I’m back! Leibster Awards

Liebster-Award-RulesHello everyone! I would like to firstly apologise for my lack of posts. I have been studying hard for my exams, but I can happily say that they are now finished and I can start enjoying my summer. I was feeling a little demotivated regarding this blog so I want to say a massive thank you to the lovely Rosie from Red Lipstick Rosie   for nominating me for a Liebster Award! It’s given me a push to start writing again! So referring to the rules above below are my 11 questions from Rosie:

  1. If you were a Disney Princess, which one would you be?

I have always been a total Aladdin nerd, it was my favourite Disney movie growing up so I would totally be Jasmine! Plus she has her pet tiger….. Who doesn’t want a pet tiger!

  1. What is your dream job/career?

I previously trained in Musical Theatre/Dance but haven’t danced in a few years. Every time I go and watch a performance I end up feeling quite sad that I no longer practise the arts! So in the back of my mind it’s still my dream, who know maybe one day I will get back into it! I’ve also always wanted to be a Pro Surfer…. But I took lessons in Australia and i’m terrible, plus I’m scared of deep water so that will never happen…..

  1. What is your best healthy living tip/advice?

Count colours not calories! I live by this moto! Fill your meals with colourful fruit and veg! Also find one reason to smile each day!

  1. What is your favourite TV show?

At the moment it’s got to be Game of Thrones!!

  1. What is your dream holiday?

I have always wanted to go to the Caribbean and also Hawaii

  1. Who is the biggest inspiration in your life?

My parents, 100%! They are my best friends

  1. What’s the best piece of advice anyone has given you?

Stop worrying, what will be will be. Everything will fall into place if/when it’s meant to.

  1. If you could only buy clothes from one shop for the rest of your life, which one would it be?

That’s tough as I shop in different stores for different things…. Possibly Zara! Depends on my financial status

  1. What song always puts you in a good mood?

Hmmmm this is hard I have been staring at the screen pondering this for a while! Justin Timberlakes new song ‘Can’t stop the feeling’ is so cheerful!!

  1. If you could choose to meet anyone in the world (alive or dead), who would it be?

Judy Garland, just so she can sing ‘somewhere over the rainbow’ to me.

  1. What is your favourite lipstick?

Mac in shade ‘Velvet Teddy’

 

Okay to 11 random facts about moi:

  1. I used to be blonde
  2. I auditioned for the role of Lavender Brown in Harry Potter
  3. I am fascinated by natural disasters/weather/geology, but was never quite smart enough to pursue a career in the field.
  4. I am allergic to strawberries
  5. My aim in life is to own a husky and call her Penelope
  6. My favourite films are the Lord of the Rings trilogies.
  7. I am a quarter African (Ghana) and a quarter Brazilian
  8. I once played Elphaba from Wicked in college and painted myself green just for the role. So technically I can sing a little bit but I personally think I’m horrendous.
  9. I am realising I am super boring….. ummm…. my favourite animal is the Dolphin…. Completely in love with them
  10. I have never been able to say the word ‘specific’, it comes out all scrambled.
  11. I love listening to audio books to relax. It’s so therapeutic

 

My nominees are:

Progress Pure

Love Travelling

Life in Lipstick

Formula for Fabulous

Earth Pilgrim

My 11 questions are:

  1. What is your number one holiday destination?
  2. What is the best piece of advice you have ever been given?
  3. Who inspires you the most and why?
  4. What is your favourite food?
  5. If you could have any superpower what would it be?
  6. Favourite book?
  7. If you could meet anyone dead or alive who would it be?
  8. Once you have met said person and you only had one question for them, what would it be?
  9. Trapped on a desert island, you are only allowed 3 things to have with you. What are they?
  10. If you could live your life as anyone for a day, who would it be?
  11. Favourite childhood memory?

 

Thank you again to Rosie for the nomination! I am off to Barcelona next week so stay tuned for a post about this! Thanks for reading xox

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Mini Review – Beyonce’s IVY PARK ‘athleisure’ line

 

Quick little post all about the launch of a new exciting brand for women, co-designed by one of my favourite women Beyonce (anyone that knows me personally will know how much I love her…. )

So Ivy Park is a collaboration between Bey herself and Sir Phillip Green (owner of Arcadia group). It is a permanent addition to Topshop stores worldwide  (also in JD Sports and Net-a-Porter in the UK) and will be selling garments made for the gym, dance and/or leisure. The style of ‘athleisure’ is fast becoming the most popular type of clothing worn by 15-35’s. I noticed it first when I was in Australia, all the girls were wearing gym clothes as opposed to other garments. I love it…. Thinking about what to wear everyday really stress’s me out and I really value comfort! Living in London, you can be more expressive with your fashion choices and I absolutely love it! But I have also found myself walking absolutely everywhere, which in heeled boots can be a nuisance. Sadly I also reckon most of us cannot afford to dress how we would really like…. Anyway I went off topic there…

I was lucky enough to be an ambassador of the brand at the pre-launch last week at the flagship Topshop store, Oxford Circus.

(My computer keeps changing this to Toyshop… dream job right there working in a Toyshop….) So Ivy Park is a play on words, collaborating the word ‘Ivy’ (Beyonces daughters second name, it is also the roman numerals for the number 4 which is a number with close personal ties for her.) and ‘Park’ (comes from Parkwood, a park in which she used to run with her Dad as a child and a place that brings her peace and quiet). The slogan ‘Where is your park?’ simply means where is that place that relaxes you mentally and arouses good thoughts. Mine is anywhere by the ocean! Where is yours?

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Classic case of ‘flat arm’, ‘dodgy side profile’ and a strange look of concern on my face at the pre-launch event. Taken from the Ivy Park Official Facebook page.

Prices range from around £15-£160 with many items being signature pieces and multifunctional. I treated myself to a few! Couldn’t resist. I am really happy with the quality of the garments, all are very breathable and well made. The leggings come in a range of styles with 3 waist heights and different leg lengths, they are also not a bad price when compared with brands such as Nike, Sweaty Betty and Lulumon. I would, however, like to see more colours available as I love bright exercise clothing.

Sizes range from an XXS to XL, closer to the sizing found in America. XXS being a UK 6. The sports bras are all medium support, which I worried about when running! But I was really surprised, I bought the logo bra (below) and it was really comfy when I went running, with little bounce occuring. I wouldn’t be so sure for ladies with a bigger chest, I think a higher level of support would be more comfortable. I am told this will be launching later on in the year. This is a brand that I feel has had a great response and is sure to grow! Below are a few of my favourite pieces from the collection:

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Logo Bra £22

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This body suit doubles up as swimwear with an auto-locking zip. I absolutely love it. But it was a little out of my price range at £105

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Crop tee, £20. I love this cobalt blue colour. This top would be great in summer, really sporty with the trademark ’04’ on the back.

Thank you for reading! Any questions or comments please pop them below 🙂 xox

Monday Motivation – My new regime + study stress busters

Apologies for the decline in posts over the past couple of weeks. Exam season has begun, and so my days are spent revising and slowly going insane…. But it’s worth it…. Right?

So to tie in with the torture that is revision I choose to use this time as a chance to really detoxify my body. So for 7 weeks I have banned myself from refined sugar, alcohol and diary products (apart from the odd cup of tea at friends). I am on week 3 now and I can honestly say I feel so much better. I have increased my gym workouts and this, combined with lots of detoxifying juices, has given me a great mental and physical boost. It’s nice to know that my body is getting the nutrients it needs, I no longer feel bloated and lethargic like I used to. It took me about 4 days to stop craving sweet foods; I had been indulging in one too many biscuits with my tea and kept having puddings with my dinners (which was incredible for my taste buds and that’s about it).  I began this programme with a 3 day juice cleanse which I spoke about in my previous post. I don’t really miss (refined) sugar anymore either as I know how damaging it is for the body (learning extensively about cell biology and chemistry has also put into perspective the damage refined sugar has on our internal systems). I have also seriously cut down on meat and carbs (the bread/pasta kind). Instead replacing  them with high levels of fruit and vegetables. I have been having oats as my primary grain energy source. A lot of people question me about high fruit diets ‘fruit is full of sugar right? Why not just have chocolate?’ I could talk all day about how amazing high fruit diets are when done right, checkout ‘Freelee the Banana Girl’ and ‘Kalel’ online, they are quite opinionated YouTubers (they can get a little preachy…) but good if you want to learn more about it. To sum it up our cells require Glucose to survive, fruit is full of this natural sugar along with countless vitamins, enzymes and minerals. If you do have any questions I am always more than happy to answer them! Just comment below or email me @ joelyfranklin@gmail.com

Quick insight into a smoothie I love to have post workout. Beetroot Blend!

  • Whole raw beetroot
  • 3cm chunk of raw ginger
  • half a lime (the juice)
  • half an avocado (or quarter if it’s a large one)
  • 4cm chunk of cucumber
  • handful of grapes
  • banana
  • baby spinach
  • and I added some chia seeds and linseeds (optional)

I very rarely use protein powders. Unless you are a heavy weight lifting champion it’s not really necessary, we get plenty in our diets when eating well. If I do need some extra ‘oomph’ I will use Hemp or Pea Protein. Most of the cheaper Whey proteins are full of additives and sweeteners, I also never EVER use ‘pre-workout’ powders. They are super toxic for the liver and kidneys, things like that are only helpful to use before, say, running a marathon or participating in a sport where your body will metabolise it quickly and efficiently. I advise to find natural alternatives, click HERE for some great options of mixes that can be used both pre/post workout. This is just my personal opinion and this is all based on my experiences and may differ for others. I, like everyone else, am still learning! I am no where near where I want to be physically but I am improving and that is all that matters. Health and happiness comes from within as they say! (cheesy I know).

So another topic I want to talk about today is stress. (Sick Toxic Revolting Energy Sucking Sensations… this is my own depiction of the thing). I have some really important exams coming up and if I let myself get too wound up in my thoughts I freak out and everything falls apart. Here are my top 5 tips to help release stress  when studying and to stay focused:

  1. Plan ahead. Make a revision schedule making sure you cover all the elements of the subject you need with frequent ‘check points’ in which you go over what you have done thus far.
  2. Remember it’s okay to take a day off. Don’t punish yourself if you wake up one morning and just cannot cope with revising (obviously this is most days and we have to get on with it but it does built up). Take a day off, go somewhere new or see your friends. You will feel much better the following day when you need to carry on.
  3. Keep hydrated. Keep a glass of water close by, sitting at a computer or desk for hours we can forget to drink water and can get very dehydrated without knowing. This in turn hinders our ability to retain the things we are trying to remember.
  4. Do something active each day. Try to get outside every day, or at least do something to get your heart rate up. Even 20 minutes of Yoga will work wonders for your concentration and sleep quality. I have taken up spinning again which has been great!
  5. Don’t always study alone. Tag up with friends and help each other. Each take a subject and teach it to the other person to test your knowledge. Sometimes just having company can really help motivate you. We are not in this alone 🙂

I hope this post has been helpful and enjoyable. Thank you for reading! xox

 

 

Motivational Mondays, Detox!

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So today I was feeling very motivated to really cleanse my body and mind. I’ve really improved my eating habits since the Easter holiday but now is time to kick it up a notch! I suffer from hay fever so todays juice and exercises are a fantastic way to help with the symptoms naturally.

So I have been inspired by Jason Vales 5 day juice cleanse with my juice today.

http://www.jasonvalesbigjuicechallenge.com  << for more information on his 5 day cleanse.

I began my day with a big mug of hot water, fresh ginger and lemon juice. Ginger is a fantastic natural anti histamine and anti inflammatory, great if you are feeling a little run down. This is my go to drink when I am feeling a little low. This followed by a food shop for some lovely fresh fruits and veggies to make my smoothies for the next few days. I do not own a juicer, I find them expensive and messy! I also find that a lot of the produce is wasted, I like to use the entire fruit/vegetable! Most of the nutrient content is found in the skin or just below it so it’s important not to peel too deeply. Or just add in the skin when you can. I use a Nutri Ninja Bullet blender, it’s the best thing I have ever owned. They call them ‘nutrition extractors’ due to the way the blend. Everything is essentially liquidised in a matter of seconds, freeing up all the essential vitamins, fibre and minerals stored in the produce.

http://www.qvcuk.com/qvc.product.804605.html?sc=Froogle&ref=fgl&source=froogle&cm_mmc=PPCSHOPPING-_-Google-_-Shopping-_-Fashion&utm_source=google&utm_medium=base&utm_campaign=base&gclid=Cj0KEQjwoYi4BRDF_PHHu6rI7NMBEiQAKZ-JuBK5CIcM7yePTMuicUX3ClHDHhJW6hR0_SIXEVTS5uEaAmPE8P8HAQ << This is the one I own, it’s the most powerful on the market (I think… ) and fantastic value for money. The 1000 Watt blender literally pulverises everything into a liquid in about 5 seconds, and similar to a Nutri Bullet (these aren’t as powerful and have a lower voltage) you can drink straight from the cup you blend in. 

Todays smoothie comprises of:

  • 2cm chuck of fresh ginger (peeled and chopped, if you don’t like ginger you can adjust this)
  • 3cm chuck of cucumber (peeled)
  • small handful of blueberries
  • large handful of baby spinach
  • 1 gala apple
  • half a lime (the juice)
  • ice
  • half an avocado

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This is a tweak on Jasons ‘Turbo with a Kick’ Juice. It makes just over a pint of smoothie and I drink this slowly through out the day alongside lots of water and fruit teas. I have also been having dates as a snack due to the fact I did some exercise today. So these have provided me with some extra energy. Sometimes I choose not to exercise when doing a cleanse like this as I don’t have as much energy as I usually would but today I wanted to push myself and sweat out some toxins to. Below are some YouTube videos showing something similar to my workout to give you an idea. I did cardio body weight work and some yoga (I do not do weight training when cleansing).

So first up (after hoovering and cleaning my room which I used as my warm up) I did about half an hour of cardio internal training, I kept it fairly low intensity but wanted to get myself moving and sweaty. Body Project on YouTube offer great workouts if you don’t attend a gym.

I followed with a quick glute and thigh workout that I got from Fitness Blender:

Lastly as part of my routine I did some Yoga (this I have been doing every day). Yoga with Adriene on YouTube is my absolute favourite. This is the routine I did today:

So overall I spent about an hour moving my body, I followed this with the rest of my smoothie. (I made extra so I have had about 2 pints of smoothie so far). Be careful not to drink it too fast and also do not exercise straight after as it can make you feel a bit sick.

I am feeling energised, motivated and ready to spend the rest of the day revising for my exams (yawn). I hope this post was helpful, any questions please pop them below!

Happy Monday! Thank you for reading xox

Undercover Tourist, Thames River Cruise

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Quick review of the Thames River Cruise I did with a friend from Embankment to Greenwich this afternoon! Seeing as I live in London, it’s surprising how much of it I haven’t seen so this, plus the glorious sunshine, was the perfect way to sight see.

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During this 40 minute trip you do manage to see a lot of historical landmarks! Along with Canary Warf, Docklands and the famous HMS Belfast! I highly recommend if you aren’t in London long but want to see all the famous spots! Plus it’s lovely and relaxing! Even if the weather isn’t up to scratch all the boats have indoor seating areas along with a little cafe. It worked out cheaper for us to get the boat trip with running commentary about landmarks we passed, these include the Globe Theatre, St Pauls Cathedral, London Bridge and the Tower of London. I did have a little video… But I have yet to learn how to use HTML coding to upload mp4 files….. One day I will discover my hidden technical genius!  Historically I did learn a few fun facts that I will be able to pull out when talking to people, such as the ‘Traitors Gate’ by the Tower London. I haven’t lived in London my entire life so I’m not fully equipped with local history but it was great fun discovering all these things.

Greenwich is lovely! It’s like a small, cute little English town but still part of London. I highly recommend if you are visiting. There are lots of independent shops and an indoor/outdoor market. I imagine in the summer months it will be one of my favourite spots to visit.

Short post today! But wanted to share. Thanks for reading xoxo

 

IV Drip Therapy, REVIV Experience Review

‘REVIV is the leading global provider of wellness treatments with IV Infusions and Booster Shots’.

Today I was lucky enough to pop into their Knightsbridge clinic to take a look around and try a couple of the treatments. Due to laws clinics such as Reviv are limited to what they can publicly advertise and so social media is their outlet with a lot of celebrity figures endorsing the treatments. What initially got my attention was the way in which it was being portrayed as a treatment to use just when you’re hungover, as though it justified getting incredibly drunk and just using this to recover. It made me a little mad as it just seemed to be another way to separate ‘Celebs’ from everyone else (since opening in 2014 they have only had 4 clients coming in due to being hungover I have since discovered). Reviv were lovely enough to get in touch with me to let me try out the experience for myself!

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revive.com 

Initially I was quite apprehensive, I’ve never been admitted to hospital nor had an IV drip let alone elected to have one. I was totally surprised, there was no ‘sterile white hospital’ vibe. The atmosphere was totally chilled and friendly, almost spa like! It was fun just chatting to the girls and having a laugh. Located in a quiet and peaceful building Reviv is a bit of a hidden gem if you crave peace within the chaos.

All staff are trained by Reviv and go through monthly training workshops so you can be assured you are under the best professional care. All products are created and tested by Reviv’s own Pharmacologists/Doctors and the testing is extensive. All measurements of vitamins, amino acids etc are considered and work well together to form the perfect balance. This is what sets it apart from your average ‘multivitamin’ supplement. Some micronutrients slow down the uptake of other micronutrients, essentially they cancel each other out. With Reviv’s solutions this has been carefully considered. This form of intake goes immediately into the blood stream and so all content is available for the body to use, in comparison daily tablets take much longer to be absorbed, they usually need food to assist in this process and a lot of the content is destroyed in the stomach before taken into the cells. The Reviv website which is listed above has a comprehensive analysis of the treatments under the ‘Clinical Science’ tab. I chose to try out the ‘Megaboost Wellness Infusion’ this one being describes as aiding:

– Hydration
– Replenishes Essential Minerals & Vitamins
– Boosts Immune System
– Delivers An Energy Boost
– Detoxifies The Body
– Cleanses Vitals Organs

Containing vitamin B12, Magnesium, Electrolytes plus more. For a comprehensive list of the other infusions please visit their website.

Having the drip inserted wasn’t nearly as terrifying as I imagined, a little uncomfortable for about 5 seconds but a local anaesthetic was popped on the skin first so that kicked in quickly. I didn’t feel anything when I was on the drip initially, just very relaxed. I could of easily had a snooze! Near the end of the treatment I started to feel a little cold and had a bit of a ‘buzz’ I was told this was the magnesium. It lasted only for about 5/10 minutes. It was a little unnerving but I was made to feel comfortable and told it was totally normal. It was actually a fun feeling (if that even makes sense….), nice to know the treatment was actually having an effect and it wasn’t just a bag of saline!

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Info on the wall at the clinic

Next up was the SlimBoost booster shot. Shown to:

– Detoxifies the Body
– Augments Red Blood Cell Production
– Helps Regulate Sleep, Mood and Appetite Cycles
– Boosts Immune System
– Enhances Metabolism To Promote Natural Weight Loss

This was inserted in the buttock (love this word….) and was just a quick injection. I didn’t even feel this, a little sting when the solution was inserted due to its thick concentrated consistency but nothing of note. This shot is not designed for weight loss I would like to note. It has been shown to assist due to the content speeding up the metabolism so when combined with exercise and a nutrient dense diet this is a great add on. I would recommend this over any ‘Teatox’ as this does not upset the digestion in any way.

Some extra pointers that interested me, the UltraReviv infusion has been used by a lot of post chemotherapy patients to aid in recovery due to the high amounts of Glutathione (aids in cellular protection) which I think is fantastic. The staff have also been kind enough to research into if this treatment can help with other health issues not previously considered, (other infusions contain anti-inflammatories and antihistamines). They genuinely care about their clientele.

Okay to let’s talk budget, infusions start from £99 (for the Hydration infusion) in the UK with the ‘Royal Flush’ being the most pricey (up to £300). The booster shots are a cheaper and less time consuming alternative. The infusions take around half an hour 30 be fully administered. The clinic also offers 30% off every Wednesday so make sure to book on those days to reap the rewards! I am a student and so financially this isn’t a commitment I can make continuously but I have no negative views towards the treatments and it’s left me feeling but best I have felt all winter! Perfect way to start the Spring season.

An hour post treatment I felt lovely, very hydrated!! I don’t drink enough water in general so to feel properly hydrated is total bliss. Now I’m not saying use this instead of drinking water, this is just for comparison, it will motivate me to take in more fluids from now on and  to take care of myself a little better. Water is vital for all the biological processes and chemical reactions happening in our bodies and without enough we simply cannot function successfully. I need to remember this, practise what you preach Joely….

No pain post treatment either, sometimes I get a bit achy post injection but I have no discomfort which is lovely. Feeling very relaxed and at ease, so I’m taking advantage of this and going to get in a good workout at the gym and some exam preparation! I will hopefully be visiting their Las Vegas clinic this summer so I will make sure I keep you all updated on that trip.

I hope this has been a beneficial post and if you have any questions please pop them in the comments box or email me directly at joelyfranklin@gmail.com

Thanks for reading xox

Beauty Haul. First Impressions, Kylie Cosmetics

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Quick review/ first impressions post for you guys. I was so lucky to finally get my hands on a couple of the Kylie Cosmetics lip kits as they sell out within hours online. It was a struggle choosing which colours to go for, but as I was skeptical I didn’t want to buy the whole lot!

Each kit is $29, approximately £20 depending on the conversation rates. I chose to try out Posie (the darker pink tone) and KoKo which looked more neutral and great for day use. I am also very happy to say that these products are 100% Vegan and not tested on animals which is fantastic!! (There is one shade that is not vegan, visit kyliecosmetics.com for more details).

First impression… The product smells like a sweet shop which was slightly unnerving! It was a little over powering but did make the product nicer to use as some can smell very plastic like. Each shade comes with a matching lip liner, and the liquids are matte not glossy which I love.

I have to say the lip liners themselves were nothing special, the liner that came with Koko did nothing for my natural lip colour, I could barely notice it, it seems to blend very quickly. The pigments aren’t very vibrant and so I purely just used them as a frame for the liquid. On the other hand the liquid itself is great, very easy to apply and dries well. You don’t get the flaky, cracked effect that happens with some matte liquids (although make sure your lips are moisturised before using to avoid product build up). I am new to using lip products daily but really loved these colours! Perfect for enhancing a daily look or you can build up the colour for an evening look. Below is a quick glance at my initial application (please ignore the drifting hair, it has been a super long day!).

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I applied the product before a long shift at work and the product stayed in place for about 3 hours before re-application was required. It did get a little bit dry and built up in the corners but I can imagine if you aren’t stuck under hot air conditioning it would last longer. When applied over the top of my Mac lipstick (shade Velvet Teddy), Koko lasted all day and it created a lovely deep neutral pink colour!

Overall I really love these products, I will be attempting to get my hands on a few more shades over the summer when I visit the states. Although make up is not my speciality I will be keeping you all up to date with nice products I find! Please comment below with any questions or queries!

Hope you all had a wonderful Easter (for those who celebrate) xoxo

Wishing you a beautiful International Womens Day

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Take a moment today to really appreciate all the women (and men) in your life. Also remember to appreciate yourself, embrace your individuality! You are all amazing and it is okay to feel so.

One quote that has stuck with me is ‘Never Say Never’, make your dreams your goals and do a little something every day to work towards it. There are so many things that I have done that 15 year old me wouldn’t believe. Nothing is out of reach, you just have to build your own steps. You are you, and that is all you need to be. Social media continues to grow in aggression and power, let’s use this power not for hate but for uplifting others. Support others, do something nice for a friend this week; just because you can. I bought my friend a pretty flowering plant (or a love fern for any one who has seen How to Loose A Guy in 10 Days), and although it meant us both getting lost in the supermarket and a lot of confusion while I attempted to make this purchase unknown, it was totally worth it.

Today I am thankful for my amazing mum for being my best friend, my role model and the strongest woman I know. My Nana, who although is not with me any more, holds a big chunk of my heart. My beautiful sister, for your courage and passion, and for always being there for me and my incredible Aunt who continues to fight for her passions and for supporting me and showing me that anything really is possible. Finally my girlfriends, who without, I would have gone crazy a long time ago. You all know who you are.

Who are you thankful for? Make sure you let them know, not just today, but always. xox

Bored in London? Go undercover Tourist

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So this week I have had some extra time to myself and there are a few things in London I haven’t seen before or haven’t seen in a long time. So I took advantage of the sunshine and decided to do my favourite thing…. Which is to explore and wander around. When I was travelling I used to get so much joy from just exploring different places!

 

First stop, Buckingham Palace. Now most Londoners groan at the thought of going near it due to the flock of tourists and selfie sticks that are drawn to the area but not me (this is a one off as usually I would do my best to avoid such things). Working for the worlds largest Topshop I am slightly immune to tourists, I can’t really complain about them because as soon as I go somewhere new I become one.

I was much more impressed by the Queen Victoria Memorial than the actual ‘palace’ itself. Highlight was getting run into by a cyclist who decided to tell me what a cycle track was…. Which brought out my inner sarcastic goddess as I wasn’t on a cycle track, he was cycling on the ‘non cycling’ path…. But considering how angry he got about my presence I decided to laugh and continue on my explorations.

From here I walked to South Kensington and Knightsbridge, which was lovely as the sun was shining and I walked along residential streets which was much more therapeutic. My destination, The Natural History museum.

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I absolutely love this place, there is always something new. My main aim was to use this as an educational field trip, as the museum hosts a great Human Biology zone. But I spent a lot of time (most of my time) in the Red Zone, which hosts numerous volcanic and geographical displays. I have always been fascinated by the power of mother nature. I like how the exhibitions are always up to date with the latest information.

Referring back on my post about stress management, this is one thing I love to do when I am able! Finding your CALM (Comfort, Accept, Love, Magnify). This, I find, is always easier to do during a nice long walk outside. Thank you for reading

Hello Real Talk, Hello to Real Life. Miss Saigon & Manchester

My vow off silence has been broken, hooray! I have spent the past couple of months doing a bit of soul searching, focusing on my study, work and reshuffling my life a little. I am finally feeling a little clearer and ready to publish again.

 

So, slight name change! Sadly you cannot change the original WordPress link (if you can, please let me know, technology is not my strong point). I have spent a good hour surfing YouTube watching various bloggers discussing an array of topics and I had the thought that I want to blog about life, truthful tales about my life. So welcome to Joelys real talk about real life!

January is always a depressing month for me due to the lack of money and dreary English weather, this year felt even more so as I completely lost my focus at University and became very lost about my goals and intentions. I didn’t know what I wanted any more and lost my confidence, but slowly after being patient with myself I am now feeling a little better. Incredibly there is only just over a month left of University, which is crazy. Time is flying by! My grades are good so I must be doing something right somewhere! But enough of the moaning as that does not make for good reading.

So I want to start off by noting that last weekend I went to watch the final West End performance of Miss Saigon. Oh my it was incredible, such an amazing atmosphere and also highly emotional.

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(That tiny cup of Prosecco was £9.50… I will never ever forgive myself to mishearing the lady next to me who sounded like she said it was £5.50 which I was willing to pay for as a treat to myself. Never again will I be so foolish, I am not sure how theatres get away with this! )But anyway…

Eva Noblezada who plays the lead character ‘Kim’ was once again amazing, her voice brought tears to my eyes. I cannot believe she is only 18, utterly incredible. She’s going to go so far in this industry, I hope to one day see her on Broadway as she is reprising her role across the pond!

The entire cast were full of so much energy, you could tell they were enjoying themselves and we had a lovely treat at the end with a speech from Cameron Mackintosh himself commending the cast, crew and orchestra for their efforts. It was such a lovely evening to be a part of. Musical theatre has always been such a big enjoyment in my life, although I did not pursue a career with it, musicals will always be close to my heart. I intend to watch as many shows as I can this year (student budget providing of course). Hopefully I’ll be able to watch Wicked for the 100th time… There are a lot of new shows coming out this year and shows I have yet to see. I cannot wait to watch the fabulous Glenn Close in Sunset Boulevard at the end of the year and also the new production of Mrs Henderson Presents.

 

I recently took a trip up to Manchester to visit a friend and had a wonderful time, although the weather was terrible it was such a fun weekend. A couple of recommendations, you must visit these places if you go.

  1. Sugar Junction (60 Tib St, Manchester M4 1LG). This little cafe was really cute with old fashioned decor and a Victorian feel. We had high tea and I completely indulged in cake and sugar. The staff were lovely and the place had a great atmosphere. Their Guinness chocolate cake was to die for.
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Cake overload and a tired travel face

2. The Alchemist, Spinningfields. This resturant and bar has a great science/experiment theme! The decor is great with giant molecules hanging from the windows. Shots come in test tubes, cocktails smoke/catch fire, all in all its a really good place for a laugh although it is a little pricey it’s worth it! Some of the cocktail flavours were ridiculous. I have just found out there is one in London which I will most definitely visit! Thank you to Yan Couper-Harris for the video below, it shows the madness pretty well:

 

 

3. Finally! We visited the famous Cloud 23 at the Hilton Hotel. This bar has stunning views across the city due to being on the 23rd floor! I recommend popping in purely for the view! Even though it was a rainy day and we were soaked it was still a lovely stop off before I got the train home. However, the service was terrible. It took ages for our order to be taken, and after waiting nearly half and hour for our drinks we gave up and had to leave as my train home was imminent. I don’t like to give bad reviews as it doesn’t reflect the place as a whole but it had to be noted.

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All in all this year is on its way up! I aim to start searching for fun places in London and to post more information about my fitness workouts and nutrition ideas. Plus a potential fun collaboration with other bloggers and my experience of IV Drip Therapy, with thanks to Reviv Wellness clinics. xox