A tale of DIY, Wembley and food!!

This week has been all about the food! It started off with me being very conscientious and taking in a fleet of snacks to last me all day. As Monday is always a very heavy snack day for me as after the weekend I find it hard to get back into my normal food routine, plus when I get bored I tend to reach for the sugar based snacks – is that the case for anyone else? Then on Monday night I went out to dinner with work peeps to The Yard in Shoreditch, which is an old converted fire station. Man is that place amazing or what!? We ended up sharing a yard of pizza with four different toppings, each topping seemed to be better than the first. I honestly can’t recommend this place enough for food goodness! Wednesday was another night of good food as I was at Wembley for the England match and we had burgers beforehand in the stadium. I opted for the halloumi and mushroom one which was delicious – the addition of a smidge of pesto to the burger made such a difference and was a lovely change to sweet chilli.

Saturday saw me back at the parentals so of course we had to go out for dinner, duh! We went to The Seahorse, which I’ve mentioned before, see here. The food is lovely and the atmosphere is always so relaxed too. Plus I love the decor – please can I have the table below next time? I’d love to eat in my own little wooden area whilst sat on a sofa – so cute!  As for the food it was scrumptious, of course! Lau and I shared camembert and focaccia to start with, then I had the cheese burger and mushroom with brilliantly skinny chips followed by the sticky toffee pudding with vanilla ice cream – ah-maze-ing. I honestly can’t recommend that place enough. I love it and I think it might become our go=to restaurant when we’re back at home.

As for other things I’ve been up to, well I decided to start the week with a two-mile run at 6am on Monday morning, the logic being I wouldn’t feel guilty about the pizza – it totally worked! Although I’m not sure I’ll be doing the same every week (this week definitely not). I then was rubbish with exercise until Sunday when I went for a 4.3 mile run in the countryside. Painful and hard but rewarding! There was also a trip to Primark, where I was meant to return stuff and actually ended up buying more…oops! Then there was the trip to Wembley where thankfully England beat Scotland, let’s be honest it was seeming like we wouldn’t for a while there. Whilst the England team weren’t the most convincing it was an amazing atmosphere, possibly the best atmosphere I’ve ever experienced at Wembley.

Friday was a bit of a write off as I felt really ill – I had the headache of all headaches from about 5pm on Thursday until mid Friday – painful and knackering. I hate how rubbish I am when I get no sleep or have a headache – I just can’t handle anything. As for the weekend Lau and I had such a productive time, we did lots of crafty stuff (frosting jars and vases as well as something involving glitter and glue) – I’ll share that with you for Pinterest Corner on Wednesday and finally decided on a colour scheme and some DIY projects for our new look living room. I’m so excited about it I can barely wait to get started! I also managed to find lots of bits and bobs to pop in my Christmas gift  box (there’s nothing wrong with being prepared) AND super excitingly I managed to find my new blog planner which I’ve been needing/wanting/searching for for ages – hooray to me. This blog planner has already worked wonders, not only am I super organised I’ve also been having loads of ideas, hooray!

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A four day week…

This ‘lately’ post is a little earlier than usual and that’s because I’m now on my hollibobs – hooray to me! – and I won’t be able to update as per usual on Monday morning. As I’ve actually got some interesting (in my humble opinion) things to share I thought I’d post this on day one of the holiday so you don’t miss out! I’m so kind like that aren’t I?!

So apart from working like a crazy thing to get everything done on time before six whole days off I’ve also been:

  • To the premiere of Red 2 in Leicester Square, squeee! There was flashing lights, a red carpet, free pop chips, celeb spots (both good – Bruce Willis, Helen Mirren and Mary Louise Parker – and bad – John Fashanu and Vanessa Feltz!) and a freaking brilliant film. Definitely get watching it once it’s out across the UK – it’s hilarious!!
  • Treating myself to a haircut, and I’m totally in love with it. It looks and feels sooooo much better. Why don’t I get it cut more often?
  • Discovering Caffe Nero’s frappe lattes and boy are they good. I need them in my life big time.
  • Enjoying a mid-week BBQ at the parentals. Excellent plan – good food and great company.
  • Enjoying rush hour in a rural village – see picture below. Quiet or what?!
  • Getting a horrific lack of sleep thanks to the heat and our annoying loud neighbours.
  • Panic shopping for a wedding outfit after an outfit crisis. Thank goodness for Primark and hello to my brand new turquoise dress. Gorgeous.
  • Having lots of fun on eBay and managed to sell a Primark skirt on there for a small fortune.
  • Gaining a new gorgeous patchwork quilt – see below. Thanks Mum, isn’t she skilled? She makes them by HAND AND WITHOUT A SEWING MACHINE! Wowzers!
  • Packing – eurgh I’ve packed far too much for one week away. Oh well!

Powder paint, a wedding and an epic BBQ

Amazing!

Amazing!

This week has been brilliant and full of lots of fun times, things like:

  • An evening stroll
  • 2.4 mile run in 30° heat (no idea how I survived that!)
  • Free tickets to Charlie and the Chocolate Factory – thanks work! It was just as brilliant a second time and our seats were awesome too.
  • A picnic in the park with lovely friends and new acquaintances – I do love this sunshine that’s arrived.
  • Zero lie-ins (Okay so not such a brilliant thing!)
  • An epic BBQ back at the parentals, I provided one of five (!) puddings plus we had three chickens and all that meat for 15 of us. Like I said, epic!!
  • Sneaky snacks on the bus. Sometimes after a dreadful day at work you have to give in to the peanut m&m’s craving.
  • Saturday saw me heading to the back of beyond,okay North London, for a friend’s wedding. It was absolutely beautiful, they make such a cute couple and everything was so lovely. There was also penny sweets including Percy Pigs – genius!
  • Multiple iced mochas. Delicious.
  • The Color Run! This is a 5k that you run and at each kilometre you get pelted with powder paint. Such fun!! And great to run around Wembley Stadium too!Wwhat wasn’t so great was the heat, bleurgh!
  • TV time: Castle, How I met your Mother and m&m’s. Perfect.

This week I’ve….

  • Enjoyed a lovely family dinner at Carluccio’s. Not only did I eat a ridiculous amount of food – chicken liver pate, gnocchi and lemon and almond loaf cake – but I also drank the most amazingly chocolatey mocha. It was such a thick drink that I almost felt like I was drinking melted chocolate. It was incredibly naughty yet totally blissful too!
  • Been treated to some delicious TimTam’s – thanks lovely cousins. Who knew there were vanilla cream ones now – they are amazing!
  • Enjoyed spending a small fortune on books from eBay.
  • Rediscovered The Big Bang Theory and as a result I’ve been laughing all weekend!
  • Enjoyed some marvelous books – Vampire Academy and some brilliant James Patterson books – sometimes you just need to treat yourself to some guilty pleasures and easy reads.
  • Stressing about the amount I have on my credit card and yet buying things left, right and centre too. Like these shoes – perfect for my Dublin trip in a couple of weeks – and this DVD.
  • Munching on Milka, bought back by the parentals from Portugal – thanks very much!
  • Baking Lorraine Pascal’s Lemon, Lime and Poppy-seed cake – totally delicious FYI.
  • Been at the gym at 7am – yes I am a freak. But it was actually a really good way to start the day and I managed to complete another couple of miles running and even some weights – although my arms have been suffering ever since!
  • Having a brilliant time with friends at our ‘Guilty Pleasures’ night. This involved classic films like Jerry Maguire and Step Up, delicious food – Eton Mess, Pesto Pinwheels, the aforementioned cake, Dutch Apple Cake, a Charcuterie board, party rings, Scotch Eggs, Sausage Rolls and a quiz. Fun times indeed!
  • Run along the river for four miles – whoop to me!
  • Watched Man of Steel. As for my thoughts on this, well I did enjoy it and it wasn’t as bad as everyone said BUT it did seem to be missing an emotional heart and good characterisation. I mean it was so focused on the fights and the CGI and it really would have benefited from more time spent developing the characters a little bit. Plus with all the toing and froing to his childhood it got a little bit annoying. But it did entertain me and it was enjoyable. Just not to my super-high expectations.I really shouldn’t have expected another Batman Begins should I.
  • Fallen in love with a star t-shirt from Gap, if I don’t wear it with my star jeans it’s okay to buy it right? Also have you seen these gorgeous Gap shoes – I need them in my life!
  • Finally visited Del’ Aziz in Clapham Old Town. It totally lived up to my expectations and the food was scrumptious. I must go back again soon to try all the other items on the menu, as if they taste even half as good as my portobello scrambled eggs did I will be very happy!
  • Treated myself to multiple Starbucks mochas. Although I failed to do so on Friday and the day was dreadful – what was I thinking, have I not learned anything in my life!
  • Celebrated friends birthdays with Ben’s Cookies, lovely pressies and M&S treats – did you know they now do Lemon Meringue cookies. Um wow, they are delicious!
  • Been traumatised by the most recent episode of Nashville and the trailer for next week’s – OMG. I don’t know how I’ll be able to handle it. Somebody help me!

New books, playing at tourist and fun with friends

I’ve had the best few days, thanks to some wicked touristy fun, which I’ll share another day, and lots of fun with friends. I think I could definitely get used to just working a three day week you know. It would be lovely to then go off gallivanting around the UK having fun and seeing the sights – what fun!! So anyway what have I been up to?

  • Well first off I’m very excited that I’ve finally rediscovered my reading gene and as such I’ve had to choose some new books this week. After much deliberation I went with the very first Vampire Academy. My reasoning: it’s lighter for my commute. Yes really.
  • My brand new Clothbound Penguin Classics arrived this week. The new books in my collection are: Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, Gulliver’s Travels, Tess of the D’Urbervilles, Sense and Sensibility and Treasure Island. Don’t they look beautiful on my newly arranged shelves?
  • I had another fish finger sandwich and West Wing night with friends last week and it was aces. Although it saddens me that the series is so very close to ending again. The only positive: I can’t remember what’s still to happen!!
  • I realised this week that sometimes it’s worth leaving the office for a full hour, even if it might seem like you’re too busy it’s definitely good to have a proper catch up with a friends. Let’s be honest however long you spend at your desk, there’s still loads to do. so you might as well make the most of your lunch when you can.
  • Two fun-filled days of being a tour guide around London, including stops at The Tower of London, St. Paul’s (don’t judge me for not going all the way to the top, I’m a scaredy cat), The Tate Modern and Harrods. It was seriously fun to be a tourist in my own city as there’s so much stuff I always mean to see and never quite get round too.
  • A trip to see Charlie and the Chocolate Factory Musical in the West End. I won’t spoil it for anyone who is going, I’ll just say this: it’s epic, everything you imagine and so so much more. The children and the scenes where they get chased by squirrels, shrunk, sucked up, etc are absolutely wonderful.
  • I spent a lovely weekend playing tourist in Bath. Again I had an absolute ball. The city is wonderful, the Baths are so interesting and beautiful and our hotel was a haven in the middle of the Wiltshire countryside.
  • I learnt that my Aussie cousins think it’s normal to have cold ice cream and hot custard together as a pudding. I was actually appalled, it looked so wrong.

Learnings from a jam-packed week of fun

What I’ve learnt over the last week or so…

  • A work party can be fun! Our work Summer party was on Monday and it was lovely, there was lots of nattering with lovely people, beautiful views over the Thames and scrumptious canapes, although I could have done with two or three more to be honest!
  • Even a short run is good for me. I went for three runs this week, two were super tiny (just over a mile) but the other was for a full 30 minutes and I ran 4.8km. That’s the fastest I’ve ever run that distance. Whoopee to me! Even though two of the runs were super short I still felt loads better after doing them (and less guilty about eating Malteasers!).
  • A Leon sausage sandwich is still not as delicious as a Leon sausage sandwich circa. 2010. Why? I deduced it’s to do with a distinct lack of tomato sauce and the wholemeal muffin not tasting as scrumptious as it used to.
  • Free coffee is always a winner – thanks Leon for letting me fill out a tiny survey in exchange for a mocha, you made my Wednesday.
  • Sometimes only a McDonald’s will do for dinner, sorry yummy bacon and lentil soup you just weren’t going to cut it as a dinner choice. On this subject, sometimes only a bowl of cereal will work for dinner too.
  • Trying to calm a situation with an angry customer by yelling and threatening the police, will not diffuse a situation.
  • There is nothing more depressing than going for a run, ending at the supermarket with the idea of treating yourself to a certain food item for dinner and it not being there. Sadness 😦
  • China town on a Friday night is not the world’s speediest place to eat, but the food scrumptious. Is it acceptable to eat chinese for lunch on a Monday, as I’m so tempted I can almost taste the prawn crackers
  • It’s impossible to leave H&M having not purchased anything
  • Karaoke with friends and cocktails is the best way to spend a Friday night
  • I’m pretty darn good at ‘Listen’, ‘Never Ever Ever Getting Back Together’ and ‘Total Eclipse of the Heart’ and when it comes to karaoke – no really!
  • The Harry Potter Studio Tour is still brilliant the second time round. I saw loads of things I missed the first time round, I was still in awe of loads of it and I prefered the taste of Butterbeer this time round
  • Coffee is still the only thing that can get me through the day
  • A lazy afternoon on the sofa is my favourite thing
  • J. K. Rowling’s imagination is amazing, and it never ceases to amaze me
  • Meeting friends for a quick coffee and chat is awesome
  • Homemade pizzas are the best
  • I’m lucky that my work week wasn’t as crazy as some of my colleagues. I’m seriously worried for their sanity and health
  • Finishing two books and starting a third in one sitting is one of the best feelings, especially after the last few months of reading issues
  • Esio Trot, a Roald Dahl book about a tortoise, is actually tortoise spelt backwards. MIND BLOWN!
  • The Penguin Bookchase board game is one of my favourite board games ever
  • Even after a day of stuffing my face with picnic food I can still find space for Pringles and Peri
  • There’s always space for Malteasers and Mars mix, even at midnight when you’re full of pizza dough
  • The latest episode of Game of Thrones was heart-breaking. I’m glad I didn’t see it coming but I’m still so distraught over it. I don’t know if I can handle tonight’s episode, how can they get more shock value in the final episode of the season?!

A week of sunshine and delicious food

Did you see, the sun made an appearance. Finally! And honestly I didn’t think my week would improve just because of the weather but it totally did, it just automatically cheered me up! The proper sun was amazing, it was proper glowing sunshine that was able to warm your skin. Wasn’t it almost heavenly? I think it was made so much better because we’ve waited so long for Spring to spring up and envelope us in its glory. What a shame it didn’t last the whole week, but still it’s made an appearance so let’s not get too depressed – it’ll return soon surely!? So what else did I get up to this week, apart from appreciating the sunshine? Well there was:

  • Easter chocolate – yes I’m still making my way through my stash, and loving every mouthful
  • Dinner at The Wolseley for a Dads and Daughters meal. This is my new favourite restaurant I think – it’s absolutely wonderful. The food was out-of-this-world and phenomenally delicious, the building a glorious high ceillinged building and the ambiance just lovely. I can see what the fuss is all about! I had the bread sticks, a mojito, grilled prawns, chicken with mushrooms and fries a mocha and the most amazing chocolate toasted sandwich – wow it was the most sensational thing I’ve ever eaten and I need it in my life more regularly
  • Iron Man 3 – what a phenomenally brilliant film. It was hilarious, there was plenty of action and the story only lost it a little in the middle. Go watch it asap!
  • A book launch in Trafalgar, where I consumed half a tonne of sausage based snack items. Sooo good
  • West Wing shenanigans and more birthday presents from great friends. such good present choices
  • A 3k run on the treadmill, which felt like a 12k one – I blame the lack of distractions
  • A couple of lovely sunny walks into work
  • Lunch in the park interrupted by a rescue helicopter landing out of nowhere
  • Beautiful bright summer flowers
  • Copious amounts of quiche and mochas – yes I’m that classy
  • A run in Central London via Westminster Bridge, The South Bank, Whitehall, Horse Guards Parade, Buckingham Palace, Green Park and The Ritz
  • Lounging in Green Park post work in the sunshine
  • I survived my first ever spin class – I fear my legs will never recover
  • A Game of Thrones marathon, oh it’s getting good!
  • An early morning run. Not my best effort, only 2 miles, but you know that’s more than I’ve normally run by 8 o’clock in the morning
  • I finally fouond a bar of the Cadbury’s Marvellous Creations chocolate and oh my wow it’s delicious – we managed to chomp our way through the entire bar in a day – oops!
  • A delicious brunch at Tom’s Kitchen at Somerset House. FYI the brioche french toast with caramel apples and cinammon cream is what dreams are made of. I also had a fruit and yogurt smoothie to counteract the bad stuff – so I wasn’t that bad really
  • Lunch in Zizzi’s with lovely work peeps
  • Celeb spots – Emma Thompson, Emma Watson and David Heyman

 

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