Wow it has been a busy month. A lot of work in my day job and doing freelance writing as well as the blog. Family birthdays, other commitments and well just general life taking over every waking hour. This has meant I haven’t had an awful lot of down time, I’m not complaining as I enjoy the challenges of my work but it is a little tiring. I have had a few short periods of forced relaxation when I felt like I was just about to burn out and I’m definitely planning a little more rest next month. More time spent curled up with a blanket and a book would be just perfect.
I almost didn’t post this today as I didn’t really have the time to write it up but a lot of you have said how much you enjoy reading my monthly updates. I also like to to have them there to read back on at some time so I can remember all that I have been up to. Let’s start off with:
What Have I Been Watching?
I started watching Designated Survivor at the beginning of the month and very quickly became addicted. There were 15 episodes on Netflix when I began and a few very late nights got me up to speed with the rest of the world and now like everyone else I am waiting each Thursday for the new episode. I always make sure that come 9/10pm on a Thursday night I switch myself off from work and immerse myself in the world of American politics, it is fascinating. Yes it can be cheesy in parts and some of the lines are predictable but I love it. Still on Netflix I have watched the latest Louis CK show, oh he is really not one for the easily offended but I do find him funny.
I haven’t managed to watch any new films this month and I haven’t had a cinema trip which I have really missed. I have however watched one or two old films, mainly romantic comedies which are easy to watch on my tablet while I catch up on tasks which don’t require my full attention such as scheduling blog content for social promotion or finding good content to share on Facebook. Most recently it was Made Of Honour which is a pretty terrible film however it has two of my favourite actors from Greys Anatomy in it ( Patrick Dempsey and Kevin McKidd ) so I managed to give it a second viewing.
And that is it for the TV and Movies for this month. Pretty poor show right? I promise to try harder next month.
What Have I Been Reading?
I have not made enough time to read this month. In fact most of my reading has been other food websites and blogs. For research, inspiration or just to support my fellow bloggers. I have also been reading lots of tutorials for social media tips and on growing your own business. I feel like I have spent some quality time on educating myself this month which is always important. For pleasure I have read The Simple Things magazine and I am still enjoying Magnificent Mess by Topher Kearby, I find there is always something in his book which relates to how I am feeling or have felt. He is clever in the way he writes and you can always tell that it is from the heart. I would definitely recommend picking up one of his books on Amazon.
What Have I Been Listening To?
Sunny weather makes me regress to my teenage years of being carefree and singing along at the beach with my friends. I have been listening to Blink 182 and lately I have had What’s My Age Again? playing over and over..rather appropriately I guess as I am definitely feeling younger than I have in years. Not sure if it’s to do with being healthier and happier with how I look or finally feeling like I am on the road to achieving what I want in terms of a career but I feel like life is most definitely there for the taking. Kind of like I felt aged 17 when the world was my oyster, I’ve realised it still is. Still going back in time a bit I have been enjoying All Saints ready for when I watch them at Camp Bestival and YES I am still obsessing over the new Ed Sheeran album and John Legend. Finally I discovered an amazing band called Home Free on YouTube so that is what I listen to while I work, you really should listen to their cover of Ring Of Fire – it is goosebump inducing.
What Have I Been Eating?
Increasing my exercise routine means I am eating more and definitely more carbs, not deliberately but my body seems to crave them on the days post workout. Most specifically potatoes. I am all about making potatoes taste amazing. From fondant potatoes to stuffed potatoes or the ultimate creamy mash. Lots of spud recipes coming up.
I’ve enjoyed some great food whilst out and about. I had great tapas at Brewstone in Swansea for my sisters birthday meal and I ate the best doughnuts EVER from Crosstown Doughnuts in London..Salted Caramel and Banana Creme!!!
What Products Have I Been Loving?
I was sent some Rock Rose Gin to try and it is exquisite. Just the right level of floral flavour so as to stimulate the senses without being too fragrant.
I am still in love with Hair Elasticiser, I currently use a tropical version that I bought online from Philip Kingsley and my hair feels super soft and smells awesome to boot.
I tried this Bourbon and Blueberry Cider from Blind Pig on a recent night out and oh my word it is awesome. If you see it, buy it.
I was sent this Extra Virgin Olive Oil from Orodeal and it is just delicious. I always recommend you buy the best quality oils as it makes such an incredible difference to the flavour.
And ahh I am all about the Frappes right now.
What Else Has Been Happening?
I have been in London quite a lot lately for blog events. I started off the month with Heinz at the 50 years celebration of the Beanz Meanz Heinz Slogan and the launch of their limited edition tins, the event was at Selfridges and it was fun and I of course picked up one of the 50 tins signed by the creator of the slogan. Heinz have a pop up in Selfridges at the moment where you can get your beans fix.
Later that day I spent time with Magnum at the launch of their new ice cream tubs, ice cream with a layer of thick chocolate all around and on top. BLISS.
Then I was back a few weeks later for a really fun event with Tefal to launch their new Slimmers Secret campaign for the Actifry, the event was hosted by Frankie Essex ( Of TOWIE fame ). We all got involved creating dishes and then we sat down to a sumptuous lunch together. Look out for my full post about that event along with a review of the new Actifry.
Finally I went to an event with Air New Zealand earlier this week in Soho. It was an incredible experience which I won’t go into too much detail about as a full post will be coming up next week telling you all about it. But I will say I ate well, tried out the on board bed options and took home 16 doughnuts. FUN.
I have made sure that when I haven’t been working at home or in the office this month I have spent time focused on family and friends. I think I am at a time when I am realising just how important the people in my life are and they occasionally need me to focus solely on them. It isn’t easy to do when you do this kind of job as there is always the feeling that you should be online and promoting yourself and your brand but it is necessary. I have had afternoons spent switched off at the beach exploring rock pools and days spent at the theme park or just talking and being there..in the moment. Especially when it comes to the girls, sometimes they really need my FULL attention. They know how hard I work and I hope they appreciate it when they get older but I still want that kind of relationship with them which won’t continue to grow without the time spent on it.
I have been working on lots of background blog stuff this past few weeks which may not be apparent yet but look out you will see soon. I have four new recipes coming up in the first two weeks of May as well as collaborations with a few brands you will have heard of. I am doing more and more in terms of freelance writing and you can see another piece of work I did for The Daily Meal here. I am off to Spain on a press trip in 2 weeks then off to Ireland for a food and literature festival and before that this weekend I am in London for a conference. There is also the chance I will be off on visits to some really cool destinations later this Summer including Aarhus, Germany and America. Finally my wanderlust is being satisfied.