism, secrecy and politics and brings you to the edge of your seat.

Tuesday, 3 June 2014

The Friendzone

I read on the internet recently that apparently the worst thing a girl can say when asked if she is with a guy and they aren't an item is to say no. Even if you aren't together, have never been together and have no intention of being together you should always say yes.

I think this is ridiculous!! One of my best friends is a guy, we have been friends since I was thirteen and if I said we were together he would laugh in my face. His lovely girlfriend might also have something to say about our imaginary relationship. He is the person I speak to on the phone most often, he is the person that makes me laugh when I need it most but that doesn't mean we need to be in a relationship together. He is not interested in me and I am not interested in him. 

The friendzone is a load of crap if you ask me. It's an excuse made up by people who are too afraid to tell the person they are interested in what they truly want. And do you know how annoying it is to here you complain about why X, Y or Z doesn't like you? Because you are obviously such an amazing catch if you can't even tell the person that you are supposedly meant to be best of friends that you are interested in them and I don't mean just finding them attractive!


So yes my best friend is a guy and neither of us are in the friendzone. Do you think members of the opposite sex can be just friends?



But if you want to escape the friendzone this article will not help you but it may make you laugh


Monday, 2 June 2014

Weekly Wishes #5



I'm a little bit late today as for once I have a life. My best friend has a job interview tomorrow so a pep talk is in order!

LAST WEEK'S WISHES

1. Go to the gym three times - Three times? How about zero times? Big fat fail!

2. Get back on track with my Open University course - I am still a bit behind but after spending Wednesday, Thursday and Sunday evening and all day Saturday beavering my way through my text book I am pretty much all the way through Chartism.

3. Pick a book and stick with it - I have a book and will be reviewing in the next couple of weeks. I like it.

THIS WEEK'S WISHES

1. Go to the gym - OK so a bit of a downsize wish from last week but you shouldn't run before you walk so I need to get to the gym!

2. Start Game of Thrones Season Two - A wish I am looking forward to. 

3. Do some baking - I have so many recipes on Pinterest and I really would like to make some of them - and yeah cake!


Saturday, 31 May 2014

9 Reasons I'm a Nightmare

1. I am on a diet but there was a fair in town so instead of having any willpower I consumed approximately 9 million calories in candyfloss. As a child your parents don't buy you candyfloss but with an adult with my own money I thought it was a good idea. An afternoon at a computer at work proved this was a bad idea, a really bad idea.

2. At the age of 22 I got told off for swearing too much. Being told off for swearing when you are 15 is pretty funny, seven yeas later it feels even funnier but its even more inappropriate to laugh.


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3. Playing "Snog, Marry, F*$k, Dessert Island" and picking the person with the most money to marry is probably a dickish move but hey a girl has needs! And they include shoes.

4. Today I purchased a newspaper for the first time, it was for the sole purpose of papier mache. 

5. I haven't brushed my hair today or actually even taken it down since last night. I also have the remnants of last nights carefully crafted cats eye eyeliner as a kind of poor girl's smoky eye .

6. Aforementioned eyeliner was already smudged down my face - my best friend said cum last night and I laughed so much I cried - I'm mature. He also doesn't know where his own mouth finishes when he threw his drink down himself - I laughed more. I can tell you this because he doesn't read this unless I tell him I have posted about him and for once I am going to keep quiet. (Although I could turn this post very easily into 9 reasons he is a nightmare!)



7. Instead of doing more uni work before my tutorial on Thursday (which I initially though was on Wednesday so didn't go to the gym) to be prepared, I cooked fish fingers and watched Springwatch. I then forgot about said fish fingers while I had this tutorial and burnt them.

8. I cooked a chicken last week and didn't close the oven door properly. Chicken was mildly warm after nearly 2 hours, if dead chickens have feelings this one would have felt like it was sunning itself in Great Yarmouth.

9. Instead of doing uni work now I am writing this post... NIGHTMARE!!



Tuesday, 27 May 2014

Internet Things




This video from Lily @ Lily Pebbles about her Milan outfits - how she is this put together I have no idea but I love her outfits and love her editing. Ideas noted for future vlog maybe?!?

These words - I'm not ready to be a mum but when I am I hope I have as much lovely things to say as this blog

So glad my parents aren't this inept at texting but give them a computer and that's a whole different ball game. Watching my mum on my iPad is almost painful - sorry Mum!

This map states that I am "inbred" and "too find of tractors" - well cheers Buzzfeed - what's your home town's stereotype?

This woman getting her groove on - this makes me laugh - thanks to my so called best friend for saying that this is me in a few years time and thanks for calling me esoteric - look it up - he's not being nice.

This workout - I only managed four repetitions the first time and spent most of my time pacing trying not to vomit but pacing still burns calories right? And yes I have noticed her boobs are really out!

This post is beyond cute - and I'm a little jealous - love me someone please?

If I get to be this creative when I am a parent sign me up.

OK so I was googling my own blog posts because yeah I am a loser and I came across this really interesting post. I always used to think people were judging me at the gym but I think you really just get on with it!

Brits did you know this was thing? I don't believe it

And finally, this!

What are you loving on your little corner of the internet?

Monday, 26 May 2014

Weekly Wishes #4



LAST WEEK'S WISHES

1. Enjoy my Saturday - What could be more enjoyable than stuffing my face with cake will having a gossip with one of my besties and exchanging smiles with her little boy? The weather was rather changeable on Saturday so no walks for me but there is always today! Although massive heavy DIY is happening at mine at the moment so I am on cooking duty.

2. Update my Blog Love - Instead of having list of blogs I love which I don't think would be very interesting I decided to catalogue together all my posts about blogs/blog posts I really enjoy reading. Currently it's still a bit empty but I have some posts planned so if you are looking for new things to read definitely check out here

P.S I used this really great tutorial on how to do this but if you need any help at all then please ask! I also managed to get the whole gif thing working which explains this post.

3. Clean my car - Another big check on this one. I found a ridiculous amount of glitter and my own hair in my boot, maybe I was kidnapped by Kesha?

THIS WEEK'S WISHES

1. Go to the gym three times - My good friend gym got put to one side this week. Working 11 hour days is not conducive to wanting to work out but shoving my face with flapjacks and Chinese is! I still managed to lose weight this week but it was a miracle and to be honest I have missed it. Who am I?!?

2. Get back on track with my Open University course - Yeah I am blaming work again but I am maybe a couple of days behind where I should be on this. I have a tutorial on Wednesday so I need to have made a bit more of an effort.

3. Pick a book and stick with it - Started my fourth book yesterday and yeah that's pretty much a no go too. I started it a year or so ago and got a good half way through and gave up so yeah probably a book I am never destined to finish. Where are all the good books?!?!?


Sunday, 25 May 2014

Life Lately... - May

Currently...

Reading - Nothing! I currently have three books on the go but I can't get into any of them. I need suggestions people!

Watching - I am trying to get into Homeland which I have had recorded on my Sky box for absolutely ages and I was struggling a bit. It's one of those ones where you don't know who the good guy is and I don't really know how I feel about some of the characters. I really want to like it especially as I have heard such good things so I'm persevering (and watching it now!) I really like Carrie but I just can't get on with Jessica. And to be honest I am getting into it more.



Listening to - I heard this Jason Derulo song for the first time on the way to Giraffes on Thursday night and I couldn't really believe what I was hearing. It's one of those so crap it's good songs, I think? Maybe it's just crap! I'm really into listening to songs from my emo youth at the moment. They really destress me after a long day at work. Panic! at the Disco to me is like jazz for a normal person. A song that always get me through my more emotional stages is The Verve - Love is Noise. I did something I really regretted once and I listened to this song on repeat while I walked crying through the rain.




Loving - My new ability to cope with pressure. Pressure is something I struggle with dealing with sometimes. I have crazy expectations of myself sometimes but this past couple of weeks while looking after a colleague's work I haven't lost it at all.

Loathing - How tired I am. While I haven't lost it I have been working 11 hour days and I'm really glad its over.

Weight Loss - Since last month (the day I wrote my last Life Lately was the say before I started my new diet) I have last 5 and a half pounds. I'm still fat and I've had good and bad weeks. While I haven't lost it with the pressure I have shoved more than my fair amount of Nutella in my mouth.

Saturday, 24 May 2014

Dear New Person at Work

Dear New Person at Work,

I don't like you. No that's not true, I don't know you, but I don't like the idea of you. I don't like change, I don't like worrying that I am too in your face or intimidating or weird or inappropriate for other adults to like me.

I like knowing where I stand, are you my superior, inferior or equal? Will you look at me in disgust when I shove a Kinder Bueno in my face on a Friday afternoon? Will you judge me because I don't brush my hair everyday or wear makeup when I should? 

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Will you be better than me? Will people like you more? These all sound like such pathetic things to worry about but here I am worried. I'm not in high school anymore but to me office environments feel rather cliquey. It's like Mean Girls but all a bit more underhand because you have to be openly professional.

An office setting is a little bit like life in a fish bowl, you are on show, and you can't have a meltdown because your day has been f*&king awful or just because you are female and dammit sometimes I just need to cry. In an office setting you are thrown together with people that you wouldn't necessarily choose to spend everyday with and sometimes that's stressful. And yeah sometimes I don't cope with stress that well, which lets say can make getting on not exactly smooth sailing.


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Maybe it's just me but I have preconceptions of a person before I have met them. I am more likely to pick out the bad in a person before noticing the good. I'm never ready to say I like someone until I actually know them and I hate that people get upset when I have an opinion that they don't agree with, don't ask me if you don't want to know. 

So dear new person, it's not you it's me.




Thursday, 22 May 2014

Things I Suck At...

There are some things I am just not good at and these are some of them...

Putting on makeup. If I can be bothered to put makeup on at all, which is very rarely, I am like a small child smearing dirt on my face. I really wish I was as good as some of the beauty bloggers I read but I'm just not that confident.

Painting my nails. My nails don't even go past the ends of my fingers which is why I claim that I am rubbish at painting my nails but the fact is that I am just cack handed. If I want them pretty then I have to ask my sister to paint them!

Being a food blogger. The fact is I can't take a picture before I start shoving food in my face. Pictures taken tonight from prove this!! 


Thai Duck Stir Fry and Banana Split Waffle was really good from Giraffes and the fact that I get 25% discount with my student card is also an added bonus. And the food comes out presented better than the pictures above would indicate!

Not being a giant hypocrite. I get really angry at pedestrians who walk in the road and meander about but I am honestly that person. I also get really angry at people who cannot drive but yeah I'm pretty sure I fall in that category.

Handling my alcohol. I am not a good drinker but yeah tonight deserved cocktails. Its been a really long couple of weeks at work and I've been struggling but Mango Lime Daiquiris make things much better. And they were half price!!


Being serious. Which this picture proves....


P.S. I'm as shocked as you that I have two pictures in a row of myself with my eyes open!!!