Busy Busy…

Just popping in with a quick post this morning…busy day ahead!

I made a school girl error this morning with breakfast, it was really tasty and I did enjoy it but it’s left me feeling very cold on this wintery morning!

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I’ve just turned off my freezer as tomorrow is the big moving day (!!) and had some frozen bananas and blueberries to use up so I whipped up protein smoothie.  This one included:

  • 1/2 a frozen banana
  • a handful of frozen blueberries
  • 3/4 cup greek yogurt
  • a heaped tablespoon pulsin rice protein

topped off with tasty granola for some crunch, with a huge mug of green tea on the side and eaten underneath a cozy blanket with a hot water bottle!!! 🙂

Yesterday in the afternoon I headed to Costa to get some of my assignment done…I had 2 decaf Americanos (got one free because a group of kids let off a stink bomb right next to where I was working!), also took with me some greek yogurt and blueberries to snack on…

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just realised this cup was a bit dirty!!..oops!

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don’t you love the colours you get when you swirl berries into yogurt??

I had a pretty productive couple of hours and managed to pretty much finish another assignment so I’ve got one more to finish (I’ve done half so far) and then just checking for errors etc, I really need to hand them in tomorrow before I leave.

House wise, I’m fairly organised (I think!) at the moment it kind of just feels like one big mess, but I think once the removals men collect everything in the morning I’ll see that its just a few bits and bobs and some cleaning left to do…at least thats what I’m hoping anyway :S!

Question: Do you like cold breakfasts in t

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House Renovation Part 3…

Following on from my before and after pics of downstairs, I thought it would be good to show you upstairs as well..

Main bedroom before..

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and after…

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Second bedroom before…

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and after…

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So that was our 1st project!! I would love for James and me to do another house or 2 in the next couple of years, money permitting!  At the moment we’re scrimping and saving just to live and get by so maybe when business starts moving for him and I graduate and get a real job again…I can’t wait for that 1st paycheck!!

This weekends has mainly been packing (the house no longer looks like it does in these photos!).  I’ve been feeling quite under the weather, lethargic and generally down.

Since I’ve been feeling under the weather, last week I didn’t go to any of my usual gym classes but I wasn’t feeling any better so on Friday I thought maybe I need to move, thats why I’m feeling rubbish so decided to do an online yoga class I do quite regularly and usually enjoy, but half an hour in I was shaking and just couldn’t hold my body up in any of the poses!  very frustrating!!

I think its been a combination of tiredness, the weather, stress and generally spending too much time just at home alone, I’d really like to think its my hormones coming back but so far there’s no sign of them.

Thankfully though my Mum and Dad came up yesterday and made me go out with them, just for a coffee down the road and it did me the world of good.  I felt much better mentally afterwards and managed to get to the gym for step this morning…I got through it but despite having my step on the lowest level I still struggled to keep up, and my arms were aching all the way through…not sure whats going on with my body but I am trying my best to honour it and go with what it needs :)…making progress!!

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Breakfast this morning is a repeat of Friday’s, the old faithful avocado on toast + coffee.

As you can see in the background, I’ve been busy packing…good job really seeing as I had a call from my removal man last night, asking if he could collect Wednesday morning (instead of Thursday) to deliver Thursday in Ipswich as it’s such a long drive.  That works well for me because it means I can drive down Wednesday, James and I can go and get the keys and be pretty organised (unusual for me!!) on Thursday.  It also means though that I feel slightly panicky as I have 3 lab reports to hand in on Thursday and lots of errands to run between now and then!!

Good news is…the sun is SHINING!! I’m off to meet my Mum and Dad for coffee before my Dad comes to help me with man jobs like taking down lights 😉

Question: How do you cheer yourself up when you feel down?

L x

End of an Era

Yesterday was my last shift at Starbucks here in Liverpool :(!!

Thankfully I managed to transfer my contract to another store in Ipswich which means I get to stay with the company (I just couldn’t let go of all that free coffee!!) and managed to negotiate a 4 hour contract to start with.

I’ve mentioned a few times the amount of Uni work I’ve got going on at the moment and over the next 6 weeks.  Well after that it doesn’t let up for a little longer; I have exams over April and May which will mean 2 things…1. I need LOTS of time to study for them (there is some serious biochemistry involved!) and 2. I will have to make the 9hr round trip in my car 3 times over those 2 months! So as I’m not going to have much free time, not being committed to lots of hours suits me perfectly.  After my exams, hopefully I’ll be able to get lots more hours and start earning some more money!!

We made the decision to move to Ipswich so that James could join his 2 brother’s in a business they started a couple of years ago.  It’s an IT/techie business (I don’t really understand!!!) but they were starting to run short on man power and needed someone to join them, to develop the business and grow it to the ‘next level’.. James is really great at building relationships with people and so is perfect for the job!! What this means though, is that with him on a new business venture and me about to start my final year of study, money is very tight 😦 so I’ll need as many hours as I can possibly get from June onwards!!

I have to say I felt slightly emotional when I left work yesterday, I think mainly because it’s been such an important part of my recovery and the girls I’ve worked with have been so supportive, so it really did feel like the end of an era!!

I’m moving on though to the next stage in my life which I’m ready for :).

Breakfast today (whilst looking out the window at the SNOW – in March…really!!) included avocado that I managed to grab in the reduced section yesterday and toast…

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and lots of coffee of course!

Now I’m off to do some more packing!

Questions; have you got any nice plans for the weekend? How do you multitask when you have lots of different things going on in your life at the same time?

Happy Friday!

 

L x

House Renovation Part 2…

Good Morning,

Continuing with the house renovation theme…

When I eventually moved in my Mum and I talked a lot about what direction we were going to go in design wise.  We agreed we needed a theme that was neutral, but not boring and slightly unique.  I knew to sell it quickly, we had to create a look that would make young people/couples like myself  and James walk in and immediately see themselves living here.  I think we managed to do it quite well in the end :).  Here’s some before and after photos of downstairs…

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We opened up the doorway to create an open room that was still slightly separated the kitchen/diner, ripped out the old kitchen and replace the floor with a neutral wood that went all the way through…

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Ripped out put in a whole new bathroom…

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That bathroom cause me an unbelievable amount of stress!!…thankfully it all worked out in the end but it was definitely a struggle…I spent 4 days showering at the gym and got through 3 toilets trying to find one that would fit!

Putting up these pictures for you has made me realise how much I’m going to miss this place!!…I’ll follow up with upstairs photo’s tomorrow.

Where has this week gone…I can’t believe its Friday tomorrow and I still have 7 assignments to do.

I hope you’re having a great week.

L x

My 1st house

So I’ve mentioned I’m moving house!! (exciting!!)

Well last August I bought a house with my parents to renovate and live in.  We’d talked about doing for quite a long time but they lived in Italy and I had just started university and to be honest I wasn’t really healthy enough; mentally or physically to attempt such a task.   As the university year started coming to an end though, I was in a much better place and so started looking around Liverpool for properties that were in need of some TLC.  Given the economic situation in the UK, I knew if we were going to do it we needed to be smart, really do our research and make sure there was potential to make some good money!

I started driving out of the city centre to more residential parts of town and getting a feel for the different areas…checking out local amenities, parks, schools etc.  After a few weeks of doing this I made some phone calls to estate agents and booked to see as many houses as I could with an aim of seeing what was out there and what value for money looked like…I saw so many I couldn’t possible tell you an exact number but it was a lot!! I was pretty fed up of it after a few weeks…especially trying to keep up good communication with my Mum and Dad via Skype who were living in Italy and obviously wanted to be sure their money would be invested well…I suppose given the fact it was the first time I’d seriously looked at properties (and I’m not really one for creativity!!) they were a little cautious and nervous of both my descriptions and perceptions of how much potential different houses had (being a newbie and all that 😉 !!).

Anyway…eventually I found a lovely little area, close to a beautiful park, a good school,  with easy to access shops and a great street of urban café’s and restaurants  within walking distance…perfect for young professional people (like myself ;)).  I decided it would be a really good area to sell in and set on a mission to find a house that needed some work (but not TOO much) that I could live in and renovate at the same time…and so I found…

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I moved in at the end of August 2012 and with lots of hard work and help from my amazing Mum we managed to transform the place and we sold it after 1 week on the market for more than the asking price…result!!

I will be posting some before and after pics throughout this week…I hope you enjoy!!

For now though, breakfast this morning…

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I fancied a change this morning so opted for greek yogurt with a (hidden) blob of flax peanut butter topped with granola…mixing things up a bit 🙂

I just had a horrible experience though, what felt like some kind of allergic reaction… I got all hot and came out in a bright red, burning rash all over my upper body…

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please excuse my tired ‘morning’ face!!

Thankfully it’s started to go down and I’m not feeling so panicky!

Hope you have a great Wednesday!

L x

The Big Move…

Good Morning!

Yesterday was a much better day productivity wise, I managed to get LOTS of housework done and also completely finish one assignment..one down 8 to go :(! at least it’s a start!!

I also had a visit from the lady who is buying my house, she came round to make sure her wardrobe will fit (I like her style!!) and she’s excited to move in next week so it’s full steam ahead…I booked a removals van today so I really must get busy packing, these things always take longer than I think they will!

This is my plan of action:

  • Today – Lounge – pack books, dvds, ornaments, candles etc.
  • Wednesday – Wardrobe – most of my wardrobe I won’t wear between now and next week so I’ll get most of it packed up & empty and pack draws under my bed and bedside tables
  • Thursday – I’m working my last Starbucks shift :(! so probably won’t get much done!
  • Friday – Kitchen – pack most crockery, leaving one plate, bowl, mug and set of cutlery
  • Saturday – Clear out cupboard under the stairs
  • Sunday – Clean out kitchen cupboards
  • Monday – Take down and pack curtains and pictures
  • Tuesday – Turn off and empty fridge/freezer, pack food cupboards
  • Wednesday – Last minute cleaning, put together a list of numbers, alarm codes etc for the new owner
  • Thursday – pack my car, drop keys at estate agents and start the 5hr drive to my new home in Ipswich with my wonderful boyfriend James!….how exciting!

In between this I really should work on the 7 assignments I have to hand in over the next 6 weeks, so it looks like I’ve got a busy week ahead!! breaking it down into smaller chunks like this should make it easier…I hope!!

Breakfast this morning is another bowl of the super creamy oats that i’m loving at the moment 🙂 – my ‘recipe’ is now available here

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deelish!

I’m off to the gym now for a ‘legs bums and tums’ class – haven’t done this one before so hopefully it’s a good one!

Questions: Do you have any house moving advice? Is there any ‘must do’s’ I’ve missed of my list?!

L x

Super Creamy Oats

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These might possibly be the creamiest bowl of oats you will ever taste!

Ingredients (serves 1):

20g (2tbsp) medium cut oatmeal

20g (2tbsp) rolled oats

1 egg

1tsp vanilla extract

0.5tsp cinnamon

150ml milk of choice – I use organic cow’s milk or almond milk but you could use rice/oat/soy or water, but this won’t give quite as creamy result

Method:

  • place oats, vanilla, cinnamon and milk of choice in a small saucepan and leave to soak for approx. 5 mins
  • turn the heat to medium-low heat for 3-4 minutes stirring with a wooden spoon
  • after about 4 minutes (when the oats have soaked up most of the liquid) take the pan away from the direct heat and crack in the egg stirring quickly until the egg is completely mixed in (you need to work quickly to stop the egg scrambling) at this point the oats will be quite runny
  • turn the heat right down and put the pan back on the low heat, keep stirring until they become thick and custard like
  • top with your chosen topping and devour!

A few of my favourite toppings…

banana & peanut butter

berries & toasted seeds

chopped/grated apple & almond butter

fruit & greek yogurt

 

L x

Weekend Recap…

Happy Monday everyone!!

I thought I’d start the week off with a few pictures I managed to snap and a little summary of my weekend.  I had Saturday off work this week which was nice.  Although I did get in a great workout…I felt like the day was a bit of a flop, I started with great intentions including plans of getting some (lots) of house work done as well finishing 2 of the assignments I’m part way through.

I didn’t manage to achieve any of these things though :(, spending the morning watching Saturday morning cooking shows (until 11.30am!!) going to my boxing class at 12pm then running some errands at the retail park, I ended up spending a good few hours browsing the shops and by the time I got home I was feeling pretty tired.  Somehow I managed to spend the rest of the day catching up on ‘Call the Midwife’…so all in all I didn’t really do anything productive and felt pretty fed up, annoyed with myself and guilty by bedtime!!

Sunday was slightly better, with a SUPER sweaty Step class early morning followed by work at Starbucks.  I still didn’t manage to get any housework or studying done but at least I earned some money!!

Tomorrow however…is a brand new day! and a chance to get those things done (I hope!)

I did manage to have some lovely eats over the weekend…and take pictures (!!)…

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Breakfast on Saturday and Sunday (yes it was that good!) – super creamy vanilla, cinamon, egg whipped oats with toasted pumpkin seeds and homemade peanut flax butter…yummy and really helped me power through both of my workouts.

p.s. recipe to follow tomorrow 🙂

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Lunch on Sunday…this was one of best sandwiches I’ve had in a long time!! I’m not sure if it was because I was soo hungry after my Step class or it was just a great sandwich! -smoked ham, coleslaw, cheese…toasted – enough said!

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Dinner on Saturday night – buckwheat ‘pasta’ with ham, leeks, peas and garlic cream cheese

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A super easy dinner for when I finish work late like I did last night – pan seared salmon with crispy greens

I’ve also been dipping into my Nutribox for lots of snacks..I don’t think they’re going to last very long 🙂

Hopefully today I’ll manage check off lots more things on my ‘to do’ list!! I think I might head out this afternoon for a change of scenery in the hope of it encouraging me to focus on my assignments….maybe a nice coffee shop with good wifi!!

Questions; do you have problems focusing on work/studying/assignments if your deadline isn’t in the near future? have you got any techniques to help you focus?

L x

Breakfast for one…

I’ve talked before about my love of the 1st meal of the day.  Some may think it’s a little self-indulgent to make what you might think of as ‘too much effort’, especially for one!  I can honestly say for me though, starting my day in this way has just become a habit and something I do without really thinking about it.

This morning was a particularly pleasant one, the sun actually was shining (for once), giving the impression it might actually feel warm outside…it was however, definitely deceiving as I found out when I went outside to put my rubbish in the bin!!…still pretty cold out there!! when will spring come?????  I thought it was the perfect opportunity to take a photo…

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My family think I’m hilarious because I get out every potential toast topping I have in the house and put it on the table.  The thing is though, I’m indecisive which means I often end up having 4 different toppings…one on each half!! My 2 top favourites being, nut butter  and butter with marmite…yum!!

They also think I’m crazy for having this little ‘breakfast routine’ at all.  Growing up, breakfast was something we would grab in a rush amongst the chaos of 5 people trying to get ready and out the house on time.  I regularly known to grab some kind of processed bar that I would eat on my way to school with my Mum shouting “thats not a breakfast!” after me as I ran out the door!!…how times have changed!

When James is here we love to make the most of a little ‘us time’ over breakfast.  We have been doing the long distance relationship thing for 6 months now and it’s pretty tough,  so when he is here, I like to make it special and we usually sit for hours…I always make him his favourite…boiled eggs.

Get this though…!! times are changing! this time is 2 weeks we will be in our new house!  I’m so excited to be making the move down to the other end of the country and being able to see my favourite man every day (and every breakfast!)….I really do need to start packing soon!!

This morning though, now my tummy is full..I’m off to get my sweat on at my Boxercise class.

Hope you’re weekend is off to a good start…

Questions: What’s your favourite toast topping? Do you think it’s important to make time for breakfast in the morning?

L x

Nutribox and Bloglovin

Good Morning!

Yesterday at work I was greeted by the postman with yet another box filled with delicious looking treats!!…the Nutribox I ordered using the 50% discount from Laura over at Keepinghealthygettingstylish…thanks Laura! Again I am not disappointed!

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This box is full of natural, healthy portable and convenient snacks, some of which are raw, including some raw cookies, which I think will be the 1st thing I try…they are calling my name!!

The concept reminds me of the graze boxes that are available in the UK which I’ve had a few times except there is definitely more variety included in this box…I’m looking forward to getting stuck in!

I’ve just discovered another way of keeping up to date on the blogs I love, if you would like to keep up to date and follow mine please click here :):

<a href=”http://www.bloglovin.com/blog/5320833/?claim=uv5rfek4rgn”>Follow my blog with Bloglovin</a>

 

Happy Friday!

L x