Cook…bake…read…explore…

Catch up

C

Today, Dom was kind enough to drive me to Leicester, we are at his home-home at the moment because it is our Easter holidays from uni and it is much closer to Leicester than mine.  He took me so that I could visit one of my very best friends from school who I haven’t seen since THE SUMMER – much gasping please, and this-must-never-happen-again-ing. Over the Christmas holidays we somehow missed each other; I wasn’t at home much as I had to get back from work, and she was away and only back after I was back in Aberdeen.

So, today we had a LOVELY afternoon and C is for a very long awaited catch up. We chatted and giggled and ate burgers and completely put the world to rights. It was just the best.

Nic
This is us on my 18th birthday – and nothing ever changes – I hope it never will xxxxx

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“A whizzpopper!…

“A whizzpopper!” cried the BFG, beaming at her. “Us giants is making whizzpoppers all the time! Whizzpopping is a sign of happiness. It is music in our ears! You surely is not telling me that a little whizzpopping if forbidden among human beans?”

— Roald Dahl, The BFG

 

B

 B is for Whizzpopper?  No, B is for the BFG!

Yesterday seemed to disappear without me even noticing, and with some added travelling there was no time  for sitting at computers…so, a little late, here is yesterdays offering.  A quote from Roald Dahl’s wonderful The BFG to make you smile on a Thursday morning.

A is for April Adventures

a-to-z HEADER [2014] - april

This month I am taking on the Blogging from A – Z Challenge! This is a yearly challenge that started in 2010. I am to write a blog based on a letter for every day in April – apart from Sundays, each Sunday I’m allowed a lie in and a little blogging holiday! Handily this makes 26 days, one for each letter of the alphabet.

This seems quite an ask here on the very first day, but the posts don’t need top be long, just in keeping with the letter for that day. I think it is going to be great for stretching my imagination and give me the chance to write about something I wouldn’t usually. I have a few ideas up my sleeve, and I hope you will all enjoy the ride with me.

A

Today is the first of April, so rather unimaginatively, A is for April, and this is my challenge for the month…who knows where it will take me, I’m hoping for some adventures on the way!

The Fault In Our Stars by John Green

The afternoon after I finished my exams I went to the book shop and did some perfect guilt free browsing. I then came home and literally devoured this book in two sittings. It’s been a very long time since a story has kept me up until the early hours of the morning, but that Saturday night I was to be found in my bed sobbing my little heart out at 2:30am. Tragic but true!

This is the story of Hazel and Augustus, they are both cancer kids and first bump into each other at Support Group. Emotionally they seem old beyond their years, they have both been through so much. But falling in love with each other gives them back some of their innocent childishness…’as he read, I feel in love like you fall asleep: slowly, and then all at once’…it’s a chance to laugh and play and take risks (with just a few hospital visits thrown in between).

It is a story that is real and raw, and the dark humor will make you laugh at times when you think you probably shouldn’t be. But it’s life and we do laugh, and then later we cry. Markus Zusak was right when he said it is ‘A novel of life and death and the people caught in between’ – we are all the people caught in between there somewhere and I think anyone will find something within the pages of this book that will stay with them.

A love story for a valentines weekend. I think you should all read this book, whoever you are, wherever you are…although if you are an audiobook nerd (guilty), I would advise not listening in the car (yes Mum, I’m talking to you!)!

Happy reading xxx

ps. Picture comes from pinterest.

It’s been a while…

Hi, how are you all out there in cyber world?

It’s been a while since I was last here. Last term life sort of took over a bit; the start of my final year of uni, starting my dissertation, being back at my part time job…and somehow blogging just got a bit forgotten. Over the summer we did heaps of exciting things for me to tell you about and show you pictures of (whether you really wanted to see or not), and I suppose being back into normal life I lacked a bit of inspiration. But hey, I have a very exciting life, and of course you want to hear about it, right?!

So, as it’s a new year, and as a student your new year doesn’t ever reeeaally start until after January exams so I’m still in good time, I am going to write more. I won’t call it a resolution, because then I don’t have anything to break. After all, I am still in my final year of uni, do actually have to write the dissertation now, about three times a week I go and gallivant around Fat Face in the name of working there, and ummm finding a job for September would also be just delightful…but I think if you really want to do something you will make time for it. My reasons for starting up in the first place still stand and it makes quite a nice change to write about something other than people who lived hundreds of years ago and thought a lot.

So, for now this is me. And I’d better be getting back to my coloured pens and Mr Wittgenstein, but I’ll be back soon. Promise.

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The Fifth of November

Of the two, I am most certainly a bonfire night girl over Halloween. Every year it is a freezing cold night and a good excuse to wrap up warm, wear a million pairs of socks and is the first REAL outing of hat, scarf and gloves for the winter (although I’ve actually been wearing them for several weeks in chilly Scotland…). This evening Aberdeen put on a particularly good display, made even better by a Starbucks in a red cup and good company.
fireworks
If you look very closely you might see we are ALL wearing a Fat Face scarf…can you guess where we work?!

The photos are just from my phone, so not the best, but imagine a chilly breeze, the smell of candy floss mixed with sparklers and a bang from the sky that goes right through you…

Remember, Remember!
The fifth of November,
The Gunpowder treason and plot;
I know of no reason
Why the Gunpowder treason
Should ever be forgot!

It’s September.

At some point in September every year we all have a little ‘fresh-start’ moment. I think it stays with us from when we were little and you came home with new shoes and new books for a new year at school. This September I start my fourth and final year at university, maybe my last back to school, but I don’t think the September fresh start will ever go away.

September means a turn from Summer into Autumn.
September means back to school.
September means the boots come back out to play.
September means a new woolly jumper (especially when you live in Aberdeen…).
September means the leaves turning crisp.
September means warming food, big bowls of soup or chilli.
September means the first fire of the winter roars up the chimney.
September means going stationary shopping.
September means thinking about hats and scarfs again.
September means longer nights with films and books.

Yesterday Dom went to help drive minibus loads of freshers to their new halls, and I made autumnal coloured soup. How very September of us.

Carrot and Coriander Soup (extra warm!)

Soup is the easiest thing to make, it’s super cheap, super yummy and will fill you up on a cold Aberdonian afternoon. One of the best things is that you can put almost anything in it, you’ll soon find your favourite combinations. Here’s my carrot and coriander with a nice red chilli from my new chilli plant!

Take a large pan and fry an onion in a bit of oil. While it is browning, peel and chop a good bundle of carrots and a few potatoes to give the soup some thickness. Pop these in the pan as well and cook through for a few minutes.

Just about cover the veggies with stock, a pinch of salt and pepper and set to bubble for half an hour or so.

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Once your carrots and potatoes are soft, take them off the heat and add in a large tablespoon of coriander, about a level tablespoon of cumin and a little ginger. Then, if you’re feeling brave, a red chilli (this soup is just as lovely without, it was just a particularly chilly day!)…These measurements are all estimations, really it is down to how you like your soup to taste, once whizzed, taste, and add a little more of whatever you think it needs. Add another pinch of salt and pepper and keep blending your soup until it is reeeeeaally smooth, you might have to add a little more water – that’s okay!

It’s as easy as that. Ladle some into a bowl to munch with some toast straight away and pop the rest in the fridge or freezer for a speedy lunch later in the week.

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I’ve always thought September was a funny kind of inbetweeny month, but actually lots of my favourite things happen in September. For me this year, September marks having spent two years with Dom, it is the start of a new house, it is back to my part time job, and the beginning of writing my dissertation. Hello fourth year – eeek – lets hope it’s a good one!