Wednesday, 30 July 2014

Best of R'n'B Playlist

So I'm currently trying to make better use of the playlist function on iTunes, as usually I just end up making On The Go lists with like two songs that I play on repeat. The first playlist I've been working on is my Best of R'n'B playlist. I'm not going to say that this is the quintessential R'n'B playlist, but I like to think it's pretty good. Of course, choosing ten songs out of the millions of great ones out there is not easy, but if you're looking for a place to start, these ten are pretty damn good.

1. I Want You | Cee Lo Green

This is a great song! In fact, this whole album is pretty special, definitely worth a listen. The only thing I don't like about this song is the line 'she's smart but she's still sexy'. Still. Can a woman not be both? I sing it as and instead.

2. Pretty Wings | Maxwell

I only really got into Maxwell recently, and still haven't listened to much of his stuff, but if it's all like this then I know I'm gonna love him. His cover of This Woman's Work is great, as is this cover of Pretty Wings (pretty sure all 50,000 views are me).

3. Untitled (How Does It Feel) | D'Angelo

This is such a good song, and ... the video helps. What's not to love, beautiful song, beautiful man, beautiful video. I also love the blunt ending of this song.

4. Adorn | Miguel

This is one of the most recent songs on my list, it was between this and Climax by Usher. I chose this though because it's a really fun song to sing (expect a cover).

5. Sexy Cinderella | Lynden David Hall

I only discovered this song, and Lynden himself, after I bought The Trevor Nelson Collection Vol. 2. This is a must have album for anyone who likes R'n'B, Hip Hop and funk, it spans several decades of fantastic music. Lynden David Hall was a British singer, described as Britain's answer to D'Angelo, but unfortunately he died, well before his time, in 2006. It's such a shame that this incredible artist never got the success he deserved. If you like this song make sure to check out his other work, I really rate his first album Medicine 4 My Pain, especially the title track.

6. Rocket | Beyonce

Dayuuuuuuuum, this song is so good. This is some real baby-makin music. It was tough to choose between this and Dance For You for this playlist, but I think Rocket just wins out. I think I'll have to do a Top Ten Beyonce playlist at some point.

7. Heaven | John Legend

Oh I love John Legend. I definitely prefer his earlier music to his more current work, but that's just me. This song is just great, especially the live versions (invest in the Live From Philadelphia album, So High on that is inSANE).

8. Pink and Blue | Andre 3000

Urgh, this whole album is fantastic, actually there's very little that Andre 3000 is involved in that I don't love.  A Day In The Life of Benjamin Andre is genius.

9. Confessions | Usher

This album was the first I ever bought with my own money. I used to listen to it all the time on my walkman, so I know all the words to all the songs. There's three different Confessions songs on the album, Confessions, Confessions (Interlude) and Confessions Part 2. I like them all, and the video kind of incorporates all of them.

10. Human Nature | Michael Jackson

I'm a huge Michael Jackson fan, who isn't? He practically invented music. Anyway this is a particularly slow-ish jam, that is just a perfect piece of music. I can also play this on the bass <3.

I know that some of these may not scream R'n'B, but I feel like the definition changes so frequently it's hard to pin it down. The genre is expected to encompass slow jams like Untitled, to more upbeat stuff like I Want You, and nowadays it seems to just be attributed to any music produced by an artist of colour. I've tried to incorporate everything that I think R'n'B music is about, but you could just as easily say that there is too little R'n'B in this playlist and that there isn't enough. Where's Prince for example? (This is another story, I think I'll do a whole other playlist for Prince. He's genre spanning, much like Andre 3000, or most of the artists in this playlist to be frank). Anyway, without writing myself out of writing this post, I hope you like the music!

Monday, 28 July 2014

What I'm Watching

So, I've mentioned my obsession with The Mindy Project, and my subsequent obsession with Chris Messina, but here you can see it in all it's glory. After finishing season two (i.e. catching up) I downloaded three of his films (yes, three), and I'm going to review them here. 

Damn this film was so good. Just watching the trailer again made me tear up (I know, what's new? I'm an emotional wreck). This is the kind of film I want to make. Like, wow. The films follows two characters through their nights (and occasional days) spent in, you guessed it, 28 Hotel Rooms. I love that the premise is so simple, there's loads of room to develop characters and story. Coming out of this film you feel like you've spent 10 years with these characters, watching them, and their relationship, grow. You feel like the third person in the relationship (are we the hotel room?). Both the actors are incredible, which I guess they have to be in a film with just two people in, but they really stand out, and make the whole thing believable and heart-wrenching. 
The film starts with a one night stand, but over the course of what I assume must be about ten years, their relationship develops into something more. Where it's great to watch these two characters get closer and fall in love, it's really sad to know that outside the hotel rooms their paths are continuing to diverge, making it harder and harder for them to ever be together. I hope nothing like this ever happens to me, I don't think I could stand it. Overall I thought this film was really great, and would recommend it to everybody. I thought I'd be able to write more, but I think you just need to see it.
I didn't even watch the trailer for this one, but I'm glad I didn't. I like going into films not knowing what's going to happen, especially nowadays where I feel that studios tend to give everything away in the trailer. This film is so sweet, it follows a man and a woman, both lost souls, searching for purpose and meaning in life (I think we can all relate). I watched this straight after 28 Hotel Rooms, and definitely noticed the difference in budget. Hello HD! Hello outside world!

Anyway, so the main story arc is the blossoming relationship between Janice and Tim, a silver, stilt-wearing, street performer known as The Giant Mechanical Man. It's nice to see these two drifters find stability in each other, especially after watching the not-so-simple love story in 28 Hotel Rooms. This film gives you hope, one of the characters even says something along the lines of 'it just takes one person to make you feel like you belong', I hope they're right. 

The secondary characters are also pretty great, from Janice's sister who, just wanting the best for her, sets her up with Topher Grace's over-confident motivational speaker, to the various bosses Janice has throughout. This is a great film with a pretty uplifting message, it definitely did improve my outlook on life, if only for a little while.  


So, in this 90 minute film, a grand total of zero things happened. This doesn't mean I didn't like the film, I just feel like nothing happened, and I'm not used to that in a film (is anybody?). A typical film tends to introduce all the characters and background in the first thirty minutes, then something happens, and the rest of the film is spent dealing with it. This whole film was like that first 30 minutes, slow. We spend all our time with these three guys who grew up in the same town. One of them moved away, but is back for his fathers' funeral. I think this is meant to be 'the thing' that happens, the wild friend returns from his nomadic life, but, nothing changed. After he came back, everything was still the same! They just hung out at bars and strip clubs (:/). 

I actually quite liked this film. Hold the phone! Even after saying all that stuff before? Yep, what can I say, I like getting a glimpse into other people's lives. My friends tease me for loving One Tree Hill, because 'nothing' happens in that (not true, but that's a whole other post), but it's easy to watch, and I love the characters. I liked the characters in this film, they all grew up the same way in the same town, but are all completely different. It shows how people can be thrown onto such different paths, and how growing up is hard to do (something I'm all too familiar with). In their mid-thirties, one of the guys is living a pretty steady life as a single dad, one of them is still living recklessly, spending his time and money on drugs, alcohol and strippers, and one is a lost soul, he doesn't know where he is in his life, or where he wants it to go. I could relate to all of these characters in one way or another, and I liked that.

Although this film most definitely did NOT pass the Bechdel Test (why was Sarah Paulson even there?), I still enjoyed it, and would watch it again, if only for how good Chris Messina looks with a beard in a suit jacket. 

(I'm starting to feel like all my reviews are a bit too nice, I need to start watching and reading things I don't like to even up the stakes a bit). 

Sunday, 27 July 2014

Friday Favourites: Strawberries

Summer is most definitely here, and what's more summery than strawberries? (Quite a lot probably, but) I'm going to use this opportunity to share some of my favourite strawberry-related things. Here goes!
This print as wallpaper would be so great!
These nails are incredible, actually everything this girl does is awesome!
Could do with these right now.
How cute is this shirt!
Love Cath Kidston's Strawberry print, I actually have this mug.

Monday, 21 July 2014

Dolly On ... Little Mix

I'm planning on starting a series (Dolly On ...), where I discuss my opinions on all sorts of things, from music and musicians, to film and TV, to deeper things like politics, religion and social constructs. I have pretty strong opinions, and I love to share them with people. I just hope you enjoy reading them! I have so many ideas for this series, but I'm going to start with Little Mix, because I was just flicking through the music channels saw How Ya Doin', and just had to write something down! 

Firstly, I'd like to point out that Little Mix have some really great songs, like Move and How Ya Doin'. These days everyone is obsessed with the 90s, and yet not with Little Mix? To me, their songs are incredibly 90s. How Ya Doin' is straight up 90s Pop/R'n'B. All four of the girls in Little Mix have GREAT voices, and it's a shame that people don't really get to hear this on their tracks (I feel the same way about Jessie J). If you find videos of them singing live, their vocals are incredible, and they obviously spend a lot of time working on their harmonies. I think maybe that's another reason that, today, younger people are into acts like this, as they have the chance, and ability, to watch videos of their favourite artists. Videos of them singing, or chatting, or joking around. The music industry today is about SO much more than just the music, which can work well for some people, but not so well for others. 

I think it's incredibly hard for a girl group to be successful nowadays. Most people who buy music are young girls, who want to spend their money hearing young boys singing about how they're perfect, and don't need to change etc. Does this mean that young girls don't like music made by women? No, but I think they're less open to it to begin with. Over time they might grow to become super fans, like we're seeing in America, but I think for young girls in this day and age, being told they're beautiful trumps being told they're a strong, independent woman. 

So, we've got the young girls on board, but what about the young boys? When you're young, it's all about fitting in, and, for boys this usually means showing no emotion, unless of course it's to do with sports. Liking, and promoting this like for a girl band, is not the thing for a young boy to do if he wants to seem 'cool' and that he doesn't really care about things. Girlbands lose out with boys. Maybe in the future, when men and women truly are equal, female bands will get some of the success they deserve. 
I also think that, the older you get, the more likely you are to want to find 'credible' acts to put your faith in. Whether this is a personal preference, or because you want to fit in to society's idea of what a 'grown up' should be, this is bad news for girl and boys bands alike. I don't know why bands like Little Mix and One Direction seem less credible than say, Coldplay or the Arctic Monkeys. Is is because they're young? Or because they don't play their own instruments? Because they're music is classed as 'pop'? Is it because they don't write their own songs? This is a pet peeve of mine, when people discredit artists for not writing their own songs. Actors don't write their own scripts. Also, even people who do 'write their own songs' tend to write them with a team. Sometime artists are given writing credits just for being in the same room when the song was written! To me, if you like singing, and are good at it, then who am I to discredit you because you don't also have the talent to write a hit song.

So why aren't Little Mix as successful as they should be? I think there's many reasons they've not had the success they deserve in the UK, one being the fact they started on the X Factor. I think in the US, where, thankfully, Little Mix seem to be taking off right now, the public are more open to acts that started on reality shows. I know people like Carrie Underwood, Adam Lambert and 5th Harmony are still incredibly popular. Here in the UK however, it's different, I feel that people immediately discount anyone who's taken the reality TV route to success. Whether this is because we see it as a sell-out, or don't think these people deserve what they've been given, or are just a generally pessimistic country, reality TV show acts don't seem to do so well here (with the major exception of One Direction, but I don't think anyone was expecting that meteoric rise to fame). I'm sure, knowing that Little Mix started on the X Factor has led certain people to not even give them a chance. If these people actually listened to some of their music, they'd realise than Little Mix are actually pretty great.

To read the rest of the Dolly On ... series, click here!

Friday, 18 July 2014

This Week Vol. 2

Watching The Mindy Project and, don't judge, Big Brother UK (I'm slightly obsessed)

Listening to Ed Sheeran's new album Multiply and Cheryl's new single Crazy Stupid Love

Enjoying the really great weather in London at the moment

Reading nothing at the moment, but just got The Casual Vacancy from the library

Trying to find the time to paint my nails and bake a cake

Wearing maxi dresses, they're SO perfect for this weather

Favouriting these, this app, and this

Wanting to dye my hair blue, for real this time, but ...

Dreading the bleaching process

Wednesday, 16 July 2014

How To: DIY Tyre Planters

Since January, I have been helping to renovate the community garden in the area where I live. The garden has been closed for fifteen years, and in that time it turned into a jungle. Early tasks included cutting back all the overgrown tree branches, mulching the flower-beds, removing the corpse of a dead bird (!), sweeping, and more sweeping. All this stuff was tough, but it meant that later on we got to complete some more creative projects to bring a bit of personality to the garden.

The project I want to talk about today is the tyre planters we created to cover up some of the holes and areas of uneven ground that come about after fifteen years of unruly tree roots. My dad actually mentioned the idea in passing, but me and my mum took it and ran with it! We googled  ‘tyre planters’ and the results were so gorgeous, that they filled us with even MORE ideas.

Our budget for this garden is pretty minimal, so anything we want to do has to be done on the cheap. For this project we used recycled tyres that were donated to us, meaning that the only costs were paint, lining and flowers!

Step One: Acquire The Tyres

This one could be a bit tricky. We headed to our local garage, explained our situation, and they were more than happy to donate some tyres to the cause! I’m not too sure how else you’d get hold of tyres, maybe from an old car, or maybe you’ve found some on the side of the road? If you really want to try this, but don’t have access to any tyres, then I would definitely recommend going to your nearest car repair shop or garage like we did. After all, if you don’t ask, you wont get!

Step Two: Clean Them!

Wherever you got your tyres from, chances are they’ll need a good clean. We cleaned ours with some warm soapy water and a scrubbing brush to remove any ingrained dirt.

Step Three: Base Coat!

When your tyres are completely dry, it’s time to apply the base coat. We used white masonry paint, and I would highly recommend it. I bought it from a specialist paint shop, but I’m sure you could get it at any DIY-type store. I applied two coats of this paint, letting it dry fully between each one. The reason we applied this base coat was to make the coloured paint stand out more, and to help it stay on the tyres. 

Step Four: Paint Your Tyres!

OK, so this is the fun part. Not that the other steps haven’t been, but this is what you’ve been waiting for, I can tell. At this point you should have some gorgeous white tyres, and you may be happy with them staying this colour, we did in fact leave a few white because we loved them so much!

To get the colours we wanted, firstly we tried out spray paint. I was so up for this, I haven’t used spray paint before, and thought it would be pretty badass. The spray paint was expensive, about £7 per can, and each can covered one tyre (in some cases not even one (see the dark blue tyre)!). Also, the colours of the spray paint weren’t the nicest. We wanted Cath Kitson-esque, pastel coloured tyres, and the spray paints were a bit too strong.

After trying out a few spray paint colours, blue, purple and green, we decided that the best option would be to mix up our own colours. Being the scrimpers that we are, we decided to mix up the masonry paint we had left with acrylics we had lying around the house. By doing this we achieved the EXACT effect we wanted. We created colours that looked good enough to eat, and were able to paint multiple tyres in the same colour. 

Step Five: Turn The Tyre Into A Planter

So, the end goal here is to fill the tyres with soil yes? Well, soil is expensive, and we don’t want to waste it. Soo … we needed to find a way to fill the inner rim of the tyre, so that it wasn’t filled with soil (because this would be wasteful. Are you following?). You may have different ideas of how you want to do this, but I think the way we did it is the easiest and most environmentally friendly. We filled the space with rubbish. Not rubbish out of the bin, but garden rubbish. This mostly consisted of rocks and trimmed tree branches.

You may be thinking ‘eww I don’t want rubbish inside my newly, beautifully painted tyres’, but why not? To me, it’s a win-win! You can get rid of the rubbish that’s been hanging around in big bags in your garden, you can encourage bugs and insects into your garden by creating a ‘mini-beast hotel’, AND you can join the ranks of a 'true recycler'. What’s not to love?

Once you’ve filled those edges in, it’s time to line the tyre. We used some garden liner, you can find this is your local DIY-store, garden centre, or online. The important bit is that it is breathable, as you don't want your plants to drown. You can secure this however you’d like, with duct tape or staples, or you may even like the way the liner looks sticking out a bit.

Last part of this step, fill the tyre with your chosen soil! Woo! We made it, only one more step to go.

Step Six: Plant. Your. Flowers.

I wont pretend to be any kind of an expert on gardening, I’m not even an amateur really, but I will tell you which plants we chose to put in our tyres. We put various flowering plants in our tyres, as we wanted them to be pretty and colourful. We put in nasturtiums, calendula, and some smaller plants we had around the garden. We wanted flowers in our tyres, but you may well want to use them as mini vegetable patches etc.

Bonus Step: Arranging The Tyres

Depending on how you're going to use your tyres, you'll want to arrange them in different ways. We wanted ours to cover big holes in the ground, so we wanted more tyres on the bottom, with just a few on the top. If you want to plant vegetables, and things with deep roots, then maybe you'll want to pile the tyres directly on top of each other. If you do do this, bear in mind you'll have to rethink the lining.

We were a bit slap dash with our colours, we mixed up what we wanted and painted in straight on. You may have a more specific idea of what you want, I think ombre tyres would look great! You can also paint patterns on the tyres, or write out words or names. The world really is your oyster for this one!

Disclaimer: this is my first DIY post, don't be too harsh!

Monday, 14 July 2014

What I'm Reading # 1

All the way back in January I set myself a goal to read 52 books this year. That's a book a week. I was so excited to do this, because I absolutely LOVE reading, but lets just say it didn't go to plan. By the end of week three I'd read three books, two good ones (The Life of Pi and Brave New World), and one pretty awful one (The Time Keeper), and was on track to completing my goal. However, I only got round to starting book four in ... JUNE! That's four bookless months. Granted, I was busy with my final year of university and stuff, but, truth be told, I was slacking. I thought if I made a pact to post on the blog, as frequently as required, the books I'm reading and have read, it'll push me to actually read them!

Soooo ... on to the subject of this post, what I'm reading right now. Since finishing uni about 3 weeks ago I've read two books, and am onto my third. I'm really enjoying this challenge, and have lucked out on choosing some really great books (I'm one of those people who finds it really hard to finish a book if I don't like it, that's half the reason I didn't read anything between January and June. It wasn't for lack of trying!).

I LOVED this book! Everything about it struck a cord with me. I do think that sometimes I take away more from books and TV than other people do (or even than the author put in there!), so for all I know you might've hated this book. I never used to understood how people could look at paintings and draw these incredible, life-affirming conclusions from them, but in the past few years, as I'm sure I've mentioned over and over again, my views on life, the universe and everything have completely changed. I used to be the one taking the piss out of the teacher for saying something about a rock symbolising the authors' ongoing struggle with depression and being a metaphor for the state of affairs at that time. But now, I'm one of them!

The themes that arose in this book, for me, were, not fitting in, the struggle to find yourself in an inflexible education system, the concept of intelligence, age and ageing, friendship, growing up, the struggle of knowing what the right thing to do is, and if what you think is right is necessarily what other people agree with. I'm at the stage in my life where I question everything, and this book made me feel ok about that. Age is just a number, a friendship between a teenager and a retired old man is no less meaningful than one between two people the same age. It made me think about education, and everything I perceive to be wrong with the current system in Britain (an around the world); it only works for certain types of people, it works to amplify certain, agreeable qualities, and stamp out those unique qualities that make people who they are.

Overall I loved this book, and would recommend it to everyone, irrespective of how old you are. Without spoiling it anymore than I already have, I also loved how it started at the end. I'm a nerd. But I was reading this around the same time I was catching up on Hannibal Season 2, and they do the same thing there, they start with the end of the last episode, and then work through the series to explain how they got there. I think this adds another dimension to reading, as you as the reader (or watcher) are looking to draw together the strands to lead you to the known conclusion. I feel that I read into it more if I know what's going to happen, or even form a stronger bond to the characters. Five Stars!

This book I discovered by accident, I was reading through a past issue of Wired Magazine, and spotted a picture that drew me to read the article. It was of a woman standing in front of a 'murder wall', there were strings between pictures, post-it notes and newspaper cuttings, exactly the type of thing I like! So I went out to Waterstones and bought it #supportinghighstreetretailers! Considering both of these books were pretty random choices, I did quite well this month.

This book was right up my street. It merged two of my favourite things, time travel and murder. Ok, murder isn't really my favourite thing, but lets just say I did spend about a year of my life watching every SINGLE episode of Criminal Minds. It's interesting OK?! So, anyway, a time-travelling murderer, how does that work? Very well in my opinion. The author had obviously spent a lot of time researching the different time periods that the killer goes through, from the 30s right up to the 90s, and this made the whole thing seem authentic, and dare I say, believable. As the reader we follow two main timelines, the decade-jumping, back and forth one of the killer, and the pretty linear one of the girl that got away.

All in all I thought this book was great. The chapters are each focussed on a particular character, something I like a lot, even when these particular characters don't stick around for long! The book is very clever, especially how everything comes together at the end. I have to admit, there's a bit towards the end where I shouted in shock, but I'll leave you to decide when that was. Again, I'd have to give this book five stars!

I never thought I'd see the day I'd be picking up a book from the Business section of Waterstones! This isn't the kind of book I usually read. But ... I'd heard rave reviews, and thought it could be interesting. Turns out I was right, this book's great! I can't wait to hear everyone else's opinions at the end of the month in the ABM Bookclub. 

Sophia Amoruso manages to creates a incredibly relatable, informative book by blending autobiographical content with business tips and motivational anecdotes. It's great to hear first hand exactly how she made it to the top. I often find that when successful people are asked about how they got there they tend to be quite indirect, so it was a refreshing change to be told the exact steps that made a directionless young woman into a multi-millionaire. 

If you buy this book for no other reason, there is a great chapter towards the end on hiring and firing, where Sophia gives some really insightful tips on CV and cover letter writing which is a great resource for everyone. Sophia doesn't attribute her success to luck, but to her consistent hard work. You wont come out of this book with unrealistic expectations for your future, but instead with the drive and determination to work that little bit harder to become a #GIRLBOSS. 

Volume Two | Volume Three

Friday, 11 July 2014

Friday Favourites

Bought myself these plates on sale. So cute!

LOVE the smell of this

Just bought these on sale at Scribbler for £1.50! Can't wait to use them. 

Love this skort and shoe combo
  1. I wish I was this brave! 
  2. This hair tutorial for getting non-frizzy, beachy waves in the summer. Even though my hair is still pretty short, I'm keeping this post filed for future reference. 
  3. How could I not love reading this?
  4. Ahhh she dresses so well. Love this and this!
  5. Great thoughts on blog writing. Elise is such an awesome teacher. 

Thursday, 10 July 2014

This Week Vol. 1

I've done a lot in the past week, which is unusual for me! I've been on a picnic, visited my old school, been shopping in Westfield, been to Brighton, to the V-delicious show, the Parsons Green Fair, and to a British Summer Time concert in Hyde Park! One thing I've noticed while trying to compile this post is that I NEED to take more photos! 

Me and a friend took a pretty spur of the moment trip to Brighton last Friday. The weather was fantastic, and I even managed to have a dip in the sea! For those of you who live in the UK, you'll know how rare that is! We had lunch in an awesome diner style restaurant, where we got a basket of the BIGGEST onion rings ever! After spending an afternoon wandering around the town I've decided that I need to move there. ASAP.

On Saturday I headed over to the V-delicious show over in Olympia, and you can read all about that here.

 On Sunday I went to one of the British Summer Time gigs in Hyde Park! The line-up was incredible. I couldn't not get a ticket. McBusted were headlining, supported by the Backstreet Boys! I'm the BIGGEST fan of the BSBs. Like seriously huge. I also got to see Scouting For Girls who are my guilty pleasure band, even though I'm starting to feel more confident about sharing my love for them with other people.

I had the best time I've had in a long time. It reminded me how much I love live music, and reestablished my dream to have a job in the music industry. Reading my posts you probably think I'm a nervous wreck, tearing up at the smallest things, but, I do have to admit that I did well up watching Scouting For Girls. I hadn't been to a gig for so long, and they were so good, and I love them and everything was just so happy. All in all a good day, so good in fact that I think I'm having a bout of post-concert depression. I've got so many more pictures, so I'll definitely do a full post, but not till I'm totally out of my funk. 

Here's to next week being just as good!

Tuesday, 8 July 2014

A Day at V-Delicious

This past weekend I found myself at the V-Delicious Show, an event showcasing the biggest names in the vegetarian and vegan world, as well as some fantastic up and comers. I managed to spend a good few hours sampling, buying and chatting to the sellers.

I can't not start with how I got in, because I got in for free! Woo! A lady came up to me as I was walking in and gave me a free ticket. Pretty awesome, huh? I think the tickets were only about £10, but it was pretty good to have that extra bit of cash to spend inside (which I did, and then some!).

It was pretty packed inside the venue, as there were actually 4 or 5 shows going on at once: V-Delicious, the Allergy and Free From Show, the Back Pain show, an Organic Food Show, and potentially one other. I was actually quite disappointed that the Vegetarian/Vegan Show had the fewest stalls, as that was all I really wanted to see. Anywho... what was there was great!

I discovered this absolutely GREAT product that I would (and will) recommend to all my friends, vegans and meat-eaters alike. What is this dream product, I hear you ask - Rebel Kitchen Mylk. I probably wouldn't even have gone up to the stall if it hadn't been for their fantastic design, as there were too many people there, and I am NOT a fan of crowds. Their design is perfect. I wish I'd done it! It's fun and quirky, but still manages to remain wholesome and 'healthy' looking. The font's fantastic, and the logo. Even the shape of the cartons is great! Anyway, I'll stop my fangirling and just tell you to buy some! I tried all three 'adult flavours', Chai was my favourite, then Green Tea and Chocolate (and I don't even normally like chocolate flavoured things!). They also have three flavours tailored more to children, banana, chocolate orange and chocolate again.

I looked round some more stalls, sampled some Nakd Bars, not that I needed to, I buy them often enough. But .. free!? I also got to try these AWESOME Caribbean Patties, but I can't remember what they were called :( They were absolutely delicious, and I will definitely try and create something similar for the blog.  Aside from these things, everything else was pretty much the same: Milk! Soya Milk, Coconut Milk, Almond Milk, Rice Milk etc. I had my fill.

After this I stumbled into the Vegan Society 40s Tea Party. There were only about 30 seats, and to be honest, all I was really looking for was a sit down. Anyway, this was a pretty good move on my part, as everyone in the room was showered with free food. I got to try soooo many vegan treats, from cheese and chorizo to crisps, cakes and the best vegan brownie I have EVER had! Not only this, but as I was leaving I got a goodie bag that was packed full of even MORE goodies! All in all, a good place to find a seat.

At this point I was feeling pretty good, my total spend was £1.50 (on a Rebel Kitchen Chai Drink), and I'd managed to get in, have about £10 worth of samples, and another £10 worth of swag! Woo! So, classic me, I then went and spent £15 on a book. Not just any book though, 'The Naughtiest Vegan Cakes Around' by Ms Cupcake. This is a book filled to the brim with vegan cake and cookie recipes that you would never know were cruelty free. I had a flick through at the stall and couldn't put it down. I knew I had to have it. They sweetened the deal by giving me two free cakes. Yum!

Overall a good time was had by all (me), and I can't wait to work my way through all my goodies, and the Ms Cupcake Cookbook!

Hope you had a good weekend.