Harry Potter Studio Tour.
In January I got to visit the Harry Potter studio tour thanks to my best friend Lisa who bought my ticket as a birthday present! I am such a huge fan of the Harry Potter book and movies, so this was such a great present! This means I also got to tick one thing off my 14 in 2014!
The experience exceeded my expectations! I knew it was good but oh my, it was SO good! I got to go with Lisa and my really good friend from uni, Kirsty! I was also on crutches as I had dislocated my knee a few days before from skating hence the bit fat bandage on my leg.
I won't post too many photos as I don't want to spoil anything! I was amazed at how big the place was and all the things you could do, LIKE RIDE A BROOM! It was so much fun and you got to see props/costumes from the movies, also some of the set and how things were filmed. It blew my mind. I did Media Production at University and it really made me wish I was involved in the filming industry, alas I have neither any experience or money to be able to afford to pay my way through unpaid work experience with companies.
I would recommend bringing quite a bit of money as the choice of souvenirs is huge! I really wanted a Gryffindor top and a wand but they were way out of my price range as they costed over £20 each so I just bought the photo of me riding the broom and a chocolate frog for Joey, which tastes like advent calendar chocolate but that doesn't surprise me! You also got a Wizard/Witch card with the chocolate frog and we got Helga Hufflepuff! I really wanted Dumbledore but I guess he's one of the really rare ones! Also it's definitely worth trying the Butterbeer and if you can afford it, also get the Butterbeer Stein glass! It's so cool and a great souvenir!
I had such a great time with the girls and really cannot wait to come back again with Joey!
While I was in London, I organised to meet up with my other good friend from Uni, Pete! We all went for Nando's, which brought back memories of uni as I would drag anyone there at any given opportunity! Hah. It was great catching up over food and a few drinks at the Porterhouse in Covent Garden which has the biggest beer menu I have ever seen! I went for the fruity beers and my favourite was the Mango beer. Yum!!
After two fun filled days in London full of catch ups, good company and good food, Lisa and I made our way to Lincoln for a short visit but of course we had to stop by Platform 9 and 3/4 while we were at Kings Cross station! Really touristy but I loved it!
I had such a great time and it was definitely worth the money and travelling!
Big move #3
The time to move is slowly creeping up on me.
It will be my third big move of my life.
I have moved A LOT, a total of 11 times in 9 years.
Ever since having to move from home to here in the UK (big move #1) and going to boarding school which meant each year I was there, we had to pack up our stuff at the end of each academic year and endure a 16/18 hour flight home for 2 and a half months of glorious warm weather and family time before returning and being assigned different dorms. So the 4 years (of hell) I was in school in the UK, I had 4 different dorms and when I was at University I moved 4 times before making big move #2 to Bournemouth which was one of the best decisions of my life because it meant that I could cut loose all ties with anyone who was holding me down or making my life a living hell. However, a year and a half later, I'll be packing up my life again and moving to Wales for my third big move.
I'll be honest, I'm sick of moving not because of how much packing/organising that needs to be done but because I've never felt at home since coming to the UK.
Don't get me wrong, I'm excited to move to Wales because there are so many exciting plans for the future but for years, I have pined for somewhere to call home ever since the place I call home isn't home anymore as my family have moved back here to the UK. I feel guilty for thinking this because my parents have made their house the comfiest and nicest place they can but I've never lived there so don't feel like it's home to me.
I know that there will be a few more moves in the future but I hope they are less frequent. I cannot wait to build my life with Joey and I cannot wait for the day I get to finally call somewhere home.
I came across this on Tumblr.
That is the cruel thing about life, you pine so much for somewhere to call home yet you're luckier than a lot of people having grown up in beautiful places knowing you can go back and be welcomed back with arms wide open. I'm lucky having met all kinds of great people from different walks of life. I just need to learn to find a balance with this.
Defend the Palace!
Oh my. I can honestly say I have never seen a game of live roller derby like I did last Saturday. I am still in awe at the amazing footwork and epic blocking that I saw.
I have been re-playing the bout in my head and analysing all the footwork and how I would put it into practice for when I am back on skates as I am determined to skate at the crazy level that the London Rollergirls skate at. I knew they were really good, but watching a bout on a crappy live stream is nothing compared to a live bout and I am so glad I went to watch it as it has made me even more determined to up my game when I get back! Watch out Dorset ;)
I am really excited to try out a few things that I saw at the bout especially after watching intensely, a lot of things just clicked! Especially with the blocking, as I was just in awe at how well they stayed on the Jammer and were almost invincible, this was mostly down to the footwork and communication! I always try my best to communicate but I haven’t really put into practice all the footwork drills that our coach has made us do and I feel guilty and stupid for not doing it as now I see how effective and important it is!
I know our coach teaches us things for a reason but I think when you aren’t completely sure why or how it will be effective, it can seem boring but after that bout it really opened my eyes and the derby bug is reviving itself within me. I put it down to also being injured and being off skates, it does show you how important it is to look after yourself and to STOP when you know something isn’t right instead of carrying on and making the problem worse which is what I did and not only did it mean I was off skates for a few weeks, I also had to give my place up in an upcoming bout which deeply upset me and I was kicking myself so hard for it.
Injury is almost inevitable in sport and I was lucky enough to get support from not only my team mates but also a fellow injured skater and blogger, Florence The Machine, she has not only listened to me ramble on but also offered advice which has helped me a lot especially making sure I don’t rush back before I am 100% healed as I could face worse injuries. She also has an “Injury Series” that she write about in her blog and reading it has opened up my eyes to other sides of roller derby that I’ve neglected such as benching which I have been doing when it comes to scrimming during sessions and not only has it made me forget about my injury but it has also helped me learn the rules a lot better and still feel the excitement of the game. It is worth reading and keeping up to date with her progress even if you aren’t injured as she has written a lot of valuable things to keep in mind I case you do get injured in the future. Flo, I hope you get better really soon and hopefully see you on the track one day J
My first ever blogger event!
8th February was one of the best days so far this year. I got to attend my first ever blogger event thanks to InLoveWithFashion and I also got to watch the sold out London Rollergirls Defend The Palace bout! It was an exciting but exhausting day!
I’ll will be splitting the post into two, otherwise it will seem never ending. This post is dedicated to InLoveWithFashion’s first LFA (Love Fashion Academy).
I was nervous and worried that everyone would just think I’m some kind of loser as my blog was pretty new and I didn’t have a big following. I was getting so anxious and almost didn’t attend but I made myself go because it would such a waste not taking up this great opportunity.
I wore my new tartan dress and boater hat from Ark.co.uk that I was meant to be saving for my Valentines date with Joey but I just had to wear it for this event. I paired my outfit with my favourite little black shoes and gold accessories that I nabbed in the christmas sales for £1!
It was such a brilliant event and I am so lucky to have been able to attend, especially being such a new blogger too. I was made to feel so welcomed and the girls, Coco, Sophie and Naomi, were beyond lovely making sure that everyone was ok and also joining in with conversations!
I was so nervous and didn’t know what to expect but luckily for me, a lot of the girls were in the same boat and I met a few girls who was also at their very first blogger event! It was so lovely meeting some of the girls and exchanging Instagram usernames so we could find each others blogs! I met two lovely and beautiful girls who really made me feel at ease, Kirsty and Georgie, I spoke to them a lot during the event and they were so so lovely and it was all our first event so we were quite nervous! Hopefully I’ll get to meet up with these girls again especially as Georgie lives in sunny Bournemouth which is great as it's nice to have a great blogger close to me and hopefully get to see Kirsty for lots of cake when I make trips to Lincoln to visit my best friends!
The LFA girls did a talk about the company, reasons why they set up LFA and why they wanted us bloggers involved.
It was so inspiring listening to the girls talk about their journey to where they are now and it made me so determined to keep on with blogging as I have been going through a bit of a horrible time (mainly with things in my head) but realised that it shouldn’t stop me blogging as I can use it as a positive way of releasing my frustrations of everything that has been happening.
The showroom was full of their S/S 2014 collection, which mainly consisted of pastels, which I absolutely adored and cannot wait to get my hands on some of them!
They also held a sample sale at such bargain prices but it was all in size 8 or a S and my waist or boobs would not be able to squeeze into them! There were also plenty of refreshments from Sassy drinks and Vivid drinks to yummy (but messy) Krispy Kreme donuts! Yum!
They also gave out a goodie bag filled with such generous contents that included a £50 voucher and loyalty card for the InLoveWithFashion webstore, snacks/drinks (from Sassy drinks, Vivid drinks and ProperCorn), the CUTEST ring from Daisy Mae Jewellery, a discount code for my all time favourite hair accessory shop Crown and Glory, Barry M make-up and false eyelashes!
I am already looking forward to their next event, if they will have me back obviously! :)
10 days ago, I only went and passed MY DRIVING TEST! Finally! I get to tick one thing off my 14 in 2014 list! YAY!
I got 4 minors and this was my second test!
I was nervous and broke down on my lesson before my test. I have a bad habit of kicking myself when it comes to anything I do as I have hardly any confidence in myself. My lovely instructor, Andy, calmed me down and gave me a bit of a pep talk which I desperately needed.
I am pretty silly when it comes to "luck". I wore two things that I felt would bring me luck so I wore my gorgeous custom Kawaii name necklace from DrownSoda
and my favourite trainers that Joey bought me. I've read about some of the weirdest things that people feel bring them luck but if it makes you feel more calm, then why not?
During my test, I just thought to myself "What will be, will be" and it really helped calm my nerves as we all make mistakes and as long as I am calm then it's fine. I did make a few mistakes but I didn't panic and made sure that I was looking at my mirrors/blind spots. After the test, I was sure I failed and made the biggest gasp when they told me I PASSED! The feeling was so overwhelming and I had to stop myself from crying. All the hard work paid off and I should have listened to my instructor when he told me I was a good driver and that I could do it!
A few tips that I picked up while learning to drive:
1) Listen to your instructor when he tell you that you ARE good enough. He knows better than you and wouldn't say that to you if it wasn't true. - This is something that I found it hard to accept.
2) Trust your instinct. Do not panic and rush to do anything just cause another car did it. Better to be safe than sorry, trust me. I can't count the amount of times I panicked and my instructor had to slam the breaks down, it is scary and it isn't worth the risk so take your time!
3) DRAW! Yes, draw all of the different manouvers if it helps you remember it. I learn better with pictures so this really helped me remember what I had to do for what manouver.
4) Ask your instructor anything. Honestly, if you are unsure about ANYTHING, ask him/her. They are there to help you and more than happy to help answer anything especially if you are confused about something you've read about. You'll be surprised at how much you'll learn and understand things better.
5) Do not compare yourself to other people from your siblings to your friends. Try to pass for YOURSELF. It's not worth working yourself up to try and pass first time as you will be more nervous than necessary and it will go against you. If you pass you pass, if not you get to try again.
If you have any tips, please feel free to share!
Now to save up for my own car!
Rock N Roller Derby
I hope you are all fab! Today is turning out to be a good day, minus the rain of course!
I hit just over 100 followers on twitter, now just to get my bloglovin' to 100 followers! Thank you for your continued support on blog forums, twitter and instagram! This blog just hit it's 1 month birthday and despite it being so new, I have had great support from so many people! I am so grateful and cannot wait to see what 2014 hold for me.. I have super exciting news to announce soon but I have to wait until all the final details have been sorted but it'll be really good for this blog!
I am just writing a quick post more for the roller derby people of the world! I was lucky enough to have been approached by Em Balmer of Rock N Roller Derby at the end of 2012 to be her product reviewer! Of course I said yes and it has helped me so much with my writing and knowledge of products relevant to my sport.
It's been a pretty fun year in the derby world for Dorset Roller Girls and I have been lucky especially during bouts to test out some of the products from wheels for certain floors to 187 Killer Pro knee pads and a HardNutz helmet! Most of which I now own thanks to Em Balmer. She is very good to work with and is very good to me. Not only is she hard working, she is always happy to help with anything and she never gives up despite the world throwing every possible thing her way.
Feel free to contact her or myself for help or information on products featured on her website! If you want to read my reviews, they are here. There isn't a lot at the moment but it will grow bigger as the year goes on! My review on the Radar Diamonds will be up later this evening after it has been proof read!
Edit: My Radar Diamond review is up on the Rock N Roller Derby website. Click here to read!
I love cooking but sadly cannot cook all the lovely things I'd love to cook due to living on such a tight budget every month. I literally scrape the barrell when it comes to buying food. I'm not embarrassed having to buy supermarket own brands, it's really cheap and more or less has what more expensive brands have in terms of ingredients. Plus, it's all I can afford! My budget for food and toiletries is £50 maximum and sometimes I only have about £30 on a really tough month.
I am going to show you my favourite budget dish to cook. Lamb stew! This meal is not only one of the best home comfort food, it is so easy to make, makes enough for about 5 meals and is pretty good for you too!
Asda Smart Price Lamb: £3
Mixed Peppers: £1
Carrots: £1 (I used about 5 carrots and have a lot left!)
Bag of onions: £1 (I used two onions and you have the rest for other meals!)
Oxo cubes: £1.19
Aunt Bessie's Original Gravy granules: £1 (to thicken up the stew!)
Total cost: £9.99. If you're calculating precisely on how much of the ingredients you use, it works out about roughly £7 as I didn't use all the onions, carrots, oxo cubes or gravy granules!
This batch made 5 meals in total so it works out £1.40 a dish and these are very generous portions too which is why I love making this and it is so satisfying!
Right, firstly fill the kettle and let it boil then chop the onions.
Then I sweat them for a bit before adding the lamb (just brown the meat!)! DO NOT fully cook the lamb or it will be tough!
I got my lovely flatmate Vikki to peel the carrots for me while I made sure I didn't burn the onions or lamb. Once the meat has been browned, add quite a lot of water! Enough to cover all the ingredients as it will reduce down!
When the carrots were peeled, I chopped the carrots followed by the red peppers (the green would be too bitter for this dish) and celery!
Look at the colours! All these different flavours really makes this dish super tasty!
Dump everything into the pan and add about 2 oxo cubes! Put it on a medium heat for about 30 minutes then a low heat for the final 30 minutes!
I had to put them into two different pans in the end as I couldn't fit them in one... After the hour is up, add the gravy granules bit by bit and stir to thicken it! I like mine fairly thick so added a fair bit of the granules to it! Then presto! Serve it up and enjoy! So so easy to make and it doesn't put a huge dent in your wallet!
You could also make carrot mash if you wanted with the spare carrots or you could even have yorkshire pudding with it too!
If you have any budget friendly meals to share, please leave a comment :)