Monday, 30 March 2015

Adele’s Journey #5 | March Recap


I’m still not over the fact it’s 3 months into the year. Was it not January just last week?

However, for the first time this year I actually feel like I’m getting things done. I’ve rewritten my CV, applied for jobs, bought new clothes (not just for work) and got myself a good blogging schedule.

I feel calmer and more relaxed about, well life, and trust me this rarely happens!

I don’t know about anyone else but I don’t particularly enjoy turning a year older. Sure, I absolutely love birthdays and sharing them with the people I love. Please, just shower me with flowers.

For the first time, I think I’m ready to turn a year older, I feel like I’ve accomplished enough/a lot in my year of being 21 and heck, I’m ready to be 22. I’ve got a ridiculous amount planned starting with Centerparcs.

March has brought the beginning of Spring and seeing daffodils blooming through the grass!

I also bought my first vase and bunch of flowers on payday! It is the nicest feeling to have a bunch of flowers on my chest of drawers!

I’ll be back to tell you all about my birthday and Centerparcs in a couple of weeks.


Friday, 27 March 2015

A to Z of Spring


April (the best month duh)

Birthday (3rd April if you want to send presents…)



Easter Eggs (c’mon we love them)

Family Time

Green Grass


Ice Cream (chocolate obvs)

Journey (I’ll be doing lots of these)

Kingston (potentially the last Spring I’ll spend here so I’ll be making the most of it)

London meet ups

Markets (It’s so much better walking round them when it’s warm)

New Friends (you girls know who you are <3 )



Quest (for new challenges)

Rain (April showers and all that)

Sunshine (I hope)

Time (I have a whole week off eek)


Vases full of Flowers

Warm (I’m begging you England)

X Marks the Spot

Yummy Food (I’m cooking for my family for the first time at Easter)

Zoo (I’m going to go to the zoo again without fail)


Monday, 23 March 2015

Adele’s Journey #4 | Where I’ve Been


Hello! Over the past few weeks you will have seen that I’ve been posting a lot less. I will never apologise for this but life and work have just gotten in the way. It feels like I haven’t sat down in weeks and I’m just constantly on the go. Probably because I am.

Even for Mother’s Day, I was up at 7am to get back home to make my Mum breakfast. Adorable aren’t I?

It never feels like I really have a day off as I’m either doing something or I’ve worked till 12 the night before so I’m catching up on sleep which takes basically the whole day.

So that’s where I’ve been either at work or with my family and unfortunately there’s not really an in between.

I won’t lie, it’s a difficult situation to be in. I’ve got so many ideas going round in my head but no time to really make them happen which is a little bit disheartening. I’ll be honest, I’m really struggling. I put ridiculous amounts of pressure on myself to be the best that I can but it never seems to be the way.

There’s that good ol’ saying “Good things come to those who wait”. Well all I seem to have done is wait and it’s making me unhappy! Life is passing me by and it’s getting stressful. How long do you wait and essentially be led on before you need a new adventure?

I’m impatient at the best of times but I’m really losing patience now, it’s got to be my turn soon surely?

Ok, ok, rant over. You’ll be pleased to know I’m back for a couple of weeks before I have a break away (but I might blog at the same time!). I hope you haven’t missed me too much!


Wednesday, 18 March 2015

Gousto | Review

gousto review

I’m delighted to share with you a great company called Gousto*. You may have heard of them but they are still relatively new as they were founded in 2012. It is a service delivering recipe boxes to customer all over the UK. All you have to do is select 3 recipes from a range of choices, then Gousto measures the ingredients for you and sends it in a box. You are also given recipe cards with easy to follow instructions and pictures.

The great thing about their recipes is that there is always something for everyone. I van be particularly fussy at the best of times and I found meals I would enjoy.

I would say that this service is aimed at busy people, perhaps a couple who have little time to prepare healthy meals or a family with parents who have full time jobs but are conscious of the fact tat their children need nutritious meals.

The subscription starts from £3.30 a meal and vegetarians, don’t worry, there are plenty of options for you too. The box works around you and can be paused at any moment if you need a break or are going on holiday.

I got the special bloggers box, so the meals I received were:

  • Steak and Creamy Mash

  • Sweet and Sour Pork

  • Creamy Mustard Chicken

The day it arrived I made sweet and sour pork, mainly to get it out of the way because I didn’t know if I was going to enjoy it or not. I don’t really eat pork and I’ve never had sweet and sour before. Just omg. This was so good! I really enjoyed it, it probably helped that I was starving both times I ate it but I will definitely making it again with chicken. I mean it’s not all that bad for you when it’s homemade!

sweet and sour pork

Next I made the Steak and Creamy Mash. Again, mashed potato is not something that I will always (as in never) go for. It's just not something I personally enjoy. In the spirit of trying new things I made the potato and leek mash and with rare steak and honey glazed carrots, it was to die for. I enjoyed this meal just as much as the last!

steak and mash

The last meal that I cooked was the Creamy Mustard Chicken. Unfortunately, I did not enjoy this one as much as I had hoped. It comes with lentils which I still tried but I just didn't enjoy them which is a shame. That's my personal taste though!

chicken and lentils

I've given these Gousto recipe boxes a lot of thought. They are a great investment if you have limited time in the evenings to cook meals, the majority of their meals take less than 30 minutes and they are fresh and so enjoyable. You can pick the 3 meals you would like from a small ranged so you aren't stuck for choice. The boxes are usually £34.99 so for 6 meals I guess that's decent value, especially if you compare it to eating out. They are very flexible so you may want a box one week and not the next so you can put it on hold.

Being a relatively fussy eater I would mostly struggle with finding meals I wanted every week. I also couldn't justify £34.99 every week and extra for other meals!

What do you think of the Gousto Subscription?

*I was sent this box for review purposes only, as always all views are my own.

end note

Monday, 16 March 2015

Birthday Wish List


In less than 3 weeks I turn 22, like oh em gee. So it would seem only right to do a birthday wish list. (Hint: family anything off this list would be greatly appreciated)

iPhone 6


This may seem a lot but I've had an iPhone 4 for nearly 3 years, I'm literally dying for an iPhone 6. I've seen the camera and it's so much better! Plus you don't get any of the software updates on the 4 anymore. I'm behind the times, ok, and it pains me everyday.

A5 Filofax


I've had my current Filofax for 3 years and it hurts me to say that I think its almost had its time. It has served me well but I'd quite like to upgrade to a larger one to keep it classy and all that.

Daily Greatness Journal: A Practical Guide for Consciously Creating


I'm in complete amazement at what this is. I'm all about getting things down on paper and speaking your feelings. So I think for me, personally, this would be beneficial.

Mink Snakeskin Textured Panel Zip Front Shoulder Bag

new look bag

I do love a new bag, especially from New Look. All the bags I have are dark colours so I would love one that has pastel colours on it. Just to liven up my wardrobe a little bit.

Paperchase Raindrop Stationary


Raindrop list pad set of 2 / Raindrops magnetic clipboard, pad & pen / Raindrops A4 document wallets / Raindrops multi list book

I'm a huge fan of Paperchase. I got an email the other day from Paperchase and their new Raindrop range. The spring colours are so fresh, I would love to add these to my collection.

If all that fails, copious amounts of wine or a trip to New York City would do just fine. You know, whichever you prefer.

end note

Tuesday, 10 March 2015

An Evening In

As a student you definitely do not appreciate all of the spare time you have, until you get a full time job that is, even a lunch hour is sacred these days.

I appreciate my evenings a whole lot more and I just hope that I’m not too tired so that I can be relatively productive!

I normally spend my lunch hour brainstorming ideas and getting my thoughts on to paper or I write the first draft of my blog posts. It allows me to escape the thoughts of work and think about something completely different.

My evenings are spent relatively similar, just tucked up in bed instead! There’s normally something on TV so I have that on in the background or a new series on Netflix!

I’m not a huge fan of going out on a Friday or Saturday night, I had my fair share of that at University, plus I normally work on a Saturday. Instead I’ll be happy enough to chill out, light a candle, cook something nice and watch a bit of Saturday Night TV. And we all know Saturday Night TV is the best and can’t be beaten. I’d much rather save my money than waste a ridiculous amount on going out.

I might even make an evening extra special with a hot bath and a Lush bath bomb. I don’t think anything can beat that to be honest.

How do you spend your perfect evening in?

Friday, 6 March 2015

February Degustabox


Boy am I glad February is a short month because it’s that time again!

I’ll be honest from the start (I always am!), I was half disappointed with this box. This has been my worst box yet and I’m not sure how I feel about all of the items. However, this will not stop me trying them.

1. Whole Earth Peanut Butter - £3.19

The minute I read the description for this, I instantly thought of my mum. She loves all kinds of nut butters and this certainly wouldn’t be an exception. I, on the other hand, am most definitely not a fan. However, I’m going to see what I can dow with this, perhaps marinade some chicken in it or do some baking (probably both…). So this is actually packed with 3 types of seeds - Sunflower, Pumpkin and Flaxseed which gives a very unique taste.

2. Beet It - £1.85

I was very intrigued by this when I found it in the box and it would seem that this is an ideal snack for sports people. Beetroot bars contain c400mg of dietary nitrate and is used by over 150 universities worldwide for research into the benefits of lowering blood pressure and improving sports performance.

Now I don’t mean to mention my mum again (Hi Mum!) but she clearly enjoys healthy food and went through a phase last year of eating a lot (I mean A LOT) of beetroot and noticed her blood pressure lower, so I definitely think that beetroot is underrated…interesting fact for you.

3. Melba Thins - £1.39

Mmm, I love these. With literally anything - Mozzarella + tomatoes, parma ham, feta cheese. These are a winner for me. The packaging as well is so cute. I love the branding they have gone for. This is something I will be buying again, particularly for the price too.

4. Schwarz Flavour Shots - £1.40 each

These have been around for a while, as far as I’m aware, and I’ve been dying to try the so I am thrilled (that’s right thrilled) to have these! I’ve recently started enjoying paella so I can’t wait to try that one!

5. Lily O’Brien’s Cocoa Cookie Crunch - £2.60

Like oh em gee. These are de-lish-us (new favourite word there). These are from Ireland’s best-loved chocolatier who has just launched a new range of luxury snacking pouches. And luxury they are! So the cocoa cookie crunch is crunchy chocolate biscuit pieces smothered in milk chocolate. I can imagine these are heaven with a cup of tea. I know you’ve already abandoned what you’re doing to go buy some, it’s ok I don’t blame you!

6. American Muffin Company - £2.50

Is it bad that I’ve already devoured these? (Hides face). They were just too good! I got the mini chocolate chip muffins which were so yummy. Just to make myself feel better, they are gluten and wheat free. That makes it better right? The muffins are made by always using the finest ingredients such as high cocoa content chocolate chips and Sicilian lemon oil. BRB, going to buy more.

7. Penut Hottie - £3

Unfortunately, this is one I wasn’t over the moon about and it will probably end up being given to someone else. This is the world’s first peanut butter flavoured hot drink. Real American peanuts have been blended together with a special flavour and carefully selected ingredients to create a smooth, velvety indulgent instant hot drink - just ew.

8. Laimon Fresh - £1.99

This is a sparkling lemon, lime and mint flavoured soft drink using 100% natural ingredients. Sounds great right? This is right up my street as I love lemon and lime flavoured things anyway!

9. Jack Link’s - £1.39

Another one that I’m a bit wary about. This is a beef snack which is delicious, convenient and easy-to-eat. It is aimed at busy people looking for a healthier snack on the go. I can see the idea that they have gone for and the concept is great but I’ve tried beef jerky a number of times and I haven’t liked it. Nonetheless I’m going to give this one a go anyway.

Considering I was quite disappointed with the box, the total retail value adds up to £22.56 which is almost £10 over what I paid for the box at £12.99. Here’s hoping next months box will be better!

end note

Thursday, 5 March 2015

21 Things I’ve Learnt Since Turning 21


  1. Nothing is ever set in stone

  2. You still have most of your life ahead of you

  3. Family are your rock, they keep you grounded

  4. Food solves nothing and makes you fat

  5. Life is not, and will never be, perfect

  6. Starting a blog if the best thing I’ve ever done

  7. Writing is basically therapy

  8. Not everything in life is easy, but it is so rewarding when you succeed

  9. Living in London is really not all it’s made out to be

  10. When you need a job, you have to take whatever you can get

  11. Sleep is hard to come by when you have a full time job

  12. You quickly eliminate jobs you don’t want a career in

  13. Having a car is quite literally a blessing

  14. You spend all of your spare time doing things you love, absolutely no more time wasting

  15. University is so far from your expectations

  16. Studying is actually a bitch

  17. Exercise makes you feel better, just get on and do it

  18. Life’s what you make it

  19. I want to write for a living

  20. You make your own fate and destiny

  21. I don’t know about you but I’m (almost) feeling 22

end note

Wednesday, 4 March 2015

Coping | Dealing with Anxiety


I’ve been dealing with anxiety for over 6 years now. Yeah, 6 years, a long time right! It’s been on hell of a journey and it’s likely to go on for a while. It’ll be one of those things that will be buried and every now and again it will surface its ugly head.

It started out with panic attacks when I war 15, I was young and honestly had no idea what was going on. I found it difficult to even sit in an assembly for 20 minutes and it was even worse trying to sit through lessons and knowing I couldn’t leave. I had no escape route.

It felt like it was taking over my lie and I was a nervous wreck. It got to the point where I would get panic attacks at the thought of even going to school. I had absolutely no idea how to deal with it.

Only in the past couple of years has it started to ease off. Basically since I started taking antidepressants. It’s made such a huge difference but in no way am I saying that this is a solution to my problems because it absolutely isn’t. This is a temporary fix while I deal with the real issues then I will gradually take myself off of it.

University wasn’t any easier, the panic attacks eased and depressions et in, so I seemed the Doctors help and started counselling. But that’s a whole other story.

If you’ve ever had a panic attack you can sympathise. If you haven’t, you are lucky, I wouldn’t wish it on anyone. It’s not a pleasant thing to go through.

end note

Tuesday, 3 March 2015

BBC Good Food Eat Well Show


What is your take on healthy eating and lifestyle?

A question asked to all chefs and speakers on Sunday. Now I want to know what you think - what is your take on that question?

What a fantastic day! I attended the Eat Well Show on Sunday 1st March and the day was so great. I never doubted that for a second and any time I’ve been to a BBC Good Food Show I’ve had a great day.


This is the first time they've done the Eat Well Show and while it was much smaller than the Good Food Show, it was a great atmosphere.

While I would normally go to a food show to find new brands and discover new foods. I was more interested in seeing Lorraine Pascale and Hemsley + Hemsley, but I still discovered more brands along the way.

For the first time in my life I was utterly starstruck. We first watched Lorraine Pascale and we literally got there just in time. I was in awe. She let out that she was 42 but in no way did she look it. I wish that I had bought my recipe book for her to sign but I forgot.


Next we had a little wander around checking out all of the healthy products that all the stands had to offer. I noticed a lot of brands that I’ve already worked with and looked into, so it was kind of reassuring that I was going in the right direction! We also got some lunch but mine was not in the slightest bit enjoyable and I ended up eating half of my mums chocolate Guinness cake - amazing if you’re wondering.

For me the highlight had to be Hemsley + Hemsley. They were just so perfect! They did an inspiring demo and their words were amazing. I didn’t realise all of the ingredients you can use that are actually healthy. I also can’t wait to make homemade pot noodles for lunches. Don’t worry their healthy! I came away feeling absolutely inspired and I bought their book straight away to get signed. They were so lovely! I was shaking though, I was that starstruck, cringe!


The great thing about their recipes and the way they were talking about food was that i was using ingredients that are easy to get hold of and it’s all cost effective.

I personally find it quite difficult to find recipes that have “normal” ingredients. i.e. the ones that you can get in supermarkets and don’t cost £5 a pop. They appreciate that and I admire them more for that!

I’ve already tabbed every other recipe in their book and there’s a lot of useful information that I’m going to work my way through. Don’t worry, of course I’ll be sharing it with you!


I had a really great day and I love going to events like this with my mum as she appreciates the food as much as I do. Plus I can fangirl at the chefs and not feel embarrassed!

Have you ever been to a BBC Good Food Show?

end note

Monday, 2 March 2015

Adele’s Journey #3 | Being Self Conscious


Can you believe it’s March already? I certainly can’t. Unfortunately, any weight I lost, I’ve put back on again by putting myself under a lot of stress.

Therefore, I’m writing myself a list of rules to go by. I can’t carry on the way I a, and even though I’m fitting into size 18’s at work, I still dread the thought of having to try clothes on.

How can anyone even be happy like this?

I’m going to Centerparcs in June with @LDNmeetup for #bloggersinvadecenterparcs. Now anyone that knows me will know how much I love Centerparcs. But the last thing I want to do is go along and be so self conscious of the way I look and not take part in things like swimming which would quite frankly ruin the event and weekend for me.

I’m also going to a festival with my family and friends and I want to be able to buy new clothes and look and feel good!

Plus every time I write posts like this I’m on the verge of crying. I want to write the positive posts where I’ve lost weight and I’m happy!


So I’m going to do that for me! I’m well aware I make excuses and I’m yet to lost weight but I hope that it doesn’t stop you reading. I will get there and your support is invaluable!

end note
© Adele Louise Smith | All rights reserved.
Blogger Template Developed by pipdig