Earlier in the week I wanted to make something light and simple, but which had tons of flavour. This recipe worked a treat! The whole dish took less than 30 minutes to make, and felt super summery even though it was still chilly outside. I added a handful of pinenuts and sliced some garlic in at the last minute, and served it up with a salad, a blob of garlic mayonnaise and a blob of houmous.
Maple Spice has been one of my favourite bloggers for around five years now – her recipes are consistently innovative, interesting and most of all – YUM! Between Trout and I, we’ve made her ravioli, baked almond feta (which we enjoyed here), banana white chocolate muffins, curried courgette soup and best of all – turkey deli slices, which were brilliant. We remade these again this week, but switched up the spices to turn it into pepperoni – even better!
I also love reading through her food diary, Maplespice Eats. It constantly inspires me with new ways of working her brilliant recipes into day-to-day eating, as well as giving me ideas for lunches which I had long forgotten about. This site is especially good for new vegans – if you’re starting out it’s such a great way of giving you meal ideas and introducing you to loads of products which you might not have known were vegan.
Today we’re off to Vegfest in Hove – I’m so excited! It’s always so much fun to discover new vegan companies, grab a few discounted bargains, try plenty of samples and stock up on cupcakes. Then we’re going to my parents’ to celebrate a belated Mother’s Day. I’m super excited to see everyone – especially our two dogs!
What plans do you have for the weekend?
Have you made anything from Maple Spice’s blog? If not, why not!
Phew, this week has been a busy one! I’m settling into my role a little more now which means that over the last few days my workload has been a bit more hectic compared to my first week, when I was getting used to all of the different systems and programmes and getting to know everyone. I’m also trying to fall into some kind of routine when it comes to blog posts – thankfully the light is so lovely (most of the time!) in the mornings, so I can snap a few photographs then. I’m back to blogging before work, during my lunch break and as soon as I get home from work, and I love it.
All of this week I’ve been munching on bowls of Lizi’s Granola for breakfast. Topped with chunks of fresh strawberry and a (generous) blob of beloved peanut butter, or used as the finishing touch to a bowl of my true-love Alpro vanilla pouring yogurt – it’s the perfect simple brekka to put together so that I can get on with emails, editing and coffee-sipping.
I was kindly sent a bag of organic granola which I would definitely recommend – it’s simple, tasty, includes the odd pistachio (yum!) and is just sweet enough thanks to black treacle and agave syrup. All of Lizi’s products are suitable for vegans which is brilliant, and quite unusual for granola recipes. I really need to pick up the Pink Apple & Cinnamon flavour and the Belgian Chocolate flavour, they sound so good!
Have you tried Lizi’s Granola before? Which flavour has tempted you?
Oh, HI! I know, I know – I abandoned you last Wednesday, I’m sorry. But I’m back with some beautiful choices this week! Oh, how I’ve loved to window shop (is that still applicable online?) and show you what beauties have been making my heart flutter this week.
This week I’ve put together a special board dedicated to the launch of & other stories – everything is so beautiful, it was hard to narrow it down to a few choices! So many of their shoes are beautiful but unfortunately not vegan, which is a shame. I’m completely in love with this wood & rubber clutch – such a sweet design. & other stories is from the H&M group, and the theme for the brand is along the same lines of Cos. I can’t wait to pop up to Regent Street and check out the quality for myself.
Sometimes I like to pretend that I’m super rich, and I start putting together a wishlist on Anthropologie. And then I clock the imaginary total and get scared and close the tab. 1/I love this rustic side-table 2/These nautical oven gloves are slightly more on-budget and perfect for the approach to spring. 3/I’ve been a big fan of Smitten Kitchen’s blog for a long time and this cookbook will be amazing, I just know it. Her photography and recipes are brilliant. 4/This special edition vinyl is only available through independent record stores and will be released on Record Store Day – it features collaborations between Manchester Orchestra and two other bands; Frightened Rabbit and Group Love. Swoon. 5/These cushions are so beautiful – I love the knitted, woven texture but just can’t decide which colour I prefer?
Things that have been inspiring me this week:
+ this lovely article from The Fresh Exchange on writing from the heart as a blogger
+ words to live by, from Cupcakes and Cashmere. Celebrate the little things.
+ absolutely love these illustrations! Daily Dishonesty, featured on Honestly WTF.
+ so many questions from The Wily Brunette.
+ asian style dumpling soup from A Beautiful Mess.
+ i can’t not mention that re-union between Marina Abramovic and Ulay.
How is your week going? Do you have any wishes?
Wow, what a weekend it has been! Actually, what a week it’s been.
We kept our (eleven year) (!!!) anniversary fairly low-key with homemade cards and dinner at our favourite restaurant. I was absolutely stuffed by the end of the meal but the food, as always, was incredible. The dessert was the kind of sweetness that makes you break out into the biggest smile, and you have absolutely no control over yourself. Churros dusted in cinnamon sugar with salted caramel and chocolate dipping sauce. Geez Louise. If you ever visit Terre a Terre, make sure you have this pudding. And get the Terre a Tapas to start. You can choose your own main (but I do recommend the rostis).
We woke up early on Saturday morning (as usual) and had a relaxed morning in our jimjams watching Saturday Kitchen. In the afternoon Trout went to watch Whitehawk and I got started on my to-do list. After I had checked those things off I took a wander down to have a peek at the Chocolate Festival and enjoy some fresh air. I tried the most amazing apple & cinnamon truffles, so very delicious. The same company had vegan white chocolate hot chocolate, amazing!
After I had nosed my way around the stalls I wandered around for a little longer, picked up a few things at Infinity for my lunches this week, and enjoyed some brilliant busking.
I decided to save my pennies and make myself a latte at home, so headed back to settle down to watch one of my favourite films – Sidewalks of New York. It’s such a simple film but I absolutely love it – I must have watched it 50+ times. Of course I couldn’t sit still (I’m useless with focusing on one thing at a time) so started writing, catching up with emails, tweeting etc. And then I decided to whip up a batch of white chocolate chip cookies. Honestly, it’s a good job that I pretty much know every line of this film off by heart, otherwise I wouldn’t have a clue what was going on!
In the evening we went to a friend’s new flat for a few birthday drinks before heading over to see one of my favourite bands; Bouncing Souls. The venue was pretty packed, and everyone seemed to have a smile on their face. The only downside was that for some reason the promotor had put on a 4-band line-up even though there was a 10pm curfew – meaning that the Souls played a shorter-than-usual set with no encore. Bit rubbish but they played amazingly with an awesome setlist, and I got to run onstage and have a sing along with my best friends so it wasn’t all bad!
Today will mostly involve more time spent in my jimjams, watching Dog the Bounty Hunter, catching up with blog reading and commenting before heading to Burgess Hill to celebrate Mother’s Day with Trout’s family and stuff my face with chinese food. I woke up this morning to an email from the super-sweet Heather M letting me know that she had included me in her favourite reads. I can’t believe the company that I was mentioned with – there are some amazing bloggers there, and the email was the perfect way to wake up (even if it was 6am – thanks Ras and my strange bodyclock).
I hope you are all having a lovely weekend and spoiling your Mum’s! My Motherbear has gone up to London to spend the day with my Grandparents so we are celebrating next weekend. I’m looking forward to catching up with my whole family, including our two dogs!
How is your weekend going? Am I the only one who can’t sit still during a film?!
Oh gosh, sometimes I can’t quite believe it! Who would have thought those two sixteen year-olds kissing at the bus stop would be here, in this flat, with a cat called Rasputin?
The past eleven years have been wonderful – filled with so many memories, lessons to learn, holidays to enjoy, delicious meals, roadtrips, football matches, galleries, museums, restaurants, pints, cocktails, hangovers, lazy days spent in bed, croissants, reubens, laughter, tears, jobs, businesses, tax returns, tours, phone calls, bands, films, strawberry pencils.
To the next eleven years… and all of the years after that. I love you Trout! Thankyou for everything.
Life lately has been pretty hectic! I began my new job on Monday and am really enjoying it so far. Most of the time it doesn’t seem like work as I’m writing and working on social media campaigns, it’s like a dream! Everyone in the office is so sweet and friendly, so all in all I cannot complain. I love walking to work and catching sight of the Pavilion, and looking out the window from my desk and seeing the Pier – it really feels like home, rather than the two previous offices that I worked in which were tucked out of the way a little bit.
I had a slightly stressful start to the week what with all of my photographs being stolen and hidden away by Photobucket. Thank you to everyone who let me know, and for your patience while it was being fixed. I’m really hoping that they are all showing now and that’s the end of that nonsense. Anyway, on with what my days have been filled with lately!
I’ve been watching videos of my favourite bands via youtube.
I’ve been enjoying lots of salads – including ‘bacon’ and chilli popcorn croutons, and plenty of roasted chickpeas. I’ve also remembered just how much I love edamame beans and marinated tofu – it’s been so long since I’ve had either!
Stuffing my face with strawberry pencils, and other vegan treats, thanks to a sweet friend:
I’ve been enjoying nude nails (as inspired by Brighton Style Memos) – I love the simplicity. This is So Simple by No. 7.
I was chosen as one of the Picks of the Day on Bloggers.com last week. Umm, that’s pretty awesome! Totally unexpected and I was so grateful and completely confused to got an email from them on Friday to let me know. I received so many sweet messages and comments on my profile page, twitter and facebook. Thankyou so much you guys!
AND I won the Dorset Cereal’s Little Blog of the Month Award! I’m so flippin’ chuffed, I can’t believe it! I can’t thank all you lovely people enough for voting for me. It makes me even more excited to put together a little giveaway for you – it’s been in the pipeline for a while now, and I’m collecting lots of goodies so that I can really say thankyou to you all!
So all in all March has treated me pretty wonderfully! Tomorrow is me and Trout’s anniversary, which I’m super excited about! We’ve got a table booked at my favourite restaurant and then on Saturday we’re going to see one of our favourite bands (they’re playing in the 3rd video above). It should be quite a weekend! I haven’t seen Bouncing Souls for far too long, and they are always brilliant live. I remember the first time I went to see them – I was 17, and it was the day that I passed my driving test. It was an amazing day, to say the least! Gosh, ten years ago. That’s crazy!
How is your week going? Any plans for the weekend?
As part of my countdown to returning to work, my parents came down for a spot of lunch and Brighton-browsing on Friday afternoon. We went to one of my favourite pubs, the Earth & Stars, as I had only ever been there for a Sunday roast and they have a great menu during the week with plenty of vegan options. I picked the mushroom & aubergine burger and my parents both had beer-battered fish & chips, which they raved about! I was a little disappointed with my burger; it was quite dry and lacking in flavour but the tomato chutney it came with was pretty good, and it was great to spend some time with my parents.
We decided to walk off our lunch with a civilised tour of one of the most amazing buildings in Brighton; the Pavillion. So beautiful! I am ashamed to say that after 11 years of visiting Brighton, and 2.5 years living here, I have never been before! Shocking, I know. I would love to have dined at one of their grand tables, followed by a spot of dancing in the Music Room. The guest room had the most amazing bed, with about 8 mattresses! I would feel like the princess and the pea sleeping on that bed, I don’t think I would be able to get up in the morning.
After we had (kind of) walked off our lunch we popped into Infinity Cafe for an afternoon of coffee and cake. Infinity is probably my favourite place to get cake in Brighton – the cafe is so nice to relax in, all of their cakes are vegan (well, they were on Friday anyway), they have gluten-free options and really good coffee. Perfect! We picked a cake each and shared them all into three so we got to try them all. I was SO stuffed, but they were all delicious; an apple crumble cake, a chocolate gâteaux and a chocolate & vanilla cheesecake. Phew! We rolled our way back to my flat for some kitty cuddles before they headed home. The perfect way to spend a day off, in my opinion!
It’s my first day in my new job today and I’m super excited! Thankfully Rasputin let me sleep last night (I think he was pretty tired after being played with all weekend) and I woke up to blue skies and sunshine. Amazing!
How was your weekend? Have you visited Brighton, or the Pavilion before?
February, you were such a sweet month.
Not only did you host one of my favourite days, you also included sunshine, snow, delicious soup, good friends, plenty of Wednesday Wishes (1/2/3), inspiration and girls with pianos, conversations, a roadtrip, delicious sweets, amazing coffee from Whittard, love letters, a trip to London, catching up with my sister, finally visiting Houmous Bros, sipping red wine in a dark, cobbled cellar, and attending a fantastic press event at Porta. Phew!
Oh, and I finally found a new job! I won’t go into too much detail just yet, but I start on Monday and I couldn’t be happier. Thankyou to my sweet readers for your support and positive thinking. I think it definitely helped ♥
Back to those New Years Resolutions…
Exercise - I’m still going to DanceFit and still loving it! I also throw in the odd workout DVD at home, and yoga. Plus plenty of walking everywhere.
Blogging - 19/28 blog posts for February, not too shabby. I did attempt the photo-every-hour challenge, which I will return to another day!
Reading & Writing - I’ve been doing a lot more writing, and blog-reading (does that count?) this month, which has left me really inspired. I’ve found some great new reads which I’m hooked on refreshing.
Eating & Drinking - Erm, FAIL. I have cooked a couple of new recipes, but still enjoying a few too many drinks with friends and Trout, and have an addiction to fizzy sweets that I cannot seem to quit.
Explore & Inspire - Definitely nailed this one! Spending the day in London with my sister left me really refreshed and excited to get out more and grab new opportunities.
Save & Spend - I haven’t been able to save any money, but I have cut back on all spending other than on food and the odd night out. I’m hoping to continue with this ‘frugal’ way of living, with the addition of getting my savings account back on track as soon as possible!
How was your February? I hope it was fantastic!
Happy Wednesday! I hope you guys are all having a great week so far! I’ve been having a pretty fantastic week, but more on that another day. I’ve got a couple of Wednesday Wishes for you this week, so let’s get cracking!
This outfit is so different from my usual style, but there is something I love about it! It’s got just enough goth to make it a striking outfit, but the pop of peach in the top and nail polish gives it a softer edge. I love the detail in the t-shirt, and it would work great with a simple pair of jeans for the weekend, or dressed up with heels for an evening out.
This is much more my style – simple, monochrome and teamed with black and gold accessories. This outfit could work for both day and night – during the day it could be teamed with a pair of black loafers or slippers, and then paired with heels or wedges in the evening. I love the simplicity of the black bangle in particular.
Things that have been inspiring me this week:
+ nude nails on Brighton Style Memos. I don’t think I’ve ever had nude nails, but they look so nice!
+ sandra juto’s series of posts on her trip to New York: 1/2/3. Sigh. I want to go back!
+ miniature baked donuts on Cupcakes and Cashmere – so cute!
+ this series of 5 minute chats on Life as an Artistpreneur - such a fun idea!
+ a letter that John Steinbeck wrote to his son on falling in love, and this article on the importance of falling in love with people and not your career.
+ this beautifully inspiring collaboration between Parker Etc. and Anthology Magazine, and a whole bunch of talented people. I would love to do something like this!
As I said earlier in the post, this week has been pretty fantastic – I’ve ticked off one of my original Wednesday Wishes from a few weeks ago which has left me feeling much more relaxed and positive. This weekend will be filled with family and friends – lunch with my parents on Friday, followed bycocktails in the evening for a friend’s birthday, and on Saturday two of my friends from uni and coming down to Brighton which I’m so looking forward to. It’s time for a long overdue catch up, a few drinks, a nice dinner, a sleepover and a day of sightseeing in Brighton on Sunday! I’m really hoping the weather is brilliant. Can we please have some sunshine?
What are your Wednesday Wishes this week? What do you think of these outfits?
Last Thursday I was lucky enough to attend a press event at Porta, in Brighton. This sweet shop is packed full of gems; scarves, jewellery, bags – everything is so beautiful! The evening was dedicated to a new collection of laser-cut jewellery, created by some very talented designers indeed – including designosaurYEAH, Maggie Angus, Sugar Jones and Rosa Pietsch.
I fell in love with the interior details as soon as I stepped into the cosy room downstairs, which was filled with a handful of the designers and other bloggers. I can’t resist a good mounted skull! The room has recently been renovated, which means more space for even more beautiful products.
If you’re ever in Brighton, do pop in and take a peek at this treasure-trove of goodies! I wish I had some spare pennies to buy a few (dozen) pieces, but next month I will definitely be treating myself to something beautiful. I love the Pavilion necklace made by designosaurYEAH, and got chatting to Karli (one half of the brilliant design team) who was so lovely.
Porta stock plenty of other designers – their scarves particularly caught my eye (fingers crossed they stock some which aren’t made of silk!) and I really love the specs necklace – I can never resist the combination of black and gold.
4 Bond Street, Brighton, BN1 1RD
Mon – Sat: 10am-6pm
I’ve been a bit quiet on the blog lately – apologies! I suppose I’ve been a little busy, and didn’t have the camera last week so never really feel like posting if I can’t include a few of my own photographs. But enough excuses… oh gosh, I had such a lovely weekend! Catching up with family, shopping, houmous, red wine, a dark cellar, fro-yo, museums, sculpture and a guy tap-dancing along to his discman. Swoon.
I woke up bright and early on Saturday morning (more of a struggle than is possible to explain… I had pretty much been awake since 4am) and hopped on a train to London to meet my sister for a day of shopping and a long-overdue catch up. As soon as I left Bond Street station I picked up a coffee and walked down to Topshop where my sister was waiting for me – with more coffee! Hurrah!
You can never have too much coffee, right? I got straight on with picking out a new pair of jeans, courtesy of some vouchers my motherbear gave me for Christmas, and we headed back down Oxford Street to check out Selfridges. I treated myself to a couple of amazing pieces from Cos, which I’m so in love with. Everything is so beautiful in that shop, if I could replace my entire wardrobe with Cos I totally would.
After all of that exhausting shopping there was only one place I wanted to go for lunch – Houmous Bros! I can’t believe I’ve never been before! Baring in mind that my favourite food is houmous, crazy. The food was really great – fresh, tasty, fun. Perfect.
Of course, a trip to London wouldn’t be complete without visiting Ms Cupcake! It took me so long to decide which four flavours to buy! And I couldn’t resist a giant chocolate chip cookie. It was fun being back in Brixton – I haven’t been for so long, and it was lovely to walk around all of the different stalls and cafes.
For the rest of the afternoon we visited the Wellcome Collection to catch their exhibition, Death (one of my favourite artists was exhibiting a piece as part of the exhibition, which I didn’t realise, and got far too excited when I spotted it!), and the Museum of Film which I would totally recommend, too. On our way to the station we passed Tutti-Frutti and had to pop in to try their soya yogurt!
I had a pot of soya latte fro-yo which tasted so good! They had so many toppings, which would be great if you’re not vegan. They did have crumbled oreo cookies but I couldn’t be sure on whether they were the vegan ones or not. We ended the evening by visiting one of my favourite places in London – Gordon’s wine bar – joined by her fiancee, an old school friend and her partner. Gordon’s is the oldest wine bar in London, and offers the most beautiful glasses of wine and port in a dark, cobbled cellar. Once you finally find a seat (expect to wait a while) you can feel the tubes vibrating beneath you. It’s such a great place to stop for a drink – so romantic and filled with history. It was so good to catch up with my sister. I don’t pop up to London often enough, and with days like this I remember that I really should go more often.
Here are a few photographs taken on my phone from the weekend:
outfit for the day//jodie carey at the wellcome collection//
drinks at Gordon’s//croissants in bed, Sunday morning.
Sunday was spent relaxing, lounging around the house and watching football. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again. Sundays are made for doing nothing much at all! In the evening I put together a little American-themed dinner of burgers, onion rings, fries and coleslaw. Yum! Trout was inspired by this recipe which was featured on Sunday Brunch – chilli & bacon popcorn! Super spicy but surprisingly tasty!
What do you like to do in London? How was your weekend?
Happy Friday! This week seems to have flown by. It’s surprising how much I can squeeze into my day, even though I’m not working. I’ve had meetings, eaten amazing Mexican food with good friends, been to my DanceFit class, went to watch our local team play football (we won!), worked at the soup-run and attended a press event at Porta, a beautiful shop in Brighton (more on that another day). Tonight Trout and I are going to see one of our favourite bands at the moment; Paws. I haven’t seen them since last year sometime, and they were brilliant live. I’m going to be good and not stay out too late though, as me and my sister are planning a trip to London tomorrow for some much-needed shopping, champagne-sipping and maybe a spot of museum-hopping.
Yesterday was particularly busy, and I was relieved to finally get home, hop into an oversized t-shirt and tuck into my favourite pizza from Pizzaface. They offer vegan cheese on their pizzas and garlic bread, and everything tastes so fresh and delicious!
We have to have these vital accompaniments: sweet chilli sauce, bbq sauce and pepsi max.
Rasputin was pretty into the pizza, too.
Here are a few things that have been inspiring me this week:
+ this article from Love Taza on unplugging and spending some much-needed time away from your phone and many social media platforms. I’m tempted to try this myself; if a blogger of her stature (who obviously receives hundreds of tweets/emails/comments etc. in any given day) can resist checking her accounts then so can I!
+ a brilliant illustrated film from 365 Days of Breakfast, on a re-cap of her life. I would love to put something like this together!
+ peanut butter sticky buns from A Beautiful Mess. Oh sweet lord, these sound incredible!
+ this article on different perceptions of bloggers, from The Man Repeller. I particularly like the section where she discusses bloggers being gifted items, which leads their readers to assume that if they rave about any product then they have been gifted it. It’s a sad time when bloggers have to say that each post is not sponsored.
+ crispy cornmeal sweet potato fries from My New Roots. Wowza these look good!
+ this Creatures of Comfort AW13 collection, featured on peppermint soda. I love the clothing but I think I love the veg more!
+ Lyzi’s trip to Brighton at the weekend, on Being Little. I love seeing other people’s take on this lovely city, and reminding me of places that I should visit more often!
What do you have planned for the weekend? What’s been inspiring you this week?
Phew, how is it Wednesday already! This week seems to be trotting along nicely – I think the beautiful weather has done wonders for everyone’s mood and positivity. This morning I am more than a little sleepy, thanks to Rasputin and his adventures around the flat last night. He’s trying to be cute and snuggle up to me right now, but he’s not getting any breakfast after that episode.
Well as it is Wednesday, I have a few Wishes for you! I am a little obsessed with print at the moment, and I think it shows with my choices this week. I’ve put together a handful of outfits which are great for a variety of situations, and most can be worn for work and transitioned into evening wear.
This outfit is so simple – it would work great in the office, whilst being casual enough for a slow brunch on a Sunday morning, or drinks with friends. Orla Kiely’s collection for Boots has made me want to rush out and fake an eye test!
These trousers are fantastic! I’m in love with the print, and the way that you can accessorise them so simply with clean colours. It’s a great outfit for work, and I love this chunky cuff.
I absolutely love the combination of hot pink with polka dot – it makes for a super quirky but simple outfit. Plus these shoes are an absolute bargain at only £12.99! I really need to pick up a new pair of Levi’s – they have always been my favourite brand of jeans. The fit, the quality, the cut. Perfect. I need this whole outfit immediately!
How is your week going? Do you have any wishes?
Happy Tuesday! I hope that your week is off to a cracking start. I am so in love with the blue skies and sunshine that we’ve been having lately – if the wind were just a little warmer we could be having picnics and sipping coffee in the park!
We had a really chilled out weekend; on Saturday I walked up to Hove to browse around the charity shops – it’s been too long! – picked up ingredients for dinner, and met some friends to watch our local team play football. In the evening we had friends round and made a feast of food and drank bucksfizz. It was a pretty great start to the weekend. We had a more relaxing day on Sunday, involving plenty of coffee and newspapers, which is pretty much my favourite way to spend a Sunday. In the evening we made a cold noodle salad, vegan ‘duck’ pancakes and teriyaki crackers. So good! I love to make the most of our weekends together; during the week we have other commitments and things to busy ourselves with in the evenings, so it’s really nice to take some time out and relax together.
How was your weekend? I hope the weather has been treating you nicely!
Friday 15th February
When you’ve already had tears over your morning coffee it’s hard to see how the day will get any better, but with the sun shining so bright and with the sky being so blue, you can’t help but feel a little hopeful that the day will change for the better. Especially when you’re sipping a latte in your favourite coffee shop and happen to bump into an old friend and stay far longer than you planned, with an afternoon filled with a hundred different conversations. It certainly brightened up what could have been a day of sadness.
When the sadness hits, I always like to look at this post from Deer Circus. Who can’t smile at this cute dance?
Currently listening to:
+ Fiona Apple
+ Jenny Owen Youngs
+ Tori Amos
+ Regina Spektor
Apparently I’m in love with girls who have pretty voices. Especially girls with pretty voices and pianos.
One of my favourite things to do is settle down for a movie and put together a big bowl of mixed sweets – it’s like when you used to pop into Woolworths and get a pick’n'mix. Oh gosh, I do love a good sweet treat! Especially when they are a fizzy sweet treat. Ever since the Vegan Store discontinued their penny sweet range there has been a sweet-shaped hole in my diet – since then there are a few other brands who have given us fizzy sweets, and Need Sweets are one of those!
When Need Sweets got in touch to let me know about their new business, I was super excited! Everything on the site is vegetarian or vegan, and clearly labelled. Heaven. I am absolutely in love with the Fizzy Fish – they remind me of being a kid. And also because they are Trout-shaped. They taste like crunchy bursts of sherbet, so good. And fizzy cola bottles have always been a firm favourite! They also offer marshmallows, fudge, coconut ice, kola cubes, flying saucers… Now they just need to make jelly beans vegan!
Did everyone have a nice Valentine’s Day? Mid-morning I was delighted to receive a huge bunch of flowers, with a reference to Breaking Bad. This guy knows what I like, haha! I didn’t think he could top last year’s flowers, which were a reference to The Office, but I think he might just have! Rasputin was pretty smitten with them, too. Oh that cat – he just loves to chew on plastic. Sigh.
When I got home from the soup-run in the evening, I found Trout cooking up a storm! He made the most amazing 2-and-a-half course meal, including one of my favourite foods; bruschetta. That is one sweet man.
Do you love sweets? Have you tried Need Sweets? How was your Valentine’s Day?
Oh, Valentine’s Day – you’re finally here! I do love a day dedicated entirely to love. This morning I snuck downstairs just before 7am and baked up a batch of croissants for my love. Even Rasputin received something through the post from his lover Garth the Hedgehog!
♥ I love Trout & Rasputin (duh)
♥ I love my family & friends
♥ I love roasting vegetables with cumin
♥ I love reading beautiful words
♥ I love freshly ground coffee
♥ I love the floral bouquets that Jodie Carey exhibited at the Alexia Goethe gallery in 2008
♥ I love drinking red wine in half-darkness
♥ I love conversations that you never expect to happen
♥ I love watching The Head and the Heart videos
♥ I love Breaking Bad
♥ I love burgers and pizza
♥ I love seeing the Flatliners live
♥ I love evenings spent with sweet friends
Happy Valentine’s Day! Did you celebrate?
I know, I know. It’s Wednesday – but I have no Wishes for you, I’m sorry. It’s Valentine’s Day tomorrow, so busy yourself with last week’s post and get crafting! Last night we went to see Frightened Rabbit who were amazing. The only downside is that I’ve been feeling a little under the weather lately and had to sit down and watch it from the bar, which essentially felt like watching the show on youtube. I managed to catch a few songs at the end but paid for that by feeling super nauseous on the (long) walk home. Weird.
This morning I had my job centre appointment, so to cheer myself up I put on a colourful outfit. I rarely wear these trousers, as I’m never sure that these legs should be wearing such a fitted trouser, but they are my favourite colour and I love how they go with these shoes.
This week I’m thankful for finally ‘meeting’ Emma & baby Leo, and having the best 2hr skype date, strawberry flavoured chewing gum, inspiring words, pepsi max, breaking bad, miranda july, live music and receiving exciting parcels in the post.
Here are the things that are inspiring me this week:
+ this post from Wily Brunette on sadness and heartache and hope
+ a post on taking a break and sipping coffee - much needed, from Sandra Juto
+ a celebration of cupcakes on A Beautiful Mess. Sigh, it’s been so long since I’ve had a cupcake
+ roasted potatoes and brussel sprouts from Oh She Glows – I can tell you, this recipe is delicious!
+ the sweetest notebook on The Only Place, which reminds me just how much I love Berlin
+ so many cat pictures on The Dainty Squid!
+ carrot soup with chickpea croutons – holy yum! – from Smitten Kitchen
+ this short film on love and donating e-cards to raise awareness for the lovely charity Hearing Dogs
+ Philip Lim Fall ’13, feat. on Honestly WTF – absolutely love the paneled jackets and printed trousers
What’s inspiring you this week?
Life lately has included job-hunting, interviews, writing, reading beautiful words and listening to Fiona Apple live on repeat. I’m also trying to avoid anything pancake-related – I know I’m in the minority, but they really make me feel sick just thinking about them! I don’t mind thick American-style pancakes, but I cannot bare crepes or thin pancakes or anything of the sort.
Sometimes I just need to look through some really old photographs of Rasputin when he was a kitten, because really it makes the day a little easier. Gosh, he was so tiny and sweet back then. Look how big his ears are! He’s sleeping next to me at the end of the sofa, in almost the same position, and it’s pretty much the cutest comparison ever.
We’re going to see Frightened Rabbit tonight, and I’m so excited. I’ve never seen them before, and I can only imagine how good they are going to be live.
How is your Tuesday going? Are you celebrating Pancake Day today?
On Saturday me and a group of friends decided to go on a roadtrip up to Margate to watch our local team play football. It’s much closer than I thought it would be – only two hours drive from Brighton – and I got to see a Shetland pony on the way, so that made the journey super fun. A friend and I drove up earlier in the day to look around the Turner Contemporary gallery, and I’m so glad that we did. Although the building is really quite large and stands looking out to the ocean, there were only two artists exhibiting and both were really lovely. Carl Andre had some amazing wooden sculptures and copper plates – it was curated in such a beautiful and interactive way. There were huge quotes on the walls and large pieces to walk around. It felt so wrong to step on the plates which were set out on the floor!
His words were really simple – the way that he talked about his work wasn’t like other artists. He separated himself from them, and the art scene in general. This quote definitely makes me stop and think; it relates so much to the work that I made.
The second artist was Rosa Barba, whose work had a combination of mechanical pieces with words and projectors. It was a strange room – peaceful but at the same time ticking by with clicks and movement and rotation and space. It was so nice to visit a new gallery and spend the morning talking about art.
I’m very sad that I didn’t bring my camera with me for the trip. The sea was beautiful, the architecture, the history. The only photographs I took were on my phone, of a massive Great Dane. Though, to be fair, this was pretty much the highlight of my day. We sat and sipped coffee in a sweet cafe, and the dog came and hung out with us for a bit. I still can’t believe just how big he was!
The streets are so lovely in Margate – I really wish that we’d had more time to explore – we wandered around for a little while, but not nearly as long as I would have liked. It’s definitely somewhere I would like to return to for longer, and with my camera. While I was walking around I couldn’t help but think about this post on Kate’s blog. Her photographs are so beautiful, and I wish I could have seen everything that she did.
The football was a little disappointing (we lost) but the evening that we had back in Brighton more than made up for it. My sweet friend Rach made an amazing meal for dinner, and we put together a banoffee pie which was topped with her incredible home-made caramel. Oh gosh, it was delicious. Horribly late for birthday drinks, Trout and I hopped into a taxi and went dancing with friends until the day was drawing to a close and we walked home, making sure we stopped on the way to dance in the spitting rain. It was a long day, but I think it was the best day that I’ve had in 2013. Sometimes you need to take the time out to do something different, even if it’s just stopping for a coffee in a new place, having unexpected conversations, standing and watching the sea from another perspective and ending the day feeling inspired. You have a lot to beat March, April, May… just putting that out there.
Have you been to Margate? Have you visited the Turner Contemporary?
Oh gosh, the weather is so horrible today. In Brighton it’s rain rain rain. Apparently the rain started at midday yesterday and won’t stop for 28hrs. Yuck! Last week I cooked up a big batch of soup – and this weather is definitely right for staying tucked up in the kitchen, with the warmth of a big pot bubbling away.
I followed this recipe from Bleubird, and it tasted great! I think I overdid the lentils a little bit – I would add some more liquid next time I make it, but the flavour was really yummy. I added a squeeze of lemon juice, too. I had it for lunch, but I think it would work great as an evening meal – with thick slices of freshly made bread, and a sharp, acidic salad on the side.
Today I think will be a completely lazy day – I’m still in bed, and although I have had a shower I’m back in an oversized t-shirt, tucked up in bed with Trout and Rasputin, and can’t really see this changing. This is what Sundays are made for. Yesterday was a really long and lovely day, which began with very little sleep, involved a road-trip, good food, art, the sea, a great dane, football, long conversations, sweet friends and a burlesque dancer. I’ll put together a blogpost on that another time, though.
How is your weekend going?
Hello little ones – just a quick post this morning, and a rather selfish request! I’ve been nominated for a Dorset Cereals little blog award, and it would mean so much if you guys could pop over to their website and vote for me! I would be ever so grateful. You can vote by following this link, and I’ve also popped a little button on the right hand tool bar ———>
Thankyou so much ♥
Last week I was kindly sent some coffee from Whittard - I think it must be completely clear just how much I love coffee, on this little blog of mine?! – and I tried my first cup this morning. Holy YUM it was good! I wasn’t really sure what to expect, as if I’m honest I don’t entirely know what makes a coffee a breakfast coffee (does anyone?) but it was so smooth and filled with flavour – swoon. I enjoyed a cup with a little milk and a cinnamon & raisin bagel, the perfect start to the day.
The lovely people of Whittard also sent me another pouch of coffee and a tub of caramel hot chocolate, so I will let you know what they are like as soon as I try them. They label their hot chocolate products as suitable for vegans, which I think is absolutely brilliant! They also make a Crème Brûlée flavour which is vegan – now that sounds good!
Today is filled with more job-hunting, picking up a bag that I left with my favourite shoe guy to repair and I’ve got soup-run in the evening. I think I’ll squeeze in a work-out and some yoga too, as I haven’t done any exercise other than walking since… hmm let’s not think about that actually. I really hope that this sunshine lasts, it looks so beautiful outside (although I suspect it is a little nippy-noodles). I think I might take my notebook down to my favourite coffee shop and do some writing, and maybe even finish reading that library book that I borrowed back in January….
What are your plans for today? Have you tried Whittard’s coffee or hot chocolate?
For Valentine’s Day Trout and I usually keep things fairly low-key; we’ll open a bottle of something fizzy and maybe order a pizza or make a special dinner. Valentine’s Day is pretty much my favourite pointless day of the year – there are heart-shaped things everywhere and I love love.
I thought I would combine two of my loves this week; my love of finding independent, talented crafters, designers and makers – and Valentine’s Day. You might remember last year, when I did a round-up of gift ideas – this is kind of similar. I hope it inspires you to make or buy something thoughtful for your true love. For some more inspiring images check out my love-themed Pinterest board.
Some other sweet things to make for your love:
♥ this love book from A Beautiful Mess
♥ heart-shaped ravioli from Maple Spice
♥ the sweetest envelope, made from a doily on Say Yes to Hoboken
♥ a tower of heart-shaped vegan macaroons from The Gluttonous Vegan (oh sweet friend, I do miss you)
♥ home-made teabags for your tea-loving lover, from Cupcakes and Cashmere
♥ cats and love hearts on The Dainty Squid. perfect.
♥ i love this guide to valentine’s day, from Gala Darling.
♥ this valentine’s-inspired photoshoot on Deer Circus is so fun!
Do you celebrate Valentine’s Day? How do you like to celebrate?
So this morning I woke up with the intention of working on one of my resolutions; a photo every hour. It started off ok, but then as my morning plodded along I started to realise just how boring my day-to-day life is during the week! I’ve talked a bit about my daily routine here and really there aren’t a lot of photo-opportunities (or at least interesting photo-opportunities…!) mid-week, so I decided to stop at midday and save the project for the weekend, when I’m a little busier. It seemed a shame to waste the photographs, though – so here is my morning, a photo every hour.
Tuesday 5th February
I slept in a little this morning – Ras was messing around for a lot of the night and so I didn’t wake up until around 7.30am. I stayed curled up in bed for another half an hour before dragging myself downstairs for a much needed coffee.
8am// The coffee machine was switched ON and I made myself a fresh coffee with my favourite ground beans; Small Batch. The perfect way to start the day. I spent most of the next hour catching up with emails, putting together a blog post for tomorrow and sipping coffee, whilst watching the breakfast news out of the corner of my eye.
9am//The sky was so beautiful this morning in Brighton – blue skies, fluffy clouds and bright sunshine. So lovely. We can see the sea from our flat and it looked amazing – although it was a little hard to see with the sun shining so brightly!
10am// As the highlight of my morning wasn’t on (Peter Andre: My Life, 9.40am, ITV2) I decided to take the opportunity to get up and dressed. I’ve been reading lots of blogs lately where the ladies are dressed so nicely, so I was inspired to make more of an effort than my usual leggings and oversized jumper/shirt combo that is so faithful to me. I’ve had this dress for months but I’m never sure if it looks nice on. I decided to go for it today, while I’m at home, and take it for a test-run.
11am//I snacked on an apple and sipped a pint of water while I worked. I mixed things up today and worked from our table, rather than the sofa. I planned out the blog posts I’d been dreaming up and noted them in my diary so that I know where I have gaps and where I need to put some more posts together. I also spent the morning job-hunting.
So that takes me up to now – 2pm. I’m trying to decide what to make for lunch and I’m also trying to decide what to do with myself this afternoon; staring at the same job-adverts over and over again is mind-numbing and at the moment I don’t feel like I’m getting anywhere. Not having a job is driving me crazy. I hate it – I miss having work colleagues, working hard, being able to enjoy my money and spend it how I like without feeling guilty. I’m really hoping that I find the right job soon!
Dear coffee machine,
Thank you for leaking water and coffee all over my bookcase yesterday morning at 8am, before I’d even had a coffee or my bagel. I love you, please don’t do this again. Naughty.
Thank you for helping me clean up the mess.
Dear dates & peanut butter,
You’re a match made in heaven.
You’re hard on me sometimes, and I really don’t think that I can bend that way.
Thank you for texting me, ‘POLLOS’ yesterday as I left the job centre. It made me smile.
When you cover your eyes with your paw, it’s completely the cutest thing ever.
Thank you for reading and commenting. It really makes my day when I see your words.
Dear valentine’s day,
I’m too excited, please hurry up and get here!
You too, thanks.
Dear Peter Andre,
I have waited 15 years to see you live, and I cannot quite believe that the day has finally arrived.
Why did you re-design The Bell Jar’s cover? Why have you ruined what the book stands for, in an attempt to appeal to a wider market? Did your designers even read the book?
new music: 1
favourite food: toasted sandwiches
resolutions kept: 6
I found some notes inside my library book, spent New Years in Hamburg and ate plenty of good food! I worked on a 5-day project with Alpro which I loved! I featured a couple of posts which were a little more personal; I wrote a little list of things about me and Trout, and gave you an insight into my day. I’ve been continuing with Wednesday Wishes, and falling in love with so many things. I introduced you to a few of my newest favourite blogs. We celebrated Burns Night with vegan haggis, neeps & tatties, and I made some lovely salads with pomegranates. It snowed, I spent time with my grandparents, have spent most of my time job-hunting and hanging out with Rasputin, and received so many lovely things in the post!
In terms of my resolutions: I have been going to DanceFit for 4 weeks now, and so in love with the class! I’m trying to get my 30 mins exercise per day – a combination of walking, yoga and working out.//I am currently blogging almost everyday (24/31) which is pretty much where I would like to be. Ideally it would be more around the 28/31 mark, but you can’t force blogposts out! I haven’t taken part in the ‘photograph per hour‘ challenge which I would have liked to, but I know that this will come in time. I definitely want to work with more brands that I think create fantastic products and make vegan life so much more fun and delicious.//I’ve been writing more, and although I’ve only read one book it’s more than I’ve managed in the last few months!//I did try a few new recipe, and have been eating less chocolate, and made some raw treats. So I suppose that was a success!//I’ve been getting out and about a lot more, but that’s due to being at home – I’m not sure I’ll be able to keep it up once I have a full-time job! We went to the cinema to see Django Unchained which was amazing, and I’m planning on going to see Les Miserables as soon as possible.//I haven’t bought myself a single thing since around November – me and my sister are planning a trip to London in February to spend the vouchers that I was given for Christmas, so that will be a nice treat and something to look forward to.//
How was your January? I hope it was lovely!
Did you make any resolutions, and if so how are they going?
Happy Wednesday! I hope that everyone has had a lovely week so far.
We’re half-way through, and it’s time for another edition of Wednesday Wishes!
What a beautiful cuff. The combination of brass and moostone is lovely.//I’m really into boyfriend jeans at the moment – and these are so beautiful. I love the colour and the shape, they’re perfect.//This polka dot shirt is so cute! Plus it would go perfectly with the boyfriend jeans above!// Add a pop of colour with these great heels. I love the shape, and a bargain price at under £23.//
Cuff – Laurel Hill, $129//Jeans – Citizens of Humanity, £230//
T-shirt – Zara, £19.99//Shoes – Zara, £22.99
Dress – Storey Threads, $98//Plate – Charlotte Mei, £40//Coasters – Uncommon, $19
I’m been searching for a vegan version of this style of clutch for so long, and finally I’ve found one!//This cardigan is so sweet! I love the pattern and the shape of the neckline.//These shoes are so much fun! They would match with the boyfriend jeans really nicely.//I love how simple this dress is – the textured print is so lovely, and the shape is casual enough for the day but could be dressed up for the evening.//
Clutch – label here, $45//Cardigan – Peacocks, £18//
Shoes – ASOS, £35//Dress – Massimo Dutti, £79.95
A few more loves…
+ this article from A Beautiful Mess on leading an inspired life. Strive to impress yourself, live a life that you are proud of – and forget what other people think.
+ the sweet smiles of Naomi’s children. If I’m lucky enough to have babies in the future, I can only hope that they are half as happy as Eleanor and Samson seem to be!
+ this brilliantly simple outfit by Emily at Cupcakes and Cashmere.
+ i’ve had this tutorial bookmarked in my Things to Make folder for so long – I really should get around to making a few.
+ another article that I’ve had saved in my Inspiration folder for a couple of months, on the daily routines of writers.
Do you have any Wednesday Wishes?
I would also like to wish my motherbear a very happy birthday!
I stumbled upon this quote this morning, and it completely made sense to me. When I was creating artwork it was a long process of research, digesting information, considering different angles, turning these thoughts into a piece (an actual piece of work, a body of work, a drawing, a sentence, a thought). At times it felt as though I was spending too long on something; that my time could be spent more productively, I should be moving quicker, realising the answer faster, deciding on the material sooner. But it doesn’t work like that. So when a process can take weeks (months), I would often think that I should be doing something else. For me, writing is something different. It can be much more instant. I can write something that I’m happy with in less than an hour, less than ten minutes, in a few seconds, and it can satisfy me in many of the same ways that making artwork once did. Maybe in more ways. When I’m writing it’s like there is a bubble around my brain and I’m really not aware of anything around me; there is a connection between my brain and my fingertips that lets the thoughts and words collecting in my brain pour out (bleed out) onto the screen, and when I take a moment to breath and read through it, I can’t remember what has been going on in those last few minutes. It’s like a blank sequence, or a pause in time.
What do you find inspiring? How do you like to be creative?