24 April 2017

how to spend 48 hours in lisbon.



So we'll have to excuse the film photos once again - I love them although I appreciate they're not the best quality for use on the internet. But seriously, isn't it nice to have a photo to hold once in a while, instead of hidden away inside your phone? The only issue is that I actually went to Lisbon nearly a year ago but never quite got around to getting them developed - and that really is one of the big problems of having film photos! 

Anyway, on to the matter at hand. Last year (!) I headed off to Lisbon for a little bit of time before heading off to Baleal in Portugal for a surfing trip. I'd been to Lisbon before, with my family, for a very short amount of time, but this was a little longer and this time I was with some friends and was over the legal drinking age which always makes a bit of difference when it comes to holidays I reckon.

48 hours probably isn't enough time to get to grips with all that Lisbon has to offer, but it is a great amount of time to get a taste for what the city has to offer. 




VISIT SAO JORGE CASTLE

We stayed in a little Airbnb pretty close by to the castle and so we made it one of our first stops. You can see it from pretty much anywhere in Lisbon, and it's perfect for walking along the towers and the ramparts to get a wicked view of the rest of Lisbon - and for checking out the view of the 25 de Abril Bridge across the River Tagus. It was quite busy when we arrived, but not overly so, and we paid the 8.50 euro fee to get inside so we could try and take photos of the peacocks which are everywhere inside the castle grounds.

EAT AT GRAPES AND BITES


Hidden away on Rua do Norte, this was one of our favourite places to grab some food while we were in Lisbon - to the point where I still think of it often even now. There was a wide range of petiscos - the Portuguese cousin to Spanish tapas - hot and cold, brilliantly presented and thousands of different wines to choose from too. The food was great, the service brilliant and best of all was that it wasn't too expensive either. 



EXPLORE HILLY STREETS

Even though it nearly killed me and my fat bum, exploring some of Lisbon's back streets was one of my favourite things to do while I was there. I never once managed to get my bearings and considered myself truly lost at most points of time, but you won't get much of a better work out walking up and down the thousands of steps that connect one street to the next. You won't get much better views either, which seem to sneak up on you when you least expect it. 




TAKE A RIDE ON TRAM 28

Most of Lisbon's trams have been replaced by more modern and efficient trains, but one line, the 28, still retains the trams which were commissioned in the 1930s. Not only that, but the route is one of the longest in Lisbon, meaning you get to see a whole lot of the city for a whole lot less than you would were you to pop on a double-decker tour bus. The only downside of doing this is that you have to put up with an absolutely massive queue that you just don't have to with other trams - but you just won't get the same level of charm exploring the city in any other way. When we were in Lisbon and it decided to rain one afternoon, this tram was a lifesaver and kept us dry while we explored for a bit. 



DRINK GINJINHA

I'd never even heard of ginijnha until a friend I was with in Lisbon decided we had to make our way to a little shop to pick up a shot. It's a thick sweet liqueur made from sour cherries, and it's apparently been around in Portugal for over 200 years. We picked ours up from A Ginjinha on Largo de Sao Domingos, where it cost around 1.4 euros. Personally, it's not a drink for me but I'm not one to turn down a shot if I can help it!

SNACK ON PASTEIS DE NATA

I think it's basically the truth that if you don't have at least a million of these little custard tarts when you're in Lisbon, then you have to question if you actually made it to Lisbon at all? You can pretty much get them everywhere, and could probably spend days looking for the best ones. Popular opinion seems to be that the best and most authentic tarts can be found at Pastéis de Belém but it's not too hard to find others to compare them to. 



LOOK OUT FOR TILES

This was seriously one of my favourite things to do in Lisbon, and I came home with more photos of tiles than I did of anything else. I didn't go quite as far as visiting Lisbon's tile museum, but to be honest, I came pretty close. They're a pretty important part of Lisbon's architecture and I was constantly surprised by the sheer range of tiles that there are - every single pattern and colour. It's a pretty big shame that at eye level a lot of the tiles are covered in graffiti - but I suppose that's a reminder to keep looking up!

Also worth a mention is to head to the Jerónimos Monastery. It's not something I personally did, but some of the friends I was with took a visit and really enjoyed it. I'm ashamed to say I passed thanks to a slightly sore head...

So that's my little guide to how to spend 48 hours in Lisbon. Had I had longer, I would have loved to have headed to Sintra, but maybe next time? I'm pretty sure I'll be back.

Have you been to Lisbon? Do you have any more tips?

Annie x

You might also like: a surfing break in baleal

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21 April 2017

a spring wishlist for people who hate wearing colour.

spring wishlist

embroidered dress / sunglasses / tie waist dress / midi skirt / clutch // midi dress // swimming costume / white smock dress / gingham smock dress 

* For when you're still just a little bit goffic. 

One of the main things that makes people around me hate me is that I don't like the summer. I wish I did like the summer, I quite like the warmth and no rain and sitting in pub beer gardens and all of those other things that come with summer but I hate having to dress for summer. 

The thing is, I like everything to do with winter clothes. Jumpers, scarves, long sleeves, black and grey and anything dark. I don't like the extra maintenance that comes with summer: feeling like you have to shave you legs more (which, if you have PCOS like me, you will know becomes an almost daily task), the fake/real tanning, the make up marks that your sunglasses leave, the sweat and the humidity attacking my hair and making me look like something out of the Adams family. 

And that makes shopping for the summer and the spring and all the transitional periods in between next to bloody impossible for me. Every time I wake up and see the sun it actually put me in a bad mood because I can never work out what to wear.

And so, I turn to online shopping. And I hit it hard. 

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17 April 2017

a surfing break in baleal, portugal.


surfing break in baleal portugal

surfing break in baleal portugal

surfing break in baleal portugal

How amazing are film photos though? It's so nice to get them back from the developers and see what you've taken. It takes me right back to my childhood. We'll just ignore that I've had to crop my thumb out of the majority of these...

Anyway.

On to the matter at hand.

The one problem with taking photos of your holiday on only your film camera is that it will, at least if you're me, take you about a year to get them developed. I went on this holiday in May last year. I went with what can only be described as a ragtag bunch of friends - so much so it would almost be impossible to describe the relationship between us all - my ex-best friends University housemate and his current housemate would be a good start. Isn't it funny who you make friends with as you get older? I'm babbling again, sorry!

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14 April 2017

millions of mini eggs-cake | a recipe




As I mentioned on Wednesday, one of the brilliant things about Easter is that you can just overindulge on chocolate and use it in baking everywhere and no one will bat an eyelid. After using an absolute overload of creme eggs in my last recipe, it's only fair that I now turn my attention to their cousin the Mini Egg. Because seriously, who doesn't enjoy scoffing themselves silly with mini eggs at Easter? 

I made the inside of this cake bright orange and bright purple too, using Americolor food colourings because it doesn't bake out. You could use whatever colours you want, as long as you know that they're resistant to the high temperatures of your oven.

This cake is so easy to make, that even I managed to do it! 

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12 April 2017

creme egg rocky road | a recipe.

 creme egg rocky road recipe

creme egg rocky road recipe


I know it can be quite a controversial topic, but how does everyone like to eat their creme eggs? Personally, I actually quite like them smashed up into a McFlurry, especially if I can dunk my fries into that McFlurry but we're starting to stray into a different topic of conversation, and I'm aware that that's not exactly the usual choice.

So in the interests of being vaguely normal, I thought I'd try my creme eggs a different way this year, and make a pretty wonderful creme egg rocky road instead - after all, one of my favourite things about Easter is that you can go completely over the top when it comes to using chocolate in baking and no one will even bat an eyelid. Yesssssss.  

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3 April 2017

a little skincare wishlist.

skincare wishlist 2017


I've been really trying with skincare now for about three months (yeah, I started late in this particular game!). Back in 2016 - y'know, all those months ago, because seriously, how is it already April? - I literally only used a simple face wash and occasionally a trusty Superdrug hot cloth cleanser, which is are the same products I'd been using since about 2012. I know it sounds so thick, but I didn't know what a cleanser was, wasn't clued up on the importance of moisturising and the thought of a serum was completely removed from my life. I've not been blessed in the clear skin department, but hitting the age of 26 and realising that I needed to help myself out and get on with trying to make my skin clear rather than hoping a cheap Superdrug face wash will do it for me has changed the game somewhat. These days I have an actual routine and am while I'm not quite at the clear skin stages yet, my skin has definitely improved and I can now run to Tesco without any makeup on and not want to put my head into a plastic bag. So here's a little wishlist that I'm looking to try to take this journey a little further!

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17 March 2017

golden cheesecake truffles | a recipe

 mini golden cheesecake truffles

I've mentioned before that I've got into the habit of baking most weekends. I find it an extremely therapeutic activity most of the time. Unless I make macarons or attempt something which is known to be difficult, in which case, it's the complete opposite and I get narky and throw things straight into the bin. But that's one of those things and for the most part, it's something I enjoy doing. However, sometimes I just can't be bothered to properly bake but I still want to make something. My oven is notoriously temperamental, so overused from all the years of being inside a little rented flat that the numbers have worn off and I know that it just won't be the day to make something which requires anything more than a microwave. And that's where these cheesecake truffles come in. They're simple, easy to make, don't require an oven and are still extremely pretty to look at and hand out at work. Plus there are only three ingriedients. 

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15 March 2017

the ordinary cold-pressed rose hip seed oil | a review.

the ordinary cold-pressed rose hip seed oil a review


First things first, I am no beauty expert and this is by no means a beauty blog. But I have recently been trying to get into the scary world of skincare and take better care of my skin. This has involved a lot of research (Reddit has weirdly been a great source of help in this regard) and lots of scary words like retinol and AHAs. The first thing you learn is that there's a lot to learn. The second thing you learn is that this can be an expensive game.

So while I was searching on the beauty section of ASOS (because who doesn't spend a disproportionate amount of time window shopping on ASOS?) I came across The Ordinary, a pretty new skincare brand. I'll admit that at first I was pretty much taken in by their super pretty and simple packaging which is right up my street and secondly, I was taken in by the price. You can't get away from the fact that this range is just a hell of a lot cheaper than a lot of the skincare on the market - and not cheap in a naff way either. Cheap in a "oh, this is actually good value for money" kinda way. 

While making one of my many ASOS orders, I decided I'd give the brand a go and I picked up their Organic Cold-Pressed Rose Hip Seed Oil, which sells for £9. I was looking for some Rose Hip oil for my skin anyway because there are so many benefits to it - this one contains linoleic acid, linolenic acid and pro-vitamin A which is great if you have acne prone skin (like me) and need something to reduce scars and even the skin tone. 

the ordinary cold-pressed rose hip seed oil a review

So let's start with the positives, shall we? The price we've already covered - a definite tick in the box. The packaging we've also slightly covered - it's slick, simple and appealing, I love it. Not only that, the bottle itself is UV resistant, which means the product won't degrade over time. Another tick in the box. It's glass too, which doesn't feel cheap at all. The only thing to be wary of is that it is a dropper - which is no issue for me but I know it can be an issue for some. 

But now to the negatives. For a start, I just don't see a great benefit to my skin from using it. And believe me, I've used it quite a lot (otherwise I wouldn't have bothered reviewing it yet, yadda yadda...). Secondly, I just hate the smell. I hate the smell so much that I can't face putting it on my face and so close to my nose anymore. Unfortunately, this means that this particular product has found its way to the back of my drawers, unlikely to be seen for a while. 

On a final note, the one off putting thing for a newbie like me are the names. As I've said, skincare is a confusing game and these products don't help. You have to have some idea of what you want from a product before you buy them as they can sound a little more like a chemistry set than a skincare brand (The Ordinary Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1% anyone?), but that's a note about the brand rather than this product in particular. 

Having said that, it won't put me off buying anything from The Ordinary again (I may or may not have already purchased The Ordinary Lactic Acid 5% + HA 2% and I'm already eyeing up The Ordinary Advanced Retinoid 2%). It may not be the most indulgent of skincare brands, but it's shaping up to be one of the most real, at prices that novices like me can stomach - even if I do have to do my research first.

Have you tried anything by The Ordinary?

Annie x
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13 March 2017

lemon curd shortcake | a recipe.

lemon curd shortcake recipe
I have to say, making a shortcake was an experience. It's not something that I would usually think of making - to be quite honest I wasn't even sure what a shortcake was. I knew what shortbread was, of course,* but shortcake seemed to be something different. My only context was those strawberry shortcake Muller corner yoghurts. So what possessed me to decide to make a shortcake? Well God only knows.

I must have remembered seeing this recipe from somewhere and one day I decided to get off my arse and make it. Thing is, I absolutely love lemon curd and I will always go out of my way to make something that involves it as an ingredient, even if I do have to stop myself from sitting there with a spoon and eating it out of the jar. This time I went a step further and made the lemon curd from scratch - it was a little easier than I'd thought, which is always a good thing. One major plus point is that you end up making more lemon curd than you need so you can keep it in jars if you promise not to polish it off with a spoon...

lemon curd shortcake

The thing to remember with this recipe is that it doesn't look the prettiest. A friend at work likened it to looking like a beige cow pat, which really isn't something you want to be putting near your mouth. The one thing I take away from it though is that it really didn't taste like what I assume a cow pat to taste like. 

*In case you were wondering - you probably weren't - shortcake can be made using vegetable fat instead of butter and usually has a leavening agent which gives it a different texture. 
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10 March 2017

8 things no one ever tells you about living abroad.

8 things no one ever tells you about living abroad amsterdam film

When I was finishing my degree, at the grand old age of 21, I didn't feel ready to off into the real world. It wasn't because I felt I wasn't ready to find a job, move into the real world or anything like that, it's just that I didn't feel I'd finished studying. I was in the process of finishing a Law and Politics degree and although I'd adored the politics side, I'd hated the law side. Of course, the law side had been the majority of the degree. I wanted to learn more politics, it felt like my last chance and so I knew that doing a Masters degree was one of the ways I could fit in learning a bit more. 

Faced with not being able to afford to carry on in Cardiff to do a Masters degree, I made the choice to head abroad. I'd loved Holland on a small holiday when I was 18 and it kept cropping up as a choice. It was a relatively cheap choice (at £1,400 for a year's tuition compared to Cardiff's £5,000), was taught in English and did the course I wanted to do. Not only that, but it was only a 45-minute plane journey from Birmingham and from home. Of course, there was quite a lot of drama around the whole application process which meant that I found out I'd got into my University of choice only two weeks before I was due to start. If you've ever moved countries in two weeks, you might be able to guess at just how stressful that was. But it's how I ended up living in Leiden, the Netherlands, for a year of my life.
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8 March 2017

how to spend 24 hours in berlin.

24 hours in berlin reichstag building

I think one of the main overhangs from my family holidays when I was younger is that I always think I can fit seeing a whole city into one day. When I was growing up, we often went on cruises. I know, everyone thinks they're for old people and while I would be lying to you if I said they weren't jam packed full of old people, I always really enjoyed them. They're a great way of seeing a completely different country without having to worry about travelling between them. It meant I got to see most of Europe before I was twenty and I'll never let anyone trash talk a cruise. 

Having said that, you can't fully experience a city in a day. I know that deep down. But life gets in the way of travelling so much, with only around 25 days of annual leave a year you really have to pick and choose what's important to you. And you really can get a good sense of a city in one day even if you can't explore it all - for example, I know you'd have to pay me to go back to Constanța and I'm so glad I didn't waste annual leave on a longer trip. I like picking places in Europe to see quickly so you can make a decision on whether to go back. Berlin was one of those choices.

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6 March 2017

feuilletine chocolate biscuit brittle | a recipe


feuilletine chocolate biscuit brittle recipe


The problem with not feeling like I'm doing much of value at work at the moment is that I get home and feel like I've wasted a whole day and that there wasn't much point in me being in the office. I get that horrible feeling that I have to do something, anything, to make me feel like I was at some point productive during the day. And sometimes, the only thing I can think of doing is baking. Sometimes it's cleaning, sometimes it's organising a drawer and sometimes it's baking. I lead the most thrilling of lives. 

I arrived home the other day after sitting in my office for even longer than usual waiting for my boss to turn up for a meeting. When 7 pm ticked passed and I realised he probably wasn't going to come, I made a run for it. So now it's late, I'm in a bad mood and my brain feels like it's turned to mush. I needed to do something and it needed to be really quite easy and quick if I wanted to get into bed at a vaguely normal time. I still had to fit in the second half of Silent Witness too. Obvs.


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3 March 2017

26 things i've learned in my 26 years of life.

26 things i've learned in my 26 years of life



PANIC STATIONS. I turn 26 tomorrow. How did this happen? How have I now become closer to 30 than to 20? Does this now mean I'm in my late twenties, or can I still get away with being in my mid-twenties? Does anyone know the real definitions? EEK. Would sixteen-year-old Annie still be devastated that she doesn't own a house yet? Probs.

Anyway, with renting being on the cards for a few more years yet (sorry little me), I thought I'd put together a little list of things I've learned in my years on this planet.


Comparison is the thief of joy. It's such a cliche, but it's really true. I'd be lying if I said I'd worked out how to not compare myself to others all the time, but at least I can recognise I'm doing it and that it's not always the nicest thing to do

Tourists in London will always be annoying. I don't know how I haven't managed to get over this one yet, but it's very difficult when you have to walk through Westminster Tube station or over Westminster Bridge every day. I remind myself every day that I'm just as annoying when I'm abroad and that I need to get over myself.

That I have size 10 feet, not size 8 feet. I haven't quite learnt this one yet, as I still buy the wrong size shoes (seriously, try buying pretty size 10 shoes...it's impossible) but I'm getting better. The last pair I bought were a size 9.5. It's closer.

That having an easy job is not the same as having a good job. There are so many elements of my job that should be perfect - flexible working, good salary, good annual leave etc - but I still need to move on and feel like I'm using my brain.

School days aren't the best days of your life. 

A good skincare regime is something I should have invested in earlier. Going in to Superdrug and throwing yourself at a shelf in the hope of something landing in your hands that at best doesn't make you spottier is not a strategy. 

Cleaning my wooden floor with polish was so bloody thick. My housemates and I spent weeks slipping and sliding everywhere. I may as well have plonked banana skins everywhere. Don't do this guys, not unless you fancy cracking your head open every time you wear socks.
It's okay to not want to go out-out. I'm quite happy to see that part of my life confined to the days of University, along with painful heels and shit clubs. Mind you, it's probably a good thing - I think if I went out-out in London I'd be bankrupt. 

Exercise is vaguely miserable but always worth it. You really do always feel better for it afterwards don't you?

You move at a different rate to your friends. Although it gets harder and harder to smile when someone else tells you they're buying a house.

Grandparents are everything.
First class Virgin train tickets are worth spending the ££ on. That free drink, separate seat and not having to run along the concourse with everyone else to throw yourself on a London Midland? I'd pay for that any day.

You can be lonely even when you're surrounded by people.

It doesn't really matter what qualifications you have. To a point anyway. No one has asked me what my GCSE results are for a long time and sometimes I even have trouble remembering what I took.

There is nowhere colder on earth than Clapham South tube station. I wish there was a way out that didn't involve that escalator into that wind tunnel. Colder than the South Pole. 

Never get into the habit of washing your hair every day. Because a) it's no good for you and b) it's so bloody boring.

You can't please everyone. To be honest, I'm still trying to learn this one. 

Life is too short.

Everything happens for a reason. I'm a genuine believer of this. I once spent eight months searching for a job getting more and more depressed and desperate when one didn't appear. I later secured myself one of the best jobs I could have ever started with which has opened so many doors along the way.

Even the nicest people can be toxic.
Social media is not real life. I will always remember being in exact same place as a famous blogger at exactly the same time and her tweeting complete bullshit about the weather. Such a small and silly little thing to lie about but it taught me to take everything online with a pinch of salt.

It's okay not to care. Equally, it's okay to care too much. For example, I really do not care about X Factor or BGT, but I really care about what happens on Eastenders. Shrug. 

Talking to people on the tube isn't the worst thing. 
Nothing good can come from Question Time. I can't remember the last time I watched this programme and didn't want to scream at the TV or get myself into a stupid twitter argument (seriously, I once got into a big argument with a man about whether you could have 52% of five people on a panel. You can't).
London isn't the be all and end all of life.

Investing in clothes is probably worth it in the long run. I think I'd cry if someone totted up how much money I've wasted on crap over the years in Primark.
Let me know if you agree with any of these. Or, let me know what you've learned in your time on this earth!

Annie x
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1 March 2017

a must see in berlin: visiting the east side gallery.

east side gallery berlin

east side gallery berlin

east side gallery berlin

On the top of my list of things I needed to do in Berlin was to head to the East Side Gallery. The East Side Gallery is possibly the largest open air gallery around and is a dedicated memorial for freedom. When the Berlin wall went up, the East side remained clear of graffiti, but on the free side of the West, it was covered in street art. In 1990, after the wall had come down in 1989, a group of artists from more than 20 countries came together and painted over 100 murals on a 1316 m long section of the Berlin Wall, stretching from Oberbaumbrücke to the Ostbahnhof, on Mühlenstraße in Friedrichshain-Kreuzberg, near the real border which was on the River Spree. 

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27 February 2017

three years in london, this week's my londonversary.

living in london for three years

Three years ago, I would have what most people would describe as a pretty big week. Within the space of a couple of days, I moved from the Midlands to London, started a new job and turned twenty-three. It was pretty overwhelming. Overwhelming is a good adjective to describe life in London generally. I can't remember the last time I didn't feel exhausted by life here, managed to walk down a street that wasn't crowded with people, had a commute that didn't infuriate me or managed to get home from work without seeing someone or going out somewhere first. It's fast, but let's be honest, it's pretty fun too.


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24 February 2017

6 things i want to do in prague.

6 things i want to do in prague.

The only thing I'm going to take away from booking this trip to Prague is that I shouldn't be allowed on the internet anymore. More specifically, I shouldn't be allowed on travel websites that have pretty good deals to go to countries that I've always wanted to go to. I think having a world scratch map doesn't help. All I can see every day are these big gaps of countries that need little spaces scratched off and I spend too much time thinking about how I'm going to do that. Poland is driving me nuts, it's so big and needs to be cleared off, Switzerland is even worse, stuck in the middle of other countries I've been to like the odd one out. At least I'll be able to deal with the little problem that is the Czech Republic soon!  

I've finally learnt that doing a teeny bit of research on a country before you go is never a bad idea and it worked out quite well for Berlin. So in the similar vein, I'm whacking out a post of things I want to do.


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22 February 2017

how to be a better constituent when you write to your MP.

how to be a better constituent when you write to your MP

Recently, with Brexit and Trump and everything else that is happening in the world, I've seen more and more bloggers becoming politically engaged and encouraging their followers to get involved.  I think it's great - I get pretty annoyed by people who take no interest in politics because I think it's so important. I also think it's pretty bloody interesting and can often be more exciting as a drama than anything that's on Netflix at the moment. Although writing about politics is something I won't generally be doing on my blog (honestly, I live and breathe politics, I need a little escape sometimes) I did feel the need to write this post.

I've seen so many comments on social media about just "writing to your MP" that I didn't think it would be a bad idea to help someone get the best response they can. I've worked for an MP now for nearly two years, I deal with all of his correspondence in the first place and so I like to think it's something I know about. I hope, at least *fingers crossed*

And of course, these opinions are mine and mine alone. 

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20 February 2017

visiting bakewell. for a tart. or was it a pudding?

bakewell travel visit

bakewell travel visit


You know those horrible inbetweeny days in December, between Christmas and New Year? Those days when you're practically comatose from hitting the box of Roses too hard, you're not sure what day it is and you feel like you've eaten so many roast potatoes you may as well be one? Well this year, I just had to get out of the house. 

One of the benefits of coming from the Midlands is that you're never too far away from anything. Most places are a two hour drive away, which means you get a great level of choice on where to head off to. Funnily enough though, I don't think I've ever properly explored the Midlands. And so when it came to picking somewhere to go and visit for the day, I thought I'd head a little closer to home.

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17 February 2017

a guide to brick lane market.

brick lane market

brick lane market

One of the wonderful things about living in London is the sheer amount of things you can get up to each weekend - those wonderful days tacked on to the end of the week when you don't have to start your day squashed into a fellow commuter on the tube. I've really enjoyed visiting the different markets London has to offer (there are quite a few to be fair). If you want to get a real feel for an area then all you have to do is visit its market. The difference between Notting Hill's Portobello Road market and the East's Brick Lane market are stark, but so are the areas they're both placed in. I've not been to a market that's been even remotely similar to the last one in London. Have a look at my posts on Maltby Street and Columbia Road, you'll get what I mean.


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15 February 2017

neon heaven at gods own junkyard | walthamstow.

gods own junkyard walthamstow

gods own junkyard walthamstow

gods own junkyard walthamstow

I love neon lights. A simple but slightly ridiculous statement to make, but it's true. I even used to have a Pinterest board devoted to them. I love how they're tacky and they're bright and they're kitsch and they can really add something to the interior design of a place (you'll know what I mean if you've ever been to Flat Iron), but deep in my heart I know they're something I'll probably never own. I'm just not that good at styling. I can see it now, I'd invest in a neon light and before I knew it, my flat would be mistaken for something a very different kind. A red lit building. A bit like the one I used to live near when I lived in the Netherlands, you know?


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13 February 2017

street food thursdays at markthalle 9 | berlin.


street food thursdays markthalle 9 berlin

street food thursdays markthalle 9 berlin


When I found out that one of the main food markets in Berlin has a street food night which takes place on a Thursday night and that I also would be in Berlin on a Thursday night, it was sliiightly obvious where I'd be heading. Inevitable almost. Heading to a food market is becoming a bit of a habit - both abroad and in London - and so I knew we'd have to find time for Berlin's offering too. Apparently, Berlin is becoming a bit of a haven for foodies and although I wouldn't quite put myself in that category, it was still worth checking out.


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10 February 2017

i failed at dry january, but i don't feel like a failure.

dry january learning

So I didn't quite manage to complete Dry January. In my defence, I'm not alone. Apparently, something like nine out of ten people who take part don't manage to finish the whole month. Well, oops, I've joined those nine out of ten and become that statistic. But actually, you know what? I'm not all that bothered. I only broke it twice and I was never overly sure that giving up something when you're not even sure why you're giving it up was the best of ideas to start with. I don't drink that much! 

So I failed, but I won't berate myself. Plus, I've learnt a few things in the process:


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8 February 2017

mini baileys salted caramel chocolate tarts | a recipe.

mini baileys salted caramel chocolate tart recipe

My approach to baking seems to be to stare at my kitchen cupboards long enough to work out what I can make from the ingredients I have. I will do anything to stop myself from walking to Tesco, even if I do only live next door. These Baileys salted caramel chocolate tarts come from one of those moments - I had one of these salted caramel pots sitting around in my fridge which was just asking to be used. I'd also put a bet on lots of people having a bottle of Bailey's kicking about in the house too, perhaps a leftover relic from Christmas.

mini baileys salted caramel chocolate tart recipe

mini baileys salted caramel chocolate tart recipe

You can mix your approach to these quite easily. For example, if you want to make something a little fancy but don't have a lot of time, you can buy the pastry cases and the salted caramel without too much of an issue and then instead of baking, it's more of a case of assembling. But neither of those things are actually all that difficult to make either. It's entirely up to whatever you feel up to and what your time constraints are.

Let me know if you give them a try, they're incredible, promise.

Annie x


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