Friday, 29 May 2015

I don't know about you but it seems that more and more people are being diagnosed with a mental illness, whether it be depression, anxiety or OCD etc. Now, that could be because we have become a lot better at openly discussing it so more people are choosing to let people know, or it could actually be that mental illnesses are more common these days. I guess we'll never really know.

When I was in New York I went to a museum which was all about the human body (bear with me, it's more interesting than it sounds!).  As soon as we walked in, we were met with a film discussing today's lifestyle and the brain, and why it's now more important than ever to look after our mental health.

See, technology has come a long way. We are always after new gadgets and equipment that will give us more time and do things for us. For example, the microwave.. cooks food in 5 minutes as oppose to half an hour in the oven. With all this technology that is designed to give us more time, it's ironic what we seem to have even less time available to us. 


Because we are always striving for the next best thing. We always want more! 5 minutes to cook dinner? Yeah, it's not fast enough.. 

The internet has become a place in which we mostly compare to others. We want the dream holiday, fairy tale wedding and big house.. and then we post a picture of it and show the world only to be 'topped' by someone else. And so we get jealous and start working towards the next thing immediately instead of enjoying what we've already achieved. We are constantly working, and you know what? Our body just cannot keep up because it's not designed to. We've potentially evolved too far...

If our body doesn't keep up, our mental health suffers too. We work long hours, eat too much or too little, and don't sleep enough which can lead to stress, depression and anxiety (to name a few). We are all part of today's society which unfortunately means we YOU are at risk - we ALL are.

I'm guessing you don't want to suffer from any of those things, so give yourself a chance and switch off every now and then. Do something to relax, refresh your mind and get a good night's sleep. Prevention is key, after all ;)

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Wednesday, 27 May 2015

I am snacker.

Unless I stuff myself stupid at a meal time, I usually need something to get me through to the next one so I'm always on the look out for new healthy or not so healthy snacks. I actually love trying new things now, which could have something to do with a few years of deprivation, so when Natural Balance Foods asked me to review their Trek Protein Flapjack, I obviously said yes. 

I'm no stranger to Natural Balance Foods actually; I love their Nakd bar range as they are definitely a healthier alternative to the standard, sugar ridden cereal bar you find in supermarkets or any chocolate bar (that's not to say I don't eat them though..). However, they do all sorts ranging from cereal bars to protein bars, and I've not tried their flapjacks until now. I'm really pleased I was given the opportunity because I've been wanting to try the coconut flapjack for ageeees.

I received 16 bars in this mixed box, which worth pointing out as the box is reused and therefore helping the environment. Good start, yes?

The box includes 6 flavours, meaning there is something for everyone; Cocoa Oat, Morning Berry, Original Oat, Cocoa Coconut, Oat Raisin and Banana Bread.

All of the bars are gluten, wheat and dairy free (except the chocolate coated flavours which are Cocoa oat and Cocoa Coconut), and contain 9-10g of protein which makes them filling, vegan friendly and tasty.

Personally, I don't think you can go wrong with these. 
My favourite was probably the Cocoa oat obviously, but there isn't a bad flavour amongst the bunch. They are ideal as part of breakfast or mid afternoon with a cuppa.. who cares when? I love them! 

 *I was sent this box in exchange for a review however 
all views are my own and if I didn't like it, 
I wouldn't write about it!

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Monday, 25 May 2015

I've been wanting to set up a new series for a while now, especially as I come across and have already come across so many inspiring quotes. It just seems a shame to not share them and kick start a new week with some very often, much needed inspiration! So, voila! Here goes..

This is one of my favourite quotes and I think it is so, so important. I think it is all to easy to go through life simply eating, sleeping, working and repeating that notion. Therefore, we must make sure that we do something we love so we don't just merely survive our life but rather we love it, do it well and give it our all. This saying is exactly how I hope to live my life really!

 Also, I got a job as a health care assistant (finally!) and I start next week, so I want to make sure that I go into this job with optimism and passion, because hell I hated being unemployed. It does concern me slightly that I can barely go 10 minutes without having something meaningful to do, however I could dedicate an entire post to that! The job isn't my dream job but it's a step in the right direction, which combined with going to Sri Lanka, should give me a good chance of getting a job I want when I return in April. So I do need to make sure I enjoy this final week off. Do things that make me happy, laugh with those I love and care for those need it (and those who don't!).

Have a lovely bank holiday and four day week everyone!
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Friday, 22 May 2015

Summer is rapidly approaching here in the UK, although you wouldn't think it by the current weather forecasts. Weather aside, it's around this time that people start booking or looking forward to their summer holiday which usually involves a beach or swimming pool.... and oh yeah, swimwear.

And it's usually around this time that people think 'oh sh*t, I need to diet. I need to get a beach body'. And you know, I hate that this seasons makes people feel that they have the change and modify their current body.

So maybe this season, you could do something a little different? Accept the way you are now, stop caring about fad diets, and just enjoy yourself in the sun. Hopefully these 3 things will help you do just that..

1. Obvious but true.. go to the beach, put your self on to the beach and hey presto, you have a beach body! It really is that simple ;)

2. Ok, so unfortunately it's not always that simple for some people, and my guess would be that 99% of us, dislike certain body parts or dislike wearing swimwear. There are so many ways in which you can feel more confident, without having to eat 3 lettuce leaves a day in order to halve your body weight so that you can feel 'beach body ready'. Invest in swimwear that flatters your figure, wear a beautiful kimono or your favourite statement necklace and lipstick. Or, go to the beach with people you love and make you laugh because when you surround yourself with people who care, it will instantly boost your confidence. Basically, do what makes you feel comfortable!

3. We all have 'flaws'. Scars, marks, spots, blemishes, cellulite.. you know, those things that are usually air brushed and photo shopped out of pictures in magazines? There is no perfect body because perfection does not exist. We are all different and come in many shapes and sizes, and those imperfections that we tend to dislike, are what make us human. The world would be pretty boring if we were all exactly the same, right? What I'm trying to say in a roundabout way is that 'flaws' are normal. NORMAL. They don't need changing.

Oh and remember to have fun! You'll be on holiday after all.

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Wednesday, 20 May 2015

One thing I didn't mention in my previous post, was that my Mum and I actually had a few juices in New York, and they were delicious. For my 21st Birthday, because I love Deliciously Ella so much, I had a smoothie maker/juicer but I haven't used it yet because I didn't want to take it back to Uni. However now seems the perfect time to carry on making them! It's also great timing really, because I have been challenged by Florette Salad* to make a recipe for their salad campaign. Florette makes all sorts of products so you can make anything from kale recipes to crunchy salad recipes.

Now, I know a juice isn't a salad but technically it has salad in it and sometimes a juice is just way more refreshing mid afternoon. I am not an advocate of juice diets to lose weight though, I think they really unhealthy and quite pointless, especially as any weight that is lost will just be regained once you stop juicing. Despite this, I do think fresh juices can be a good accompaniment to breakfast or as a snack.

For this particular juice, I wanted to make something from the ingredients I already had at home to prove to myself that this doesn't have to be a 'special occasion' kind of thing. So you could essentially mix and match ingredients to suit what you have!

The ingredients I have used in this juice:

2 small Oranges, 1 Apple, 1/2 Cucumber and a big handful of salad leaves (I used Florette's baby leaf salad) and a small amount of water to get things liquidizing. I didn't measure the water.. more just a free pour ;)

And voila! One green, nutritious delicious juice (even if it does look off putting..).

I poured mine into this ridiculous purchase from Madame Tussaud's in NY. Juices/smoothies just taste better in a cool glass don't they?

 *I was sent this challenge in exchange for a Florette salad goodie bag
however all views are my own and if I didn't like it, 
I wouldn't write about it!

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New York 2015

Monday, 18 May 2015

Unless you are new around here, you know that last week I was in New York! I have one word which could sum up the entire week really and I could leave it there..


I've honestly never felt to disappointed when it came to board the plane home. Everything was just amazing, the weather was glorious, the food amazing, and the sights/attractions were places I'll just never forget.

Before we went, my Mum and I purchased the New York pass, which if you ever go to NYC then I suggest you do too because we saved a fortune! We basically spent the equivalent after one day, let alone five. The pass meant we could go up the Empire State building and Rockerfeller Centre, see the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island. We went to the Museum of Modern Art, Museum of National History Museum, Discovery Times Square, Radio City Music Hall, the 9/11 Memorial and tribute centre and Madame Tussaud's, as well as hiring bikes to cycle around Central Park, and going on a river cruise and water taxi. We also have discounts off restaurants and shows, which we used for Planet Hollywood and to see Phantom of the Opera and Mamma Mia! We literally did it all...!

We ate at some great places too, trying to try something different everyday. We tried a Thai restaurant, Applebee's diner, Planet Hollywood, Luke's Lobster, The Red Lobster and Thalia's to name just a few. If you ever get chance to try a Lobster roll, then do it! They are amazing!

All week we only used one train, which was to see the Statue of Liberty as we were staying in Times Square. The rest of the time, we walked. We walked everywhere. I swear to god we must have walked about the equivalent of a marathon this week (no exaggeration!). However, as we hardly spent any money on transport, it meant we had a fair bit of spending money.. so we bought another suitcase full of gifts and souvenirs back, especially from M&M World and Hersheys. I'm fairly sure my brother is grateful ;)

Anyway, I got back this morning and fell asleep for a few hours, well and truly exhausted. I've had the best week ever and would just say that if you ever get the chance to go to NYC, then go!

If you've made it this far, I applaud you!

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Girl In The Dark

Thursday, 14 May 2015


Anna had a perfectly normal life - good job, nice apartment and a fabulous guy. However, she suddenly begins to experience worrying symptoms. It feels like her skin is burning every time she sits in front of her computer screen. This soon develops into an intolerance to light itself meaning Anna has to spend the majority of her life in complete darkness, simply listening to audio books and playing word games, either alone or with visitors. There are times when she experiences remission and is able to explore the world as the sun is setting/rising but never in complete daylight.

The only saving grace is her love interest, Pete. Anna can never live a normal life again but this book shows how Pete is really the light in her darkness.

Ok, so I LOVED this book. I should probably mention that this book is a memoir and therefore real, which makes the whole book extremely touching and interesting. It is so hard to ever imagine how it must feel to be intolerant to the light, and you really do develop such empathy for Anna. I raced through this book, wanting to know more about the illness, whether Anna manages to get married or even find a cure. Her narrative voice is fantastic and welcomes you in wholeheartedly. If there's one book you read this summer, then read this one. I'm sure you won't regret it.
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S Club 7

Saturday, 9 May 2015

So here's the thing, up until last night I'd never been to a concert. How bad is that? Anyway, that did change last night when me and my housemates went to Manchester arena to see S Club 7!

We'd planned this ageeees ago, when S Club 7 performed the Children in Need song and we were all like 'LET'S GO'. It also coincided with the end of uni so we used it as an excuse to celebrate the end in style. Being 90's kids, S Club were one of our favourite childhood bands so seeing them was a definite must really. Who else remembers jamming along to S Club and Steps?

I got the train up from Birmingham, and met the others in Manchester to check into our hotel, a bit of shopping and food before going to the arena. We did wait quite a while for them to appear but it was so worth the wait. We just partied to all of the old songs, pretending to be 10 years old again! It was such a good night!

I'm a little disappointed that this was the first concert I've ever been to actually, because now I feel like anything else will find it difficult to live up to their standards! However, I think I'd definitely like to attend more as the atmosphere is amazing and it was just a great night :)

The perfect way to celebrate the end of uni! The pictures aren't the best but I'm gonna post them anyway...

P.S I'm going to New York next week so it will be a tad quiet on here. Hope you have a great week!

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Monday, 4 May 2015


Once again, I totally forgot about this feature but it's back again for now! As I now have a bit of time off job hunting, I can definitely devote some time to this space too :) Oh and I have time to binge watch series  and read without feeling guilty!

This is what I've been doing outside of uni anyway..

I read | The Abortionist's Daughter by Elisabeth Hyde. I was going to review this but I've given the book to my best friend so no longer have the book to photograph, SO here's a short review. This book is about a lady who is an Abortionist and dies suddenly in her house. The book is essentially a 'who done it' and it follows the lives of the husband, daughter and other suspects.. a good book if you like crime!

I moved | Home! Yep, on Saturday I packed up all of my belongings and moved away from uni. I finished my final shift at work and was given a lovely card and box of Milk Tray. I don't think it's hit me yet though because I don't feel emotional at all...!

I watched | The Imitation Game. My brother and I watched this yesterday actually and I didn't think I'd like a film about decoding Enigma in WW2 but it was actually really interesting! It was quite sad/shocking at the end too, which definitely gives you something to think about. I don't want to spoil it but you should definitely watch it if you can :)

I won | Jasmin Charlotte's blog giveaway! Even though my housemates think I'm really lucky, I really don't win much so was so surprised when I won Jasmin's giveaway. It was a lovely Benefit make up set which I'll definitely enjoy using :) Also, go check out her blog because it's a great read!

I hope you all have a great bank holiday!

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End of Undergrad!

Friday, 1 May 2015

YESTERDAY I FINISHED UNI! That is so weird to write - 3 years of hard work has no just come to an end. I went with my best friend, Beckie, and handed in our dissertations which was a lot more emotional than I could ever have imagined. Unfortunately, I had to work immediately after but Beckie and my housemates went out last night and celebrated in style... I've spent most of today in bed hanging. Sign of a great night out though, right?

I won't know my degree classification until July, unless I work it out. However, even if I do know I won't tell people until then just in case my maths is slightly wrong! How awkward would that be?

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