10 October 2014

Blogging for Branch309 | My Debut

Many of you will know that I'm a photographer over at schuh and Branch309, what you may not know is that I'm one on the dream team that run the Branch309 blog too. I've been pestering folk at head office to be blog stars for years now and the powers that be have finally convinced to show my face and join in. 

Not only did I have to get my photo taken (come on a might enjoy a selfie or two on Instagram but that's totally different right?)
To even out the awkward with some cute, I managed to sneak in some photos of Thor 
And no blog about me would be complete without showing off Cupcake's good looks too
But if you fancy reading the whole post you can do here.

Have a beautiful weekend everyone!

28 September 2014

Painting, a creepy kitten and new friends...

This weekend, although totally loaded with the cold *sniff* has been full to the brim of DIY. Now that my flatmate has moved up the road (actually just up the road) I have absolutely no excuses for putting off the painting any more! NEVER make the mistake I did this week, I thought I could just gloss over the last two doors in my hallway and boom, pretty, white hallway. No, that didn't work. Now I'm looking at fresh white gloss next to three year old gloss and although they are both meant to be white they just aren't. It's disastrous, but it will keep me out of trouble for the next few weekends.

Luckily I had this little creep to keep me entertained while I made a start on all the painting.
I'm in love with my new lampshade in my bedroom, that's three coloured domes in my flat now - obsessed.
I popped into Love Salvage for a quick rummage, obviously because I don't really need anything I found EVERYTHING that I've ever wanted. Just look at that white and blue cabinet.
I also cracked out the woolly hat for the first time this autumn and made a new friend at the Barras whilst trying to find my favourite but hard to find second hand furniture shop. I will call my new friend Mindy, I miss Mindy already.
I suppose I should really get back to tidying the mess I've made in my flat... Happy Sunday!

10 July 2014

Recipe: detox water

I saw this on Pinterest about a year ago and I've sworn by it ever since. I always thought detox water was a myth, or a buzz word but I tried this and I honestly don't know if it really helps to detox you but I do know it's really tasty and that it makes my skin look brighter when I drink it regularly.

What you'll need:
  • 1 litre jug
  • half a cucumber
  • 1 lemon
  • a handful of fresh mint
  • water
All you need to do it chop the cucumber into chunks, slice the lemons into wedges and stick them all in the jug. Add the mint leaves and fill with water. Leave it in the fridge for a few hours to let the water become infused and enjoy the refreshing water. It's perfect for the summer, even this unreliable Scottish one!

8 July 2014

A week in the life...

Last week I was lucky enough to take the week off to visit my parents with my man friend and although it's not home (because I'm a bit of a gypsy) it's always so lovely to breathe some country air even if it does rain for the first few days! Here's what I got up to.

I wore a chav level gold
Took the city cat out in the garden (she didn't like it one bit)
Fed some ducks
Found a Hawaiian cafe in Cleethorpes
And brought a bit of Cleethorpes home for the fridge

6 July 2014

Recipe: Blueberry Smoothie

In my post earlier today about Genius I said I'd give you the recipe for a delicious blueberry and banana smoothie. It's crazy simple and super tasty this is all you need:
  • 1/2 cup of blueberries (I keep a stash of blueberries in the freezer)
  • 1 banana
  • 1 cup of hazelnut milk (or any other milk)
All you need to do is bung it all in a blender and blend until it's smooth. It turns this gorgeous purple colour and like I said in my previous post, a joy especially for breakfast. 
How cute are my new strawberry glasses and milk jug? I may well have gone on a little spree in ASDA last week...
 What's your perfect smoothie?

Review: Genius pains au chocolat

One of the things I miss most since going completely wheat free is pastry! Yes, yes, I know that pastries are full of fat but it's good to have a sweet treat every now and again. I've tried a lot of gluten free foods and Genius are certainly my go to brand for a gluten free staples when there's just no time to bake anything. I rely on Genius bread to feed my sandwich habit but now I can pretend that I am indulging in some pastry like I used to.
These pains au chocolats are to die for! The pastry is buttery and flaky, just like a pastry should be and if you warm them up in the grill they are the perfect weekend breakfast with a home made smoothie, I'll post the recipe for the blueberry smoothie later today.
What's your favourite sweet treat or Genius product?

6 June 2014

New Addition!

You'll all know that I'm a HUGE fan of animals, be they whales (I've adopted two), llamas, screaming goats, rabbits or kittens, I LOVE THEM ALL. You all know my little rabbit Cupcake (If you don't she often makes an appearance on social media) this is her when I first brought her home:
Since I got her, I've been collecting a small zoo. I now have a fish called Willam and now I have a new addition to the family, a KITTEN! They are all so adorable, especially when Thor the kitty follows Cupcake around the flat or just chilling on the sofa.
Thor is now 11 weeks old and a total terror! But she is now the star of a schuh YouTube video with her big sister Boo, I know I'm biased but aren't they adorable?

If you want to watch Nadia's handiwork over and over and over, hop over to the schuh YouTube.

16 May 2014

Recipe: Coffee Smoothie

Smoothies are so great but if you're as addicted to coffee as I am you'll be conflicted about what to drink first, coffee or smoothie, coffee or smoothie, coffee or smoothie...? ARGH! 

I was flicking through my cookbooks the other day (one of my favourite hobbies) and came across a coffee smoothie from Nigella Express, I've changed it slightly but it's got the same vibe!

Here's all you need:
  • 1 x banana
  • 1 cup of hazelnut milk
  • 1 teaspoon of maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon of instant coffee
  • 1 teaspoon of cacao nibs
Chuck it all in your blender and blend until smooth.
It's great immediately with a straw but is also perfect in a jar for work the next morning if you have to leave the house at crazy o'clock like I do.

15 May 2014

Hair: The Frida

Have you ever been obsessed by somewhere you've never been? I have, quite a few times actually.... my current obsession though is Mexico (remember my Mexican Meatball Soup recipe? See it here), the whole place makes me want to cry with joy and it probably stems from the long standing obsession with Frida Kahlo. The Frida obsession seems to be quite widespread at the moment, what with the film Frida in 2002, doesn't Salma Hayek look so much like her?
I've gotten to the point where this Mexican stuff is leaking into my everyday without me even trying. I'm calling my current go to hair style "The Frida" for obvious reasons.
Two plaits, pinned over my head and a flower to top it off. It's so simple for those days when my hair is flat at the top and frizzy at the ends (a constant issue for a compulsive back comber).

I'm trying really REALLY hard not to buy these socks to compliment "The Frida" Modcloth, you're making it so difficult! 

20 April 2014

Happy Easter

I've got to admit, shooting imagery for work at Easter is fun because it usually means I can make loads paper bunnies (like last year, see it here) but this year it meant CHOCOLATE! 

Go forth and stuff yourself with chocolate!

4 April 2014

Recipe: Baked Grapefruit

Grapefruit is a total dream to eat at any time of the day, be it a sweet treat in the afternoon or an early morning shot of vitamin C. It can however get a little boring... But I stumbled across the idea of baking it and I've never looked back! 
 You'll only need half a grapefruit per portion, you can totally cling film the other half and save it for the next day. Here's what you'll need:
  • half a grapefruit
  • 1 tablespoon of honey
  • 2 tablespoons of soya yoghurt
All you need to do is spread the honey on your grapefruit half, stick it on a baking tray and put it in a preheated oven at 175C until it goes all gooey and golden. Then simply serve it with the yoghurt. AMAZINGLY tasty. 

3 April 2014

A few of my favourite things...

I love March, mostly because it's the start of spring so daffodils come out to play and I get to celebrate my birthday! My birthday always reminds me how lucky I am to have such wonderful people around me even though I am so far from home. So here are a few of my favourite things... about this March.

Having a princess party for my 28th just so I could dress up as my alter ego, Snow White:
My new (donated from my grandparents) mirror mirror on the wall:
Homemade cards: 
Paper straws:
My own pin up lady:
Wheat free cakes:
Unexpected gifts from new friends:
And best of all, daffs!
What;s your favourite month? Are you hopeful that spring is still on it's way? I'm not so sure anymore!!

26 March 2014

Recipe: Green Smoothie

There's always a lot of talk about green juice and smoothies, green juices are just not for me but I found this smoothie recipe and it's had me hooked since December! 

What you need:
  • 1 cup of spinach
  • 1 cup of green grapes
  • 1/4 cup of coconut milk
  • 1 handful of ice cubes
All you need to do with these super healthy ingredients is whack them in a blender (my blender has now broken though and I'm distraught so if anyone has any recommendations for a new one, please let me know) and blitz until smooth.

Enjoy! Are any of you hooked on a green smoothie?

23 March 2014

Chinese Supermarket and recipe: prawn wraps

You all know that I love food, I love all food (apart from mushrooms) especially food from oriental countries. I love most things oriental, especially Chinese food, the colours and the flavours melt my brain with joy. So any excuse to go to my local Chinese supermarket and I'm there! The SeeWoo in Glasgow is a great excuse to stock up on incense like this:
Wheat free noodles:
Beautiful prawns: 
And most importantly these rice papers:
Now after reading this post from Claire - read her blog here, it's full of amazing vegan recipes, fashion and crafty projects - I was dying to try a something similar. This is where the prawns and papers come together to make my delicious wheat free, dairy free dinner that is super tasty.

You'll need:
  • two rice papers
  • a handful of prawns
  • two tablespoons of sweet chilli sauce
  • 1 small carrot
  • 1 spring onion
  • a chunk of cucumber - about 5cm
Just defrost your prawns overnight in the fridge, mine are in their shells but they are really easy to peal once defrosted. Rinse the prawns in some cold water and get them straight into a hot frying pan, here you just fry them with a little bit of spray oil, once the prawns are almost cooked add the sweet chilli sauce and leave to bubble away, making sure you coat all of the prawns in the sauce.

Shred the vegetables ready for the wraps. The rice papers are incredibly easy to use, simply soak them, one at a time, in warm water until they soften, it only takes 3-5 minutes. All you need to do now is split all of the ingredients equally between the two papers, wrap and enjoy!
I just need to learn to wrap mine more neatly!

9 March 2014

Pink Sunday - Recipe: Pink Smoothie

Happy Sunday everyone, Sunday is my favourite day of the week, I never feel guilty for doing nothing and anything I do end up doing seems like a bonus. Needless to say, today I did very little - mostly shopping for mama smeeeff's mother's day gift and papa smeeeff's birthday present. Why are dad's so hard to buy for? Long gone are the days of buying him DVD's that I actually wanted... damn.

Anyway, if you follow me on Instagram you might have seen that I started my day with eggs, gluten free toast and a smoothie - such a good start to a Sunday.
Of course the smoothie is home made and super tasty, you just need:
  • 1 cup of berries (I often use a frozen pack of summer fruits) 
  • 1 ripe banana
  • 1/2 cup of hazelnut milk
All you need to do is blend it until it's all smooth and creamy. I find that the frozen berries, as well as being a handy frozen staple, they also give the smoothie a really creamy texture that's a little bit like a sorbet. 

What's your favourite Sunday morning breakfast?

8 March 2014

Recipe: Raw Brownie

After being introduced to Deliciously Ella a few weeks ago I decided that I should start being strict again with my diet, I mean all the chocolate and cheese is so tasty but it's just not good for my skin or my insides. But as well as ditching the dairy I've decided to swap the sugar and generally anything with unpronounceable ingredients for fruit and vegetables. I'm writing this on day 6 and I feel so much better already. These raw brownies have kept me going, there is nothing bad in them but they taste like they are full of gooey, chocolately goodness that usually comes along with a ton of calories!

Here's what you need:
1 cup of walnuts
1 pinch of sea salt
10 dates
3 tablespoons of cacao nibs
2 tablespoons of coconut oil

I know that I say everything is easy, but this has got to be the easiest, you just need a blender and a baking sheet covered in baking paper. So, first, blitz the cup of walnuts until they are smallish chunks, add in the salt and cacao nibs (I'm sure you could just use a good quality dark chocolate here if you wanted but the cacao nibs really are great), blitz again.

Then add the dates and blitz. Are you seeing the theme here? Add and blitz, add and blitz. Now the coconut oil, I've found that this is better if you melt the oil first, you guessed it one more blitz. All you need to do now is whack it in a bowl and add a couple of tablespoons of cold water so you can press the mixture onto the baking sheet.

Leave it to set in the fridge, preferably 3 hours and cut into delicious pieces to enjoy! I like to eat mine with some fresh strawberries, cherries and sometimes a spoonful of soya yoghurt.

What's your favourite guilt free sweet treat?

2 March 2014

Food, a hat and jelly shoes

I'm back! With tasty food and new purchases - one of which I'm still not completely happy with but here goes:
Shoes: I finally (after a 20 year wait) got some jelly shoes, these beauts are from schuh, obviously and I love them. As soon as it stops raining I'll be purchasing the purple and probably the glitter too!
Dress: This is pretty old now, but a total favourite. It's a wrap around Dorothy Perkins dress which always makes me feel half way between a ballet teacher and a witch. They don't stock it any more but it's pretty much this.
Hat: Now this is the tricky one... I absolutely love hats but I'm just never quite brave enough to buy one until now! With some gentle (actually, it wasn't gentle at all) encouragement from Carol, the hat was bought and after staring at it for a full week I donned the hat for a jaunt to the cinema with my man friend.
But now I'm lusting over this H&M bag to go with this outfit too so that I look more witchy...
This weekend was also filled with really good food:
You can't beat poached eggs and bacon on a gluten free roll. I'm now off to see if my Deliciously Ella inspired brownies are set enough for some photographs and testing.

Ciao for now,