Being a newbie in the blogging world, I didn’t realise anything like bloglovin’ existed – until now…! This is a brilliant site, where you can view hundreds of your favourite blogs all under one roof. It’s a great invention and something I’m going to be using to search for lots of inspiration, not only in interiors, but in other areas of interest for me too.
So, here I am. Sharing my link with the world on how to find me.
My Instagram weekly roundup is a few shots from my recent visit to London. Spent a good few hours wandering around Liberty and finding some brilliant and beautiful ideas.
I LOVE this idea. We have a large chimney breast and open fire and I was really wondering what to with it. And now, I have a solution. Ok, so it might be a little difficult to get the bottom books out. But, to be honest when do you need access to ALL of your books ALL of the time? I love the colours and texture it brings to the area.
- 1 tsp olive oil
- 1 medium onion, finely chopped
- 1 clove garlic, finely grated
- 1 inch/2½ cm fresh ginger, finely grated
- 2 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp ground turmeric
- 150g red lentils
- 1 x 400g tin chopped tomatoes
- 3 vegetable stock cubes, dissolved in 3 pints of hot water
- 28g fresh coriander, finely chopped
- a good grinding of salt & black pepper
Total time: 25 mins
I dabbled with the 5:2 diet last year. I’ve tried most diet plans over the years – Atkins, clean & lean, low carb, low fat, no sugar. You name it, I’ve tried it. What I’ve learnt is that to have any stickability, you need to make it a lifestyle choice. Not a diet. So, now I have a few key lessons in how to eat healthier…
Listen to your body
What do you crave? If it’s sugar, then this is what will put the most weight on you. Fat? Then cutting down on this will help you lose weight and keep it off. It helps to make a food diary to along with notes on when you get hungry. If you also note any side effects you experience like headaches, bloating, etc. this will allow you to see some correlation between what you eat and how you feel. And also if any food makes you feel more or less hungry, which it can do. You might be really lucky and be able to eat everything and anything. But most people have some kind of food side effect and go through their whole life without knowing.
For example, processed white bread and pasta is no good for me. It does unholy things to my body, and I’ve worked out the correlation. A friend of mine is vegetarian and she cannot eat legumes. They bloat her to within an inch of her life. Listen to your body and it will guide you the best way – better than any book, blog or TV programme will.
Don’t mess with your diet
Ever heard of the 7/10 rule? Well the theory is when you lose weight, you lose 7/10 of the weight from where you don’t want to lose it. And 7/10 from where you do. And when you put weight on? It’s the opposite – 7/10ths of the weight ends up going on the place you least want/need it. So, if you keep constantly changing your diet, start dieting/stop dieting, you’ll end up losing weight from where you least want to lose it and never get to the point where you feel happy.
Where do you put weight on?
All female body shapes have their pro’s and cons. I’m pear shaped, which means I end up with a booty wider than my shoulders. Not a great look… However, I’ve learnt to embrace this (what else am I going to do?) and I concentrate on fat burning and toning in this area. I do have a theory though (it isn’t based on any clinical studies mind…). And this is based on my friend’s experiences and their body shapes. It seems that if you’re pear shaped, your enemy is saturated fat. And if you’re apple shaped, sugar is not your friend. If your athletic shaped, well you’re damn lucky lady..! I’d love to hear from people to see if this seems true for a larger group of people.
How do you like to eat?
Personally, I can’t stand being hungry. It makes me miserable. Some people just get used to this feeling but I simply cannot. That means grazing on 5 small meals a day seem to work for me. Some people prefer to stick to 3 meals a day with no snacking. Again, choose something that works for you and you’ll be able to stick to it better and incorporate it into your life.
I find there is some real truth in the saying – Eat like a King for breakfast, Prince for lunch and Pauper for dinner. Eating larger quantities (if you’re hungry) in the morning is better than last thing at night as your metabolism is quicker in the morning and you have more chance to burn the calories off. It makes sense – eating a creamy curry or fish and chips an hour before you go to bed isn’t going to be the best thing. The other thing is the speed with which you eat. If you appreciate and savour your food, you’ll enjoy it more as you’ll be registering it better. Plus, it takes your stomach 15 minutes to send a signal to your brain that you’re full – so if you stuff food in your mouth quickly, you’ll end up with more food in your stomach than you need or want. Eating slowly is the quickest and easiest way to losing weight.
Remember the basics
We all know what is good for us. Foods thick with saturated fats are not good for us, so keep them to a minimum. Sugar and foods with lots of it in aren’t good for you either – they peak your blood sugars and then dive just as quickly, mkaing you miserable and cranky. Watch out for all processed foods – even the ones singing ‘we’re healthy, low-fat, low-sugar’. They’ll have some other hidden nasties in them. Beware and avoid all all costs if you can.
Another sage bit of info I’ve learnt over the years is – don’t drink your calories, which does include fruit juices. It’s a waste of calorie intake. Recent studies are now saying fruit juice shouldn’t even be counted as your one a day. Also, eat your water intake. Fruits and vegetables rich in water can hydrate your body, in some cases better than water.
And finally, watch out for hidden sugar… Fruit, whilst it has brilliant vitamins and minerals in them, still has a LOT of sugar in. So you cannot eat large piles of the stuff and feel virtuous – just comparing sugar values, you could be eating the same amount as a Mars bar. You’ll be better off eating vegetables and crudites for your vitamin intake.
New year, new start. How many times do we hear this? However, I’ve been trying to decorate our bedroom for around 6 months now. And most of the time, things just get in the way. When you work full time, the last thing you want to do is don your paint-splattered jogging pants, haul furniture out of the bedroom you sleep in and start painting some walls. But time has a habit of slipping by. So low and behold we’re in the New Year and I’ve still sample colours painted on my chimney breast.
So I really do mean business with the start of the New Year and January is the perfect time to decorate. We’ll lets face it, there’s not much else you can do. What with all the overindulgence of Christmas, it’s the perfect time to burn off some additional calories and get up and down a ladder!
Our bedroom has exposed stone walls either side of the chimney breast, so there’s only three large walls to paint. There is the chimney breast to consider but this is a small area. With this in mind, I decided that this should be a bold colour, along with one other wall. The other two will be in an accompanying hue to beautifully compliment the stunning colour.
So, bedroom wall colours – what do you go for? Well our bedroom wall colors have been grey (battleship grey as my partner calls it) for a number of years, so I feel we’re ready for a jump into a deep and dark new colour. I want to go for a navy blue, with a pale grey accent colour to highlight the deep, rich colour of the blue. I’ve decided to go with navy blue on the chimney breast and wall outlining our window and the rest will be in a gorgeous Fired Earth colour called Yes your honour.
Now, to buy navy blue emulsion paint has been something of a challenge, and I’m going to be doing an additional post on trying to find this said colour. I really didn’t think it would’ve been such a challenge but it really has. I wanted a rich, deep inky navy blue, almost like a biro has leaked – that kind of rich colour. This has been incredibly hard to find. Most of the darker blues on the market seem to be a chalky blue and the closest I found was a Ralph Lauren paint, which they don’t sell in the UK.
I’d love to know if anyone else has struggled to find paint colours and if they have some solutions to this, then please do get in touch.
The cover comes in three different laser-cut wood finishes, which are walnut, cherry and maple. The ‘pages’ are made from a durable water-resistant Tyvek “pages” containing high-performing LED’s. Tyvek is a synthetic material which is very strong, really difficult to tear and is highly breathable.
My friend told me about The White Company offering a Pomegranate Candle, very similar to the Jo Malone Pomegranate Noir. I was even more thrilled when she told me is was £20, which is nearly twice as cheap than the original Jo Malone one. So, I decided to do a like-for-like comparison and let you all know what the verdict was.
So, on packaging. The White Company candle comes in a pleasant cellophane wrapped white box, which can be gift wrapped if you like – always perfect for presents and saves on time. The glass holder is a clear glass holder with the scent and White Company logo clearly showing. Jo Malone candles come in a larger box, with black branded ribbon wrapped around the edges. Once you get into the tissue lined box, the candle is presented with a lovely silver cap, which sits on top of the glass holder. Oh, and they tend to give you a packet of Jo Malone long length matches – always a bonus and a lovely treat.
I lit the White Company candle and waited for the wonderful aroma that I’m soo used to from the Jo Malone candle. And there is was – it smells exactly the same – woo hoo!. However the smell is much stronger when you are close to the candle. And for all of you that are used to walking into the wonderful ‘wall’ of smell that is achieved from the Jo Malone offerings, then its not as strong at all. The Jo Malone candle definitely has more kick in the intensity of the aroma. When it’s lit in a room and you leave for a while and walk back in, the smell just hits you. I find that really pleasing and just a real sense of luxury – mm, I love it.
If you’re on a budget – and let’s be honest, nearly £40 for a candle is a real luxury purchase; then I strongly recommend the White Company one as you do still get the lovely aroma of Pomegranate. However, if you’re used to Jo Malone’s offering and are expecting the same from the White Company one, then I’ll let you know now, it doesn’t have the same kick.
Happy burning everyone.