Unruly Print – ‘Learn to Lino’ workshop

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Last Friday night I was sat on the A14, stuck in traffic whilst rainclouds loomed above, but what awaited me was worth it; I was on my way to attend a ‘Learn to Lino’ lino printing workshop hosted by the talented Andy aka Unruly Print. This isn’t a usual Friday night activity for me, I haven’t done anything arty since I was allowed to drop the subject in year 9 at school, and even then what I produced was reminiscent of someone giving it a go with their eyes closed, so I was slightly apprehensive that I would be no good at lino printing. I needn’t have worried, as Andy was a brilliant teacher and actually the beauty of lino printing, I found anyway, was that the imperfections translated onto print as interesting detail and I don’t think you could really get it too far wrong.

The workshop began with Andy telling us a little about lino printing and the different tools and materials which can be used, and gave us a tour around our workstations so we could work safely and choose the type of lino we liked best to work with. It was so interesting just having a little play around with the different types of lino and the different tools you could carve your design with, the variations of designs you could make were vast! I decided to use tracing paper and trace my blog logo – forever trying to get my name out there 😉 It was fairly difficult for me to get my head around the whole concept of whether to write my words normally or back to front, because obviously you’re going to use the lino to then print your design in reverse, but luckily for me Andy is an expert and was on hand to help! Continue reading

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New friends in old places

Anyone reading this over the age of around 23/24 will almost definitely agree with me that it is hard to make new friends. You’ve long since left school/college/uni where you’ve either kept in touch with the friends you’ve had or you don’t (personally I have 2 people who have been my best friends since year 9 at school and everyone else are really more acquaintances). I work in an office where again, I have 2 people who I spend time with outside of work but everyone else, although lovely, live their own lives as soon as 5.15 comes around.
Don’t get me wrong I love everyone in my life, my existing friends and family, but sometimes you just think to yourself ‘is this it?’ As you grow through your twenties and early thirties I feel that you change a lot as a person and maybe the people you’ve always known aren’t quite enough anymore. People move on, move away or simply don’t share the same lifestyle as you (children, jobs etc.) so when that happens, what do you do?

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If it was a partner you were after, you could simply get yourself on Tinder, go on a few dates and eventually you’re probably going to bag yourself a new boy/girlfriend. But there is no Tinder for friends, so how do you meet people? I think if you’ve got children its slightly easier as you’ve got other mums/dads at school, at play dates and your children make friends bringing you naturally together. But I’m 26 with no children and I’m really quite shy – without putting an ad in the yellow pages I was stuck for ideas.  Continue reading

A rainy bank holiday in Lavenham

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Happy Easter everyone!
I cannot believe it is the 2nd of April today, where on earth has the time between New Year and Easter gone? I hope you’re all filling your faces with chocolate, I’m currently face down in a vegan chocolate cake (you can see a pic on the ole ‘gram) – it’s the first vegan baking I’ve done and it turned out really well so expect to see more of that going forwards! Also I have to share with you lovely lot, I’m currently listening to The Weekend’s new EP ‘My Dear Melancholy’ and it’s absolutely wonderful, I’m obsessed with his music.

Anyway before I veer any further off topic, Lavenham. I don’t know if you know, but I’m a HUGE Harry Potter fan. I have been since that first book was released and I can’t step foot in Primark without leaving looking like I’ve been to some sort of convention. This was my initial reason for wanting to visit the small Suffolk town of Lavenham on Saturday. I don’t know about you but I like my Easter bank holiday weekend to be filled with walks, exploring and relaxation – often myself and Daniel will take ourselves off to a random town/city we haven’t been to before and go exploring. I had seen an article on Lavenham a few months ago and the topic was the Harry Potter film set.
The scenes in Godric’s Hollow, Harry Potter’s birthplace and house where he gained the infamous scar, were filmed in Lavenham! If you’re a fan you will know what I’m talking about, apologies if you don’t. Naturally anywhere which is anything remotely to do with Harry Potter draws me in, but it also was the pastel coloured medieval houses which I wanted to visit to see – hopefully you can tell from the pictures throughout this post why! Unfortunately the weather wasn’t the best for our visit so I will be making a beeline back there in the summer as the colours will look even more amazing in the sun. Continue reading

The best dairy free mac ‘n’ cheese

Gooey, comforting, delicious, sexy (?!) – All words to describe the joy that is mac and cheese. When I decided to stop eating meat and dairy, I started researching alternatives to the usual comfort food I enjoyed as I wasn’t prepared to live a life based purely on insta-gorgeous salad and lentil concoctions. Don’t get me wrong I am healthier, eat a wider variety of foods and am loving that veggie life – but sometimes you don’t want a saintly dinner and you want stodge. Essentially, that’s what you’re getting with this recipe – filling, creamy goodness – but it’s still better for you than the real cheesy deal so no guilt here!

Below you will find my favourite recipe for dairy free macaroni cheese, but this is by no means the only recipe out there. You will find variations made with cashews, butternut squash, different herbs and flavourings and made with different types of milk/dairy alternatives.

If you are vegan or thinking about trying it out, I would definitely say that I have found any of my old favourite meals can be made into a plant based recipe. There are SO many great alternatives ingredients out there, give some of them a go and play about – you’ll be amazed at what you can make without dairy or meat but still get a similar flavour.

SO, here is my recipe, apologies I haven’t taken more Nigella-esque pictures, but I’m certainly not a glam chef so best keep the paps on the food.

Ingredients:
Plain flour
Dairy free butter/spread (I use the Flora one pictured below)
Marmite
Non dairy milk (I use Oatly Organic)
Mustard powder (LONG LIVE COLMAN’S OF NORWICH!)
Macaroni pasta
Salt and pepper
Chives and breadcrumbs if you’re feeling fancy
Nutritional yeast
Nutmeg
Peas

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Continue reading

Wedding series, 2: The planning begins…

Happy Sunday! I hope you’re all enjoying this cold but gloriously sunny day, how rubbish is it that it’s meant to become virtually arctic next week – I am SO ready for spring to rear it’s beautiful head already.

Anyway, this isn’t the BBC Weather website, I’m back with the second instalment of my wedding series.  I hoped you enjoyed reading about my engagement – now is where it starts to get serious and the seemingly enormous task of planning the damn thing begins!

It is so hard to know where to begin when planning a wedding, there are a million and one things to take into consideration and knowing which order to do them in isn’t obvious. With the logistics of it all, the colour scheme, the budget, the timeline – it can all get a bit much and you do have to be super organised. My best friend Lauren has just bought me one of those cute wedding planner books and I feel it will super seed her in the best friend stakes and not leave my side! I’ve left a few links to ones which I like below (all Insta worthy of course!) Continue reading

A love letter to Amsterdam

Amsterdam I love youuuu, oh yes I doooo.

This week I was lucky enough to have my day job fly myself and around one hundred colleagues out to the Integrated Systems Event at the RAI, Amsterdam. (I work in the professional AV industry). Whilst this doesn’t immediately sound riveting, it did allow me to pop my Amsterdam cherry so to speak and I reallyyy liked it there.

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If you’ve ever been to the ‘dam I’m sure you will agree with me that it’s easy to fall in love with; Tall beautiful buildings, canals with picturesque bridges around every corner and leggy sophisticated women on bikes gliding effortlessly on every road. The tulips, the boutiques, the coffee shops (and I mean the legit coffee shops where you drink actual coffee, I’m not into the green stuff!), the glowing red streets at night and more food than you can shake a stick at.  Continue reading

Urban Jungle, Suffolk

Have you ever wondered what heaven looks like? All pearly white clouds, angels and cherubs right? Nope! To me it looks like Urban Jungle Suffolk, London Road, Beccles.

If you haven’t been to either branch of Urban Jungle (the Norfolk one is located in Costessey, Norwich) and you are King/Queen of the ‘gram, I would whip over there right this minute! Obviously I wouldn’t go somewhere JUST so I could Instagram it (heavens, no…) but this really is a budding photographers haven. Not to mention the delicious food, relaxing vibe and plants which are crying out to be bought (and if you’re anything like me, killed *sad face*). The Suffolk branch opened this summer after the success of it’s Norfolk big sister and I’m so glad it did considering it is 10 minutes from my house.

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Myself and Dan popped into this little slice of heaven today to have lunch and the menu really is mouth watering. I had sweet potato and coconut curry which was the only totally vegan option, but seeing as I love curry this was music to my ears! Daniel had the most scrummy looking plate of hummus and lamb, accompanied by home made flat bread. Needless to say everything was just as tasty as it looked, Dan even accompanied his lunch with an Aperol Spritz, how very modern man of him, ey!? I opted for a far less flamboyant Earl Grey which was good all the same. Continue reading

My favourite brunch spot in Bungay

So i’m writing this on a Sunday morning whilst watching Legally Blonde 2 – I literally only watched the first one a week ago, despite it being released in 2001, oops. Why didn’t anyone ever tell me how fabulous they were, it is making me feel like a 15 year old again and reminding me I really need to colour my hair and wear more pink.
So I really wanted to write this post for those local to myself on the Norfolk/Suffolk border and also for those who are planning to visit. I have been visiting The Earsham Street Cafe in Bungay for over a year now and it has never failed to be delicious.  Continue reading

Orford in a hurry

Picture the scene: It’s Saturday morning, you’ve slept in (rare treat), you check the ole BBC weather app and it tells you that you have approximately 4 hours until you need to get Noah on the phone and check into the ark. What you gonna do? Go on a mini adventure, of course! I mean, you could do adult things like clean the house, weed the garden, blah blah blahhhh but isn’t life too short for all of that whilst the sun is out?  Continue reading

A day that is good for the soul…

You may or may not know but I live on the Norfolk/Suffolk border close to a town called Beccles. Recently, I moved from Beccles only 8 miles down the road, but none the less I am no longer in walking distance from the town. I grew up in Beccles and so spent 23 years of my life there and I can truly say it is buried deep within my heart. In the same, glorious weekend I finally got the keys to my little love nest away from home in August 2015 (blog post to come on being a young first time buyer) I also gave up my career in hairdressing and started working for a local business in an office based, much more formal role. So really, although it was all my own doing and it is fully what I want, my life changed almost overnight. Now I don’t know about you, but I am good with change. I never look back and I am full steam ahead with plans, dreams and ambition. That being said, sometimes you really do need to just ‘check out’ and do something which makes your heart smile and not have to think about ‘adult things’ … (No, not that sort of adult thing! I mean paying bills, when will I have a baby, can I afford the expensive fabric softener sort of thing).  Continue reading