Wednesday, 24 September 2014

What I ate Wednesday #1

Have you ever heard of WIAW? "What I ate Wednesday" is basically a post for bloggers to document what they ate.. on Wednesday. I initially spotted Anna Saconne's posts and have since started reading other bloggers posts. If nothing else, it's a brilliant way to get inspiration for what to eat throughout the day. The idea is to blog your meals, snacks and drinks throughout the day.

Because i love reading other peoples so much i thought i'd hop on the bandwagon and join in. Be aware that the chances are that these posts will be incredibly dull. I tend to eat the same things for breakfast and lunch for weeks on end but dinner will be something different every week so watch out for that! As i live at home i have little control over what i have for dinner and therefore no control over the presentation of the meal so please don't judge the nutritious value or presentation of my dinner, focus on the meals i can control!

For breakfast this morning i had my usual bowl of Kellogg's Crunchy Nut. I know it's not the healthiest breakfast but it's bloody lovely. I've never been one to avoid eating breakfast, in fact i usually wake up hungry so really look forward to my breakfast. I don't have a drink with my breakfast but had a glass of water between breakfast and lunch.

I was inspired by Anna Saconne's paninis and am having 2 small toasted pittas with cheese, chorizo and baby spinach. I usually have some cucumber slices and tomatoes with it too along with a glass of water. We don't a toasty maker or grill at work but i've made do and in order to melt the cheese (an obvious must!) i fill the pitta with the cheese and chorizo and then when they're toasted put the spinach in before indulging!

Absolutely delicious.

By 4 o'clock i was peckish! I grabbed an apple with some smooth peanut butter and another glass of water. This snack is my absolute favourite at the moment, it's the perfect healthy snack and a great sweet and salt combo!

Fave snack ever!
For dinner mum had cooked chips (in the air fryer) beans and sausages. She was in a rush this evening so just did something quick, hence the lack of nutrients and vegetables! Afterwards i had a 100% real fruit juice ice lolly which was lovely and very refreshing. 

I also had a glass of milk whilst watching the Great British Bake off and another glass of water before bed. 

How much of a rubbish blogger am i! I forgot to take pictures of 2 of my 3 meals, well you all know what cereals look like anyway! Sorry guys, i will make more of an effort to remember to take a photo before i dig in next week. I hope you enjoyed this post anyway,  i certainly enjoyed eating it all. 

Sunday, 21 September 2014

Breakfast at Bill's.

This weekend was the same as most, out in town on Friday night and then suffering for it on Saturday. My friend was home for the weekend (She's at uni) so we decided to meet up, with Saz for breakfast, something i've never done before. I've always loved the idea of going out for breakfast but never got round to doing it, especially as my best friends used to work the weekends up until a few weeks ago so it wasn't really a possibility. 

We decided to go to Bill's in Windsor and then spend the afternoon having a ganders around the town, there are some particularly nice things in the stores at the moment. The Autumn/Winter lines are all out now and i was in a very happy place walking round, unfortunately due to a ridiculously phone bill from Vodafone i was reluctant to spend much money. (If you follow me on Twitter you'll know about that!)

Anyway, off topic! 

The menu at Bill's was perfect, there was something for everyone. I was so tempted by the pancakes with syrup and fruit but due to my hungover state i opted for the Full English. It was your ordinary Full English though, it was a pretty one, the presentation was brilliant and the food itself was delicious. It wasn't disgustingly greasy and the portion size as perfect! Best Full English i think i've ever had. As with any meal there is always a sense of food envy, although it was delicious, i do wish i'd tried the pancakes. I guess it's just another excuse to go again!

Have you ever seen such a good looking full english?
The decor in Bill's is like my ideal for a restaurant like this. It's so beautiful and rustic, the kind of style i want for my own home. The service was pretty good as well, i mean the people serving are really friendly and you get served pretty quick. (they were quite busy) If you guys are looking for somewhere new to go or just fancy a recommendation for somewhere in Windsor (they do have restaurants all over the place though) then i'd definitely suggest trying Bill's out. I for one will definitely be going again. 

Oh, they also had a leaflet on the table for their Christmas Dinner - which you can pre-order and book a table for and i have to admit i was very tempted. It was like £25 i think for a 3 course meal and the choices for each course looked divine, if it was anything like our breakfast it will be good! 

Have you guys ever been to Bill's, what did you think of it? 

Wednesday, 17 September 2014

Top 5 Pinterest Posts I September Part 1

So I stumbled across a fellow bloggers post about their Pinterest favorites and it inspired me to start doing a similar post on a weekly basis. I absolutely love Pinterest and am always pinning new things, inspiring quotes/hand lettering, fashion or home inspo etc. I also love reading weekly/monthly posts so what better way to combine the two!

These are my favorite posts of September Part 1:

Beautifully Simple. 

One pot Pizza/Pasta

How beautiful are these stools?

Gorgeous cardigan, perfect for Autumn.

This makeup is ideal for Autumn. 

Friday, 5 September 2014

Reasons to be creative 2014.

On Wednesday last week i was given the opportunity to attend 'Reason to be Creative 2014' with some colleagues from work. For those of you that have never heard of it, Reasons to be Creative is a conference for anyone with a creative mind. It takes place in the beautiful Brighton, UK and is a 3 day event full of inspiration and education! 

The amazing titles by FormForm

I only attended the Wednesday and boy were there some train palavers, there and back! Our train from Reading to Gatwick was cancelled on the way there and the train from Gatwick to Reading was cancelled on the way back. Annoyingly, all train sites were saying that they were running, but we made it though and it was so worth it! 

The day started with the Elevator pitches which are fast paces, exciting and fresh. There are 20 speakers each given 3 minutes to present their pitch and the audience are then given the opportunity to vote for their favourite 3 who are in turn invited back next year for a full session. Unfortunately, due to travel issues we missed most of these but the ones we did see were really interesting. It's amazing how much information people are able to present in such a short space of time. 

The Elevator Pitchers

Throughout the day there are 3 theaters running different speeches alongside each other so it's a case of deciding which talk you most want to see out of the three. Being creative bodies, we chose the more creative of the talks. The first one we went to see was Lizzie Cullen and her talk 'Owl and the murderous unicorn'. Lizzie is a multi-award winning illustrator based in London, she spoke really well and her talk was fun and enthusiastic. She put on a performance alongside her talk which the whole audience was engaged and enthused by. 'Owl and the murderous unicorn' was all about creativity, what is it, how to find it, how to use it and what to do when you lose it.

She spoke about finding your creative style and how once it has been found, it's one of the most beautiful things artistically. Lizzie mentioned that research and process go hand in hand, in order to produce work that makes sense and really portrays the vision of the work, you have to first understand what the work is about, to understand it's theme or subject.

She talked about her experience of losing her creative mojo and how she went about getting it back. Lizzie said that what really matters is how you are in yourself. In order to create your best work you need to be happy within yourself, if you feel like you're in a creative rut and have lost your muse or inspiration then take time out to fix it, to find it again. One of the most interesting points i thought she made was about being kind to yourself, Lizzie explained how being a dick to yourself and putting yourself down won't help anything and it certainly won't help in finding your creativity again. 

Her talk was incredibly interesting, engaging and thought provoking, i'd definitely recommend seeing her talk if you have the opportunity. Check out some of her work in the mean time!

Sara Blake was our choice for the second session. Sarah is an illustrator, fine artist and designer based in New York. Her talk 'Be a Snortvart: Process, Creativity, Business, and being yourself' was based around her personal path with illustration, where she started and where she is now. 

Sara Blake and some of her work

Sara explained how design serves a purpose, it has to fulfill a purpose whereas art doesn't have to, art it free and completely subjective. She said the big difference between art and design is that art requires you to love what you do.

"Every child is born an artist, the problem is how to remain an artist when we grow up" - Pablo Picasso.

She spoke about the notion that we are who we were as kids, it's that simple, the key is being brave enough to listen to that inner child that's got all the answers. Despite the creative discipline, despite the tool, creating what you want to create is really important.

Don't wait for someone to hire you to make your work, do it in your spare time. Finding the time to create what you want to create is so important and she explained how that was how she managed to get to where she is now, on top of that, separating your love of the work from your want for the money will inspire you to create your best work. Sara told a personal story about how she was working her 9-5 and in the evenings working on some awesome illustrative portraits for Nike.

I loved her point about allowing yourself to make mistakes and get lost, she told another story about her journey down to Brighton and how she got lost along the way. She explained how she stumbled across these piano's that had been set up in some stations and how she was intrigued by the people playing them and their stories. The moral was that it's okay to go wrong and make mistakes because in the end you never know what you might discover in the process. Food for thought!

Probably my favourite talk of the day was Gavin Strange's 'The Aisle of Silly'. Gavin is a jack of all trades, a senior designer for Aardman animations, a creative 'berk' as he describes himself and by night goes by the name of 'JamFactory'. He's a 'polymath', someones who's knowledge stretches across many trades. He oozed passion and enthusiasm, the talk was engaging the whole way through and was just fun and really inspiring.

Gavin Strange and his awesome slides.

His talk was all about having the courage to be anything you want to be and saying yes because you never know where it might lead. Gavin explained how, as designers, our biggest stress is having to get the work done and to the client on time which, in the grand scheme of things, is so insignificant.

He spoke about not waiting to be asked to do something you want to do, much like Sara Blake, don't wait for opportunities to find you. Everyone has time, instead of watching another episode of Breaking Bad (or whatever it is you watch!) do something useful, create something beautiful. 

"If you love what you do, you will never have to work a day in your life" - Marc Anthony

Gavin talked about the idea that it's okay to be crap, it's liberating. Quantity makes quality, making mistakes through trial and error is the best way to create your best work, it will help you to achieve what you are striving for. Using and abusing the trends is okay, use them, abuse them, mix them up and learn from them, there is no shame in that. He said not to care what any one else thought of you or your work, be weird, be wonderful! 

My favourite point of his was to dream big and see how far you can go and most importantly make sure you are enjoying what you are doing, you can't make fun if you aren't having fun.

Gavin included Mary Berry!!

If you haven't had the opportunity to go to 'Reasons to be Creative' before, i'd definitely suggest getting down there next year. I came away feeling more motivated than ever with a million and one ideas for side projects and totally inspired to create my best work.

Tuesday, 2 September 2014

Inspirational post for the day.

Source: Pinterest

I went to see "If i stay" at the cinema last night. For those of you that don't know what it is, it's a movie about a young girl whose life changes forever when she's in a car accident with her family which leaves her in a coma. During an out of body experience she has to decide whether she lives and wakes up to a very different life or dies. 

It's a really good, emotional, very thought provoking film.

I walked away from the film realising how much we have to appreciate in life and how quickly it can all be taken away from us. I can't imagine the pain of losing your family but the thought of not having appreciated them enough, almost hurts more. It made me realise that as a species we take everything we have for granted, wether it be clean water, shelter, friends or family. There's a lot we will never really understand the value of until we lose it. 

I guess the point of this post is to make sure you appreciate at least one thing today that you would normally take for granted. Appreciate the fact that you have a family, that you have good health or that you get to go to school. Whatever it may be! 

And if you haven't, go and see "If i stay". It's a brilliant movie.