Thursday, 30 January 2014

Remember The Time

We drove 4 hours to Newquay, in Cornwall to celebrate our friends 21st birthday.
We stayed in a surf lodge near the beach.
We went to Wetherspoons every morning for breakfast, and Walkabout most nights for dinner.
I got a tattoo on a whim, which happens to be one of my favourites.
You ate ice cream every day.
The corridors in the hotel were lit up at night like the inside of a space ship. 
We all drove out to the cider farm for the afternoon, and bought gifts to take home for our families. 
We paid too much to get in to a crappy club with paddling pools on the dance floor. The two of us escaped to go back to the pub, where we danced to Mumford and Sons.
I drove us home in horrific traffic and we thought my car was going to catch fire.
We promised we'd go back soon.

Tuesday, 28 January 2014

365x2014 (January 22 - 28)

22/365: I couldn't resist this Diana Mini in the Urban Outfitters sale, especially because it's the sparkly Superstar version! I've already started shooting a practice film, and am looking forward to taking it away with us.
23/365: I had a mini room tidy, and put down this new rug, also from the UO sale. It sits at the foot of our bed and looks amazing.
24/365: I am a quitter. 24 days in, and I broke my Dry January challenge. I blame a hard month of work and other life stresses. This prosecco with a dash of my homemade limoncello went down very well.
25/365: The first day I nearly forgot to take a photo! I snapped this picture of our log fire on my iPhone whilst we vegged in front of the TV.
26/365: My first baking effort of the year! You can see my simple choc chip cookie recipe here.

27/365: Worst snow day EVER.
28/365: Definitely the best part of the day. Ash and I decided to book tickets to see Penn and Teller in Vegas!

Monday, 27 January 2014

Simple Chocolate Chip Cookies Recipe

I haven't baked since at least October. Having ambitious weight loss goals isn't very compatable with lemon drizzle cakes and chocolate tarts. But this weekend, I just wanted to bake. Ash was fishing, Mum and Dad were out, and I fancied some time to myself in the kitchen. In my (almost) 23 years on this earth, I have never baked cookies. So I looked for some simple recipes, slightly adjusted them as I always do, and made a batch of choc chip cookies. No sweat, I got this.

To make approximately 12 cookies, you will need:
125g butter, softened
100g light brown soft sugar
125g caster sugar
1 egg
1tsp vanilla extract
225g self-raising flour
30g cocoa powder
175g chocolate chips

1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees. Line a couple of baking trays with greaseproof paper, or if you haven't got any like I didn't, rub butter over the base to stop the cookies sticking.
2. Cream together the butter and sugars until light, then add the egg and vanilla.
3. Sift together the flour and cocoa powder, then gradually fold into the mixture. This took a lot of elbow grease!
4. Shake in your chocolate chips and mix in to spread them around.
5. In your hand, roll up walnut sized balls with the mixture and place on the tray. Press the tops down slightly to flatten them. I baked 8 on each tray, and some of them touched edges.
6. Bake for around 7 minutes for a chewy in the middle texture, or 10 minutes for more crunch. Allow to cool for a few minutes after taking them out to harden up the edges.
Best served still warm with a cuppa! I did try one (ok.. two) and they were lovely! I probably could have done with some more chocolate chips though. Once they had completely cooled, I very reluctantly packed them into a lunch box and let Ash take them to work.
After this simple recipe, I've got the baking bug again. I'm thinking ahead to what cake to make to take in to work for my birthday in February. Got any suggestions?
Rosie x

Sunday, 26 January 2014

Sunday Brunch (& a giveaway!)

Let's talk about eggs! Being a Slimming World member means I eat a lot of eggs as they are a free food on the plan. Although I have never really learnt how long to boil an egg for (I know, I really should know that), a couple times a week I'll poach some using poaching pods and have them on toast with some fruit for breakfast - especially if I've got morning meetings and won't eat again until lunch time. Eggs are full of protein and help to keep me feeling full for a lot longer than my usual fruit and yoghurt brekkie. At the weekend, absolutely nothing beats a mid-morning brunch of eggs on toast, with a grind of chilli flakes and black pepper, which is what I treated myself to this morning after restarting the 30 Day Shred!

British Lion Eggs have kindly sent me a copy of 'Eggs' by Michel Roux to giveaway to one of my readers. It's full of recipes which revolve around eggs, from omelettes to custard! If you'd like to be in with a chance to win the book, you can enter using the Rafflecopter widget below. This giveaway is only open to UK readers due to shipping costs - sorry! I will announce the winner and here and on Twitter (@ohsorosie) next Sunday evening (2nd Feb). Good luck! x

The book was provided free of charge for the purpose of the giveaway.

Wednesday, 22 January 2014

365x2014 (January 15 - 21)

15/365: Whilst Ash enjoyed eating up the Christmas chocolate, I snacked on blueberries.
16/365: Rough week at work = time to think about me. Pampering.
 17/365: Ash's band played in Bath. It was my first night out not drinking, and it felt really strange.
18/365: Back to Bath for lunch with some of Ash's family and shopping for Amelia's birthday. My trusty Bayswater came out to play.
19/365: I wonder what it feels like to be 4? I hope I get a Spongebob cake for my birthday in a few weeks :)
20/365: This morning was so frosty and foggy. It looked very pretty. I'm excited to record how this view from my bedroom changes throughout the year!
21/365: I am all about planning clothes for holiday right now. Just 9 weeks to go. I finally got this SF tshirt from ASOS but not sure if I love it yet. We'll see. You can also see our Ryan Russell Taking Back Sunday photos, which I love. I am also all about TBS right now.

This week has been difficult! As I said last week, I am really finding it hard to pick a moment in my day that's photo worthy! Must. Try. Harder.

Link me to your 365 posts if you are taking part :)
Rosie x

Tuesday, 21 January 2014

Kilmersdon Church, Somerset

Kilmersdon village is more famous than you think. It's home to the hill in which Jack and Jill went up, and came tumbling down. It's also where my sister lives. At the bottom of the hill sits the Church of St Peter and St Paul, parts of which date back to 1443. I took a break from celebrating Amelia's birthday (read: needed to walk off the birthday cake), crossed the road and wandered around the churchyard with my camera.
It's not very well kept. Many of the headstones had fallen over or broken, and some resting places were completely overrun with weeds. In fact, I don't think I saw one well kept grave in the whole yard - except the new ones.
It felt good to make time to take photos, something I wouldn't have done if it wasn't for my 365 project. I hope it inspires me to explore things a little more often.

Rosie x

PS. I was hoping to take either of my film cameras with my today, but both of their batteries are gone. I'm getting new ones this week, and can't wait to get back to shooting 35mm again.
PPS. Make sure you check out Kaylah's cemetery posts over on her blog.

Sunday, 19 January 2014

Turning Four

I'm not sure what's scarier - the fact that Amelia turned 4 today, or the fact that this was a year ago. Every time I see her, she's grown up just a tiny bit more. In September, she'll be going to school! It's scary how fast time is passing. This afternoon we headed down to my sisters for a mini party with family.
As an Aunty, I take great pleasure in spoiling my one and only niece. This year, that came in the shape of an Ariel doll, an inflatable Disney princess chair, a Minnie Mouse and Daisy Duck puzzle, a party dress and new PJs. The whole thing was a bit overwhelming for her, but as soon as her new chair was up, she plonked herself in front of the fire and began playing on her Mum's iPad. Four going on fourteen?
This year she asked for a Spongebob cake (great choice I think..) but got super shy when we all sang to her! Something I used to hate when I was a kid too.

It's amazing to have watched her grow from a tiny baby, to a gorgeous toddler, and now in to a perfect little girl. Happy Birthday Amelia!

Aunty Rosie x

Thursday, 16 January 2014

Now Playing

Did I ever tell you Ash and I met at a Taking Back Sunday gig? I'm sure I did. It was May 19th 2006. Ash bought a ticket from a tout outside, and stood in the crowd. A group of us got talking. By the end of the gig, a few of us had all exchanged MSN addresses, and within weeks we were hanging out together.  I was 15, Ash was 16. It wasn't until 2009 that we got together (aged 18 and 19), but it's fun to look back and remember where we met.

I love seeing Taking Back Sunday live, and was pleasantly surprised whilst browsing Twitter to read that they've got a new album coming out in a couple of months. This is the first single off the album, and it's pretty sweet. (I particularly love Adam's long hair.)

Taking Back Sunday - Flicker, Fade
If you should change your name, I'll love you just the same
And if you should run away, I would save your place 
So you can go, go, go if you want to
I wouldn't try and stop you but I couldn't say I blame you

What are you listening to at the moment?
Rosie x

Wednesday, 15 January 2014

365x2014 (January 8 - 14)

8/365: Holiday research at the cinema! Actually a pretty funny movie, Morgan Freeman was great.
9/365: Getting back on my Slimming World track ahead of America. 2.5lbs off this week, so I treated myself to celebrate ;)
10/365: Friday night lazing in our room watching a classic.
11/365: The nicest day we've had for weeks, so I snapped some photos of Dexter being a poser in the sunshine.
12/365: A quiet day at home. I sorted through all my make up and binned about half of it. Then thought it was probably about time to wash my brushes too.
13/365: This little lady came up to my bedroom to give me a goodnight kiss, sporting amazing plaits at the front of her hair. I think we have Gran to thank for that one :)
14/365: Icy veins on the window. Definitely the coldest day we've had this winter.

The second week of my 365 is over, and I'm still surprised that I haven't forgotten a day yet. I am finding it hard to do in the week, when it's dark before I leave work and I spend most of the evening in my bedroom. I will have to start using my imagination a little more :) Link me if you're taking part in a 365 too!

Rosie x

Friday, 10 January 2014

Heart Ache nail colour by Fearne Cotton for Boots

For Christmas, my Mum gifted me this set of polishes from Fearne Cotton's collection with Boots. I wasn't expecting them to be good coverage or high quality, but I'm pleasantly surprised. For my back to work nails, I lashed on two coats of Heart Ache, a gorgeous vampy red, and used Seche Vite Top Coat for a glossy finish. A couple of nails have chipped very slightly, but I think that was because I had the longest bath ever the night after I painted them.
On New Years Eve, I used two more of the shades from the set to create a metallic blue manicure, with added celebratory sparkle. You can see it on my Instagram here. This lasted really well for the 4 days it was on and didn't show any signs of chipping.

The set is currently in the sale, so the polishes work out at £6 for 6. Pretty good value if you're looking for some decent quality colours to update your collection. Do you have any high street polish recommendations?

Rosie x

Thursday, 9 January 2014

Liven Up Your Lunch Box : Stuffed Sweet Peppers

Ever since July, I have taken a salad to lunch pretty much every day. I love salad a lot, and don't think I could ever truly get fed up of it, but my lunchbox definitely needed a little more livening up, especially now the cold weather is heading our way.
Tesco do these awesome packs of sweet mini peppers for £2.50. These lasted Mum and I well over a week, there's so many in the pack! I made up some Ainsley Harriott Moroccon Medley Cous Cous as per the packet instructions and left it to stand whilst deseeding the peppers.
Once deseeded, I blasted them in the microwave on high power for 3 minutes, turning them half way through. This just takes away the crunchy texture and softens them. I then allowed them to cool for a few minutes before stuffing them with cous cous, ready to go alongside my every day salad. You could even reheat them before you eat them if you like, but I had mine cold.

How do you liven up your lunch box?
Rosie x

PS. These photos were snapped on my phone whilst I was making them, hence the poor quality.

Tuesday, 7 January 2014

365x2014 (January 1 - 7)

I've always wondered if I could manage a 365 project, and 2014 is going to be the year I try. Like Elycia said when she launched her 2013 365 Project  - the pressure is off. I'm not expecting to produce an amazingly high quality image every day, more of a snapshot into my day or my life at that time. Something to look back on in the future so I can always remember 2014. Here goes...

1/365: The first photo I took in 2014 (excluding iPhone selfies at midnight). We crashed out at 2am after dancing for a few hours with our friends. Happy New Year!
 2/365: My first 2014 sunrise, witnessed whilst getting ready for my first day of work of the year.
3/365: Saying goodbye to Christmas, and this sweet card from Ash, which has settled alongside a photo of us at Reading Festival in 2010.
4/365: Whiskey ginger, sans whiskey. Not drinking in January is going ok so far!
 5/365: Sunday at home.
6/365: I treated myself to the most relaxing bath. I led there for so long that my fingers wrinkled, but it felt nice to just slow down for a while.
7/365: A long night spent editing the artwork for Montrose's debut EP. Constant cups of teas supplied by Ash helped the process immensely.