Tuesday, 25 November 2014

Night Tales

Last year it was Dalston, this year the Night Tales event has returned and its all kicking off in Old Street.

This was my first experience of Night Tales and from what I saw in pictures it looked incredible! The indoor/outdoor space with twinkling lights, live DJ, cosy seating area and the winter chill in the air really made it feel like Christmas is just around the corner.




Let me get this part of the way first (the only negative) because it is such a great event and it doesn't last for too long it is obviously going to attract a lot of people. And because of this, as you expect and can read in review of this event, the line to get in is pretty long... The gates opened at 6pm that night and we arrived about 7ish? There was already a hefty line to greet us and it took about an hour to get in. But it was worth it if you like this type of thing.

There you go, negatives over and done with. Onto the positives!

As you can see in photos, its a great looking event. But unless you get there when your doors open I wouldn't hold your breath on getting a seat. But that doesn't change much, you don't need to sit down to have a great time! You have a great choice of hot alcoholic drinks which are funky twists on the traditional mulled wine. I tried the Hot Spiced Negroni which is very similar but with more of a bitter after taste, which I liked but it didn't seem like anyone else did. The other was the Hackney Punch which was really yummy, if I remember correctly it was apricot and apple? So nice and sweet and probably the more popular choice. Both drinks were £7.50 and come in smallish cups, so it's not cheap but what do you expect.

The food stalls were a big thing at this event, for a smallish area they crammed in at least 6-7 well known names such as burgers from Patty & Bun, grilled cheese from Morty & Bob's and pizza from Voodoo Ray's. Unfortunately I didn't get to try everything but I did have a heavenly slice of Voodoo Ray's pizza and trust me...I've never made sounds like that while eating pizza before. But you can't hold it back with these guys, the food really is that good that you start making creepy moaning sounds!

If that doesn't make you want to go try it for yourself I don't know what will. But I would be quick, the event finishes up on December 19th!

It's £3 entry and you can find the address and check out what's happening each night at www.nighttales.co.uk 


Have you been already? What did you think? What was your favorite bite to each?
Let me know in the comment box below, i'd love to hear from you!


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Saturday, 22 November 2014

Chinese/Herbal Tea

Anyone that knows me will know that I love tea. I drink it everyday...most of the day. Typically I love good old English Breakfast Tea with milk and suger, you just can't go wrong with it. But when I'm feeling fancy I will mix a Breakfast Tea and Earl Grey together, if you haven't tried it yet please do IT'S DELICIOUS. But this post isn't about English tea, it's about Chinese tea.

So if you have read my previous posts you will know I recently went on a trip to China. While I was there for I drunk a lot of herbal tea and I never realised how different it was to the herbal tea bags we drink back home. I've always liked herbal and fruit teas but now I know how it's meant to taste I can't go back. So the key to having a great tasting herbal/fruit tea is to buy loose leaf tea and if possible organic.



If you are thinking about starting to drink loose tea your going to need either a tea pot with a strainer (I use the little glass one in the picture above) or a tea ball infuser. It sounds like more work then just chucking a tea bag in a cup I know...but the great thing about this is you can refill the tea pot with the same tea leaves in until the flavor goes which is far more cost effective and it taste better then tea bags. I always fill up my pot and wait a few seconds for it to infuse, fill up my tea cup and top up my tea pot with hot water and take them both with me so I don't have to get up to make another tea!


Here are some tea's I've ordered in the past and all taste really nice, and not too strong either. I'd also recommend buying tea a caddy rather then a pouch as its less messy and the tea will stay fresher for longer in the caddy:
Cherry Rose Tea
Jasmine Green Tea
Vanilla Rooibos Tea

As well as loose leaf tea tasting great, there are lots of health benefits! For example, Jasmine Green Tea is a natural antibacterial, so it's great for your gums and stomach. It also helps with digestion, weight loss and many other things.


What are you favorite teas? Do you have any questions about trying loose leaf tea? Do you have any you would recommend to me?
Let me know in the comment box below, i'd love to hear from you!


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Wednesday, 19 November 2014

Baked Camembert

This is one of my all time favorite snacks, you can't go wrong with a bit of meat and cheese! Especially around the festive season, cranberry sauce and cheese boards just remind me of Christmas day when you snack after your massive roast. And it's beyond simple (and quick) which means you don't have to wait as long to start munching! You can get slabs of camembert in all supermarkets (just make sure its in a box cause that's what your going to bake it in). Get a selection packet of meat, a nice freshly cooked loaf of bread and don't forget the cranberry sauce!


Super simple steps...

1. All you have to do is take the camembert out of the wax paper (if it is wrapped in it inside the box) then pop it back into the box. It can be a bit of a squeeze to get it back in once you've taken it out but it will fit. Then take the lid of the box off and put it on the bottom to give it more of a stable base.

2. Next you make a X slit in the top of the camembert, so you can get to the yummy part easier once it's cooked. Put it on a baking tray and let it cook in the oven for about 10mins (or until the cheese is all melted) I normally put my oven on 180-200C.

3. Now the cheese is all melted and ready to dive into! Slice up some of your fresh bread, get a dollop of cranberry sauce and start dipping. I like to have cured meats with it as well but maybe not everyone would like it.

That's it! Simple and delicious :)

Do you have any yummy, quick and easy meals? What food instantly says Christmas to you?
Let me know in the comment box below, i'd love to hear from you!


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Tuesday, 18 November 2014

Christmas Blogger Gift Swap

I've just entered my first blogger gift swap event run by A Piece of Viola and I'm so excited to find out my blogger buddy!



The idea is to get bloggers together, regardless of how big or small your blog is, to get to know each other and gift swap. I personally think its a fantastic idea and a great chance to meet other bloggers and possibly make a new friend!

If your interested in getting involved too then have a quick read through the rules for the Christmas Blogger Gift Swap

But you better be quick because the closing date for entries is November 28th!

And you never know, you may be paired up with me :)


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Sunday, 16 November 2014

Tame that frizz girl!

I always look at those girls with natural wavy hair and think, how the hell do they keep it so perfect?? It doesn't seem fair when I wash my hair and leave it to dry naturally I get one half of my head goes really curly and the other half goes frizzy and flat. Why can't it all be perfect and curly?

Over the years I have gone through fazes were I put loads of effort and time in my hair (curling/straightening it every day) but that time has been and gone now, I just want quick easy solutions to this mop of hair I have. So I've tried a few different techniques, some are a bit more effort then others but for now I will show you two of the low effort ones with completely different curls...

Umberto Giannini curl defining mousse

The first is using curl holding/anti-frizz mousse called Umberto Giannini Curl Friends - Shapely Curls Defining Mousse which I spotted when I was having a mooch around Boots and it seemed to have some great reviews. I've always been worried about using mousse as I always picture it as turning out being really crusty and sticky but thankfully this mousse wasn't like that.

I wasn't too sure how much to use first of all as I have long hair, so I just put it on bit by bit until it felt like I had some hold on my curls. Overall it does what it says on the tin, it gives your curls a bit of hold while making them less frizzy without getting crusty hair syndrome. I think if I tried it next time though I wouldn't scrunch it so much...I think were my hair is long it drags the curl down so the roots to mid-length of my hair aren't really curly, but the ends go super curly. So that's what I'll be trying next so keep and eye out for next time!

Also I wanted to quickly mention my all time favorite hair product, Argan Plus by Unique. I use it every time I wash my hair and maybe once in between if the ends of my hair are looking dry. I would recommend it to anyone who has dry/damaged hair, it instantly adds shine, smells great and makes your hair super soft.



Soft natural looking curls

This next technique I discovered by accident when I was roughly blow drying my hair. I sectioned my hair/twisted it then clipped it up, and when I let it down it looked really nice! So I went with it and tried it with all my hair and it ended up being me great natural looking soft curls.

To do this I blow dried my hair as I said, drying the roots properly and the mid-lengths to ends so they are almost dry but not 100%. Then you take small sections of your hair and twist and pin up out of the way for the next one. And it's as easy as that! Depending on how strong you want the curls to be, leave them pinned up either for a few hours or over night. Once you take them down you will look a bit like Medusa but don't panic! Untwist your hair and run your fingers through it etc just to rough it up and get it out of the twist shapes. You may or may not want to make some bits more perfect using curlers but I don't bother.

Once your hairs all pinned up:


After you have untwisted your hair:


Have you tried any of these products/techniques? What were your opinions on the results? Do you have any products/techniques you would recommend I try?
Let me know in the comment box below, i'd love to hear from you!


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Wednesday, 12 November 2014

Bounce Bar - Holborn

So last Friday I went to a bar around the corner from Chancery Lane station near where I work. I'd never been before but I wish I had, it's so cool!


The main room in the venue is huge and jam packed with ping-pong tables. We didn't aim to go there because we wanted to play, but I'm so tempted to go back and have a game or two. All I can say is luckily enough ping-pong balls are light because they were flying everywhere and if you go you will get hit with one eventually. I lost count of how many times we had them hit us/bounce across our table or into my drink.

We only had one quick drink but it was a really cool experience being surrounded by everyone playing. I can't say much about there drinks other then the lychee martini I ordered. I am a proper sucker for lychee martini's, I even make them at home. And Bounce Bar makes them well so I recommend going and having one!


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Sunday, 9 November 2014

Guy Fawkes

My initial plan for Guy Fawkes weekend was to get wrapped up and poodle down to the local display in Chelmsford which sounded pretty good (firework display, bonfire, beer tent, food, live radio dj). Because I'm not that interested in firework to go and stand in the cold for a few hours just to see a display, I wanted the whole shebang which Chelmsford seemed like it had!

So perfect, that was the plan. But plans never work for me it seems. In the end it was raining most of the day and me and Alex had gone out the night before so we were both a bit tired and wanting a pyjama day in. And when we saw it was really coming down outside, there was no way we were going to that firework display. So....we ordered two large pizzas as well as sides and two portions of cookie dough and watched The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel. Not a bad night?




What did you do for Guy Fawkes? Any displays you would recommend for next year?
Let me know in the comment box below, i'd love to hear from you!



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Wednesday, 5 November 2014

ChattyFeet

Today I was lucky enough to get a pair of ChattyFeet socks from one of the company directors themselves and I just wanted to share them with you because their pretty damn funky...





ChattyFeet is a brand of quirky socks, designed by a small group of illustrators (that can be found here) each with a different fun illustrated character. Why are they called ChattyFeet you ask? Because you can make awesome foot-puppets out of them! As they say on the ChattyFeet website...

"we have discovered ChattyFeet socks are great for persuading housemates to make you a cup of tea. Simply waggle your toes, put on your best/worst/weirdest accent and allow your funny socks to request that much needed cuppa on your behalf -- job done"

So I got the super cute 'Miko' who looks like a anime character with a sugar rush (look at those crazy eyes). The socks themselves are really soft and from people I know that have had these for a while they are yet to get any holes in. So strong too! But there's a huge selection of different characters to choose from for adults and children as well as family and gift packs so go check them out!

www.chattyfeet.com


Do you have ChattyFeet in your sock draw? Have you just ordered a pair?
Let me know in the comment box below, i'd love to hear from you!



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Monday, 3 November 2014

Daisy by Marc Jacobs

So on the way back from China I was roaming around the duty free shops at Shanghai airport and I couldn't help but be dragged in by the perfume section. The aim was to find a small bottle of the Lady Million perfume I have been using for what seems like forever now. I really do love it though, its sweet but not too sweet, which I like. I looked around and asked lots of the sales assistants but no one seemed to have heard of it. (Possibly because of my lack of Mandarin speaking skills but never mind!)

I was about to walk out and give up when I spotted out of the corner of my eye a cute display of bottles. And yes...it worked. I confess i'm guilty for falling for well displayed products, especially when they smell divine as well! I bet by me saying 'cute perfume bottles' most would be able to guess Marc Jacobs new collection, and you would be right.



I had a little nose (bad joke) and tried 'Honey', 'Daisy Eau So Fresh' and 'Daisy'. The hard part is that they all smell so nice! I had to stand there for quite a while smelling and re-smelling all three perfumes, comparing bottle design and prices. But in the end it just fell down to what it should be based on, what one I like the smell of most. 

So the 'Daisy Eau So Fresh' was the first one I picked up. It smelt really fruity and sweet and is meant to have hits of rose, pear, grapefruit and plum which I could smell but no way could put names to it without looking at the label. 

The next was 'Honey' which I preferred as it wasn't as intensely sweet. But as the name suggests it has a honey scent to it which is soothing as well as hints of vanilla, peach and apricot. I was sure this would be the one for me. In fact I went to walk away when I saw the last bottle...

'Daisy' is a gorgeous middle ground of sweet and musky in my opinion, so exactly what I go for. The least sweet out of all three but definitely my favorite. With hints of violet and strawberry and is described as a natural, sunny, pure and free-spirited fragrance. The bottle also looks really pretty with the foam daisies on the lid so it looks great on my dressing table. I couldn't be happier!

Typical I come back and find there is an even better deal on VoucherCodes.co.uk, so if you love this perfume check it out:


Have you tried any perfumes lately you have fallen in love with? 
Let me know in the comments box! I would love to hear from you.


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Sunday, 2 November 2014

You can now find me on Bloglovin



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Journey to the Far East

I recently returned from an incredible trip around China, which I was lucky enough to experience with my mum who I can only describe as 'young at heart'. We traveled around Beijing, Xian, Guilin and Shanghai in 13 days, so it was a bit of a jam packed trip but we loved every minute of it. We saw many beautiful landscapes, bustling markets, ate so much yummy food and some weird ones, and even picked up a few words which I was super proud of!

If I was to pick one place out of everywhere we went to recommend it would definitely be Beijing. If you want a mixture of the city and cute market streets then this is the place for you. As well as having the benefit of being close to many of the famous landmarks such as the Great Wall of China, Tiananmen Square, Forbidden City, Temple of Heaven and Summer Palace, it was my favorite city for sure. We only stayed there for 4 days but I could have easily stayed there much longer!

But maybe the best way to express how unforgettable the whole trip was is in photos...


































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