Wednesday, 30 May 2012

Red Living - my magazine quest.

I'm on a quest. A quest to find my perfect magazine. A selfish endeavor, sure, but a satisfying one.

I am looking for cool interiors - wood and plenty of patterns and white walls, recipes laden with colourful, enticing photography, some fashion, and of course effortless, brilliant writing. 

Every week (Tuesdays probably) I'm going to buy a new magazine I've never read before. This week, I bought Red Living. It looked glossy and delicious.


The majority of the magazine was food articles and recipes, which was no bad thing. Recipes I would very much like to eat, too, but I felt it could have done with a little more variety. Some wit thrown in for good measure, or a fashion piece would not have gone amiss.


I understand that this magazine is focused on food and interiors, as stated in the Editor's Note, and so I do not fault it for the otherwise mentioned lacking. It just fell slightly short of my expectations.


It was a glorious read. Best served with tea and sunshine. But I'm looking for a little more... something. Grit, perhaps. In any case, it's only a twice yearly so I'm not sure it would do me for 6 months anyway. I continue my search...

Monday, 28 May 2012

A pleasant one.

Man, I love Brighton.


Saturday we spent wandering around The Laines, along the sea front and into town. I ordered the most delicious of salads and a side of fries for lunch. Carbs, init. We sat outside a pub with drinks, people-watched and listened to a nearby busker. He sang Tom Jones songs I'd never heard of. At about 7pm, with my blistered feet, we headed back to the flat and ordered pizza. Cue obligatory photograph of margherita pizza. Eurovision and Twitter make a FANTASTIC pairing.

Most of Sunday morning and early afternoon involved a lot of lazing around and television watching. Gareth's flat has a balcony and it's possible to get from balcony to roof, albeit fairly awkwardly in my case - clambering over tiles and railings is no mean feat. I'M A GIRL. From atop the three story building, Brighton looks glorious, and I look forward to admiring it more. There was a food festival going on at the sea front and so we went to see that with a few of Gareth's friends in the afternoon. There were loads of speciality food and drink stalls, and with live music going on and plenty of sunshine, it was grand. I did take a picture, but my thumb was over the lens, so I couldn't include it. Blame the sun in my eyes.

I'm home now. The old Monday feeling stung this morning.

What did you do?

Sunday, 27 May 2012

Instagram whore.


Some photos of my life, lately.

There's lots of sun at the moment isn't there? Like, a whole load of it. In general I don't like the sun, as in, I don't like being in it. However, I appreciate a warm summer's evening and a barbecue as much as the next person. I also appreciate happiness, and happiness is clearly and proven to be higher during the sunny months. So, as long as I'm not standing/sitting/dancing etc in direct sunshine for an extended period of time, I'm more than happy for summer to be upon us. In fact, you can all have a burger on me.

Thursday, 24 May 2012

5 things.

1. I am desperate to go to a drive-in movie theatre. Anyone heard of one in the London area? Hook me up.


2. This is part for my boyfriend's benefit (he likes this shoot) and part for everyone (me). This Ellie G photo shoot is DELICIOUS. Here's another image from it.


3. I do.


4. A blog I've recently started following called Rose & Crown. The photography is dreamy but homely and warm. It's a real find.


5. Imagine these babies in PIMMS. Thank you, once again, Joy the Baker.

Wednesday, 23 May 2012

Post-exam-high.


Lying in bed last night, I could not think of one think I would like to do less than sit an exam today. It was (and is) set to be the hottest day of the year so far and the prospect of a hot, sweaty classroom, filled with strangers, and writing four essays in the space of an hour and a half, came below anal rape* on my list of things-I'd-rather-not-be-subjected-to. But then I remember the post-exam-high. That feeling that somehow, against all the odds, you have defeated your Everest, and it's over. (Until your next exam). I love that feeling, and the evening after the exam of nothing but relaxation and celebratory cakes. I figured I could deal with an hour and a half of ANYTHING, if it was in the name of jubilation and cake.

The exam today went okay. One topic was good and the other topic was bad. There's no point in thinking about it until results day. The bigger question is: wine or beer? I returned home from the exam, happy as a clam, and sat in the garden with my book for the rest of the afternoon. This evening we had a BBQ, and as Gareth was working in London today he came over for dinner. I assume this is what it's like to have a normal, non-long-distance relationship. There's something intoxicating about eating outside and continuing the evening outside without even a cardigan for warmth. Warm, summer evening BBQs are what life is all about.

*DISCLAIMER: occasional use of hyperbole**.

**that means exaggeration, numbskull.

Monday, 21 May 2012

Things I would rather do than revise.


1. Tidy my bedroom.
2. Straighten my hair.
3. Finally fill ancient, dusty, empty photo frames. 
4. Curl my hair.
5. Redo my eyeliner in serious Winehouse style.
6. Paint my toenails.
7. Make a hot beverage. Or ten.
8. Ponder the existence of humanity.
9. Watch Jenna Marbles' youtube videos.
10. Refresh Twitter.
11. Refresh it again.
12. Retweet Gary Barlow.
13. Retweet a picture of a cat.
14. Eat snacks.
15. Go for a run. Hahahahaha.
16. Stare at myself in the mirror for an extended period of time.
17. Accidentally text someone a naked picture. Not necessarily of myself.
18. Organise important documents.
19. Write a blog post.
20. Learn the Chinese alphabet backwards.
21. Pluck every leg hair in turn.
22. Have a conversation with Tess Daley*.
23. Pick all my mascara from my eyelashes.
24. Watch Robson Green's Extreme Fishing.
25. Touch a stranger's feet.

*I take that back, I'd rather revise.

Friday, 18 May 2012

Instagram whore.


In between revision sessions this week, I've been clearing out my bedroom (post to come), wondering why I haven't been eating the dream combination of eggs and avocado my whole life and drinking plenty of coffee with friends. I feel like I'm going through a real transitional phase at the moment, and I'm finding that both frightening and exciting. As anyone would, I'd expect. But with my 20th birthday looming, and big decisions and life changes on the horizon, I'm contemplating my sense of self and general happiness. My brain is kind of deep and pensive at the moment, and it's good; it's important to assess yourself and your life. Of course, however, I'm evening things out with series three of Glee; I have given up on waiting for it to come out in the UK. A jolly interlude of singing and Sue Sylvester never hurt anyone.

Oh and Bear Bear says hello.

Wednesday, 16 May 2012

5 things.

1. YES JOY THE BAKER. French onion soup SANDWICHES.


2. I'm thinking a lot about summer. Around this time I start plotting bikinis and the stomach I'm going to magically have to show off in them. This is the dream...


Number 1 and 2 maybe not be conducive to one another.

3. Also on the summer wish-list: lots of cocktails. This blood orange gin sparkler caught my attention.


4. I want a cat and I want that braid. I want a cat more.


5. I absolutely adored Laken's post (and upcoming new blog feature) on Keeping House. I'd really recommend her blog. A woman after my own heart.



ps. I updated my About recently. Just so you know, you know.

Tuesday, 15 May 2012

Energy.

photo source: Pinterest

There's a couple of reasons for me writing this. Firstly, the first chapter of The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin (which I am currently devouring) is all about energy and how it affects our happiness levels, and secondly, I don't have any.

I apologise if you follow me on Twitter and this is all you've heard for the last few weeks, but I'm in the midst of exams (along with the rest of the country's 15-23 year olds - I should probably suck it up), and am finding studying both difficult to concentrate on, due to rising stress levels and Modern Family being so damn hilarious, and exhausting. My alarm goes off at 7.30am every morning, a reasonable time for most, but I struggle inexplicably to open my eyes, let alone actually extricate myself from under my duvet, shower and all that other shit human beings do every day. I blamed this on being a teenager (an excuse I can only use for three more weeks), innate laziness, and the world's most snuggly bed, but more recently I've been led to wonder if it is something more. Something I should probably address.

Putting to one side the unwelcome theory that I have a horrible disease, I'm now leaning towards a combination of lack of exercise, lack of a good diet, and anxiety. Put simply: I don't do any exercise, I eat far too many biscuits and have a fairly severe anxiety disorder. This all seems to fit with the theory.

Gretchen Rubin, my new life guru, would tell me to assess the problem, find a solution, and then eliminate it. The problem is, I've tried to address this problem (nearing on) a million times before, and to no avail. I've bought countless exercise DVDs, my very own pair of running shoes and vowed to take up numerous exercise classes. None of which have lasted more than a week and, in fact, the latter has never come to fruition. I've tried to give up sugar before, given the amount of research done proving how sugar affects anxiety. That went well... for three fricking days. So you will see my dilemma. Why should this time be any different? I've gone almost 20 years being tired constantly, fueling myself entirely on caffeine and eating sugar because I'm sad and exhausted, and I'M NOT EVEN A COMPLETE MESS! I do feel that I need to do something though, I would be rather disappointed in myself to merely accept defeat and continue with life in a way that is in no way advantageous to me.

For that reason I call for advice. From you, my dear blog readers, from the findings of Gretchen Rubin, and from any research I can stumble across using our old friend Google.

I have a feeling my running shoes might get a day (ten minutes) out. That is what Ellie Goulding's advice would be (see below). And maybe I should start taking vitamins. In any case, I will be back to tell you of my findings in a week's time, when, hopefully, I'll have a somewhat tighter grip on how the hell I should sort my life out.

Watch this video. If anything can motivate me to run, this can.

Monday, 14 May 2012

Some scenes.



It was Diana Vickers day on Saturday, so Gareth and I spent the day at my four year old cousin's birthday party. As you do on such occasions. Said four year old lives in Richmond and so before the party, Gareth and I met to have a wander round, some lunch and a mojito.

There was a fair happening and some rugby going on (don't ask for specifics), so it was busy (or 'buzzy' as the optimist might say). Archie's party was wonderful, because he's wonderful. There were, what seemed like, bajillions of small children running around the place just ASKING to be trodden on, and I made some new small friends.

We drove home at about 10pm and then went to our local pub to peruse its refurbishment. Very 'me', would be my assessment. Side note: DON'T DRINK STRAWBERRY CIDER, IT WILL MAKE YOUR MOUTH FEEL FURRY.

On Sunday, I slept through my alarm, and what was supposed to be a let's-get-up-and-see-the-French-market-down-the-road-like-GO-GETTERS morning, became a lying-on-the-sofa-eating-cookies-and-watching-Britains-Got-Talent morning. We went down to the French market at about 1pm, and to be honest, it was just about a perfect Sunday morning. When in doubt, eat cookies.

We also went to see the new American Pie film. Gareth loved it, and I liked it, but then Gareth's seven years older than me and had actually seen the other films. I would have appreciated more hilarious nudity.

We finished off the day with a big roast dinner.

It was a way-above-average weekend. And I like those.

Saturday, 12 May 2012

Girl crush.

You lot seemed to like talking about girl-crushes last time. So here's some more of mine.






These ladies are the crème de la crème.

Thursday, 10 May 2012

Call me definitely.



What a cheesy title.

I, along with the rest of the UK (other countries; look at the men we have here), have spent the entirety of this week listening to LITERALLY NOTHING BUT this. When I heard that Ben Howard was to be covering one of the very best songs 2012 has come up with so far, I knew I'd go mental for it. But never, never in a million years, did I anticipate such perfection.

I mean, let's be real, the original is brilliant simply because it is such utter crap. Ben Howard - singer, musician and writer of debut album Every Kingdom which just happens to be musical genius - turned this teeny pop hit into something eerie, gorgeous and, well, credible. Whether Ben, himself, spent the majority of the song unable to keep a straight face or not.

But let's get to what's important shall we? Before I digress too far into getting all music-critic on your ass. Ben Howard is sexy, and it's been a long time since I've been quite so attracted to a male celebrity (the Shayne Ward days) (female celebrities I am attracted to daily). Fast forward to 1.20 and I defy you not to physically shiver with pleasure, butterfly-city. Every female I know and Byron (gay) went crazy for him on Twitter. And rightly so.

I'm going to stop now.

The only other time I've been this excited by a Radio 1 Live Lounge performance was when Ellie did this.

Wednesday, 9 May 2012

Instagram whore.



I've been to Brighton | I've philosophised | I've eaten my weight in delicious goods | I've painted my nails with a top coat of glitter because I'm brilliant | I've had train fun and enjoyed the wonders of Belvita breakfast biscuits | I've finished The Hunger Games :(