This Month I Have Been… May

May has ended already and I’m left wondering yet again just where exactly this year is going. This month has been a busy one, lots of gigs and things going on, home-wise it’s been stressful, I’ve had some exciting new things starting and I’ve started on a journey this month that I know is going to be difficult but hopefully one day I will feel ok enough to speak about it. McBusted didn’t kill me off but it was a close call, OMFG zone twice is a lot for any girl to handle especially when Matt Willis high five’s you [he’s still the love of my life guys!].

For June, I have a couple of events planned, I want to try and see my friends a little more than I have been recently and I plan on growing this blog a little bit further with a new feature that will be starting this week. I hope May’s been good for you and I hope June is just as good if not better.

Listening to: Lots and lots of McBusted obviously. The debut album’s from Tensnake and Thumpers, both of which are brilliant! The first full of house, dance beats and pop sounds and the second percussion heavy, uptempo poppy melodies with an indie twist. Both will be the soundtracks to my summer for sure. New music and discoveries this month came in the forms of SPC ECO, Keeva, Stems and Liz Lawrence released a brilliant new track. Swallow and the Wolf also released their latest EP which is wonderful and a review of which will be up on the blog next month.

Watching: Game of Thrones Season 4, Luther Series 1, Masterchef Final, The Vampire Diaries, Fargo.

Reading: The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, The Hunger Games: Mockingjay.

Cooking/Baking:

Cooking Quinoa for the first time which was surprisingly easier than I expected, I served it with beetroot, Quorn ham, tomatoes and radish with a creamy white wine vinegar dressing it was so nice and filling, I’m a true Quinoa convert.

My second Quinoa attempt of the month resulted in Soy flavoured Quinoa served with Pak Choi and Falafel, a vegetarian’s dream meal in my eyes.

Chocolate cake with chocolate fingers border and a Creme egg on top – you know when you have a load of chocolate left over from Easter and a stomach not big enough to eat it all, what do you do but bake. I still have a lot of chocolate left over though so more chocolate related bakes will probably be coming this way.

Quorn Bacon, Mushroom and Sweetcorn Pizza – me and mum decided to buy a pizza base mix just add water thing from Asda and literally they are amazing and only like 80p for 2 sachets, bargain! I made my signature tomato sauce which mum said is so good I should bottle it and sell it [#humblebrag] topped genorously with mushrooms, sweetcorn, Quorn bacon and cheddar, shove in the oven for 20 mins and hey presto you have the tasiest pizza I’ve had in a long time.

Eating Out:

I’ve eaten out a fair bit this month, what with pre gig meals and lunches etc so there is a lot I could talk about here but I’ve just narrowed it down to my two favourite meals/courses.

First up, the amazing Banana Godfather Sundae from Bella Italia, I’ve visited Bella Italia a couple of times this month and every single time they always impress with good food, good service and a menu that caters for most it’s a fail safe I’ll always trust.

I paid one of my favourite places in Sheffield, Bungalows and Bears, a visit this month. Me and mum went to a vintage and craft fair last weekend and walked into town afterwards for some shopping and lunch made even better with it being such a gorgeous weekend weather wise. I’d been meaning to take mum to Bungalows and Bears for a while and I finally did and she loved it, she had the Chicken burger which even as a non-meat eater did look very nice and I had my favourite, The Hippy Houmous Burger with extra Halloumi and Avocado. It was as usual amazing but made even better by the fact that they have changed their chips from skinny fries [which were nice] to skin on thick cut chips which in my eyes is exactly how chips should be. A perfect meal and I only just finished it even though it did leave me in a bit of a food coma for hours afterwards. Thanks for the amazing food yet again Bungalows and Bears! 🙂

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Buying:

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Forever 21 Sale Haul – Long Black Cardigan, Black and White Floral Dress, Red and Blue Stripe Cropped Jumper, Red and Navy Stripped Crop Long Sleeve Top, Pink and White Stripe Tie Dye Vest.

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New Look Sale Purchases – Maroon Heart Print Shirt, Pastel Floral Sleeveless Shirt, Patterned Skater Skirt.

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Floral Heart Shaped Pinboard and Jar from Discount Store.

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I Quit Sugar by Sarah Wilson I’ve seen this mentioned on a lot of blogs recently and I started following Sarah on Instagram and being intrigued by the whole talk around sugar and just how much of it there is in our food I decided to buy it and see just exactly how much sugar I was eating. I didn’t think I ate a lot of sugar just the natural sugars in fruit but it turns out I have a lot of sugar in a day in things I don’t even assume it’s in which is a little scary. I’m not going to quit sugar but I think this book is the perfect opportunity for me to cut down, think more about the foods I’m eating and it’s got loads of amazing recipes in there too for me to try out. Have any of you guys bought the book? What’s your thoughts on it?

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Angel Wing Earrings bought from the vintage and craft fair I went to last weekend. They are made by a local company called Paper Dolls who make an array of wonderful jewellery, check out their stuff here.

A Room of One’s Own by Virginia Woolf. I spotted this vintage and insanely cute edition of this novel at the vintage fair. Firstly I love vintage books they look so much more amazing and secondly I’ve always wanted to read some Virginia Woolf so now I have no excuse not to.

Loving:

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Rimmel Match Perfection Foundation – At the beginning of this month I decided to invest in a lighter foundation for spring and summer. The foundation I wear everyday is good for me and my skin but it’s a little heavy for the hotter weather. These days my skin is not as bad spotswise as it was but I still need a decent amount of coverage for dark circles, red marks etc. I saw this and was swayed by a) the fact the shades go into mega pale territory [i.e. me] and b) that it contains SPF, perfect for someone who’s pale skin instantly burns when it even sees a hint of sun. A liquid foundation is a difference for me and I decided to invest in a brush too for application. Both these things were new to me but over the course of this month I’ve picked up the basics and I love the foundation. I’m not a pro when it comes to brushes, far from it, but I’m learning and with a foundation this good I will be getting plenty of practice. It’s lightweight, applies well, the coverage is good enough for what I need and it stays in place all day [though I do use primer first]. My only issue is how shiny it makes your skin at first when you apply it but after a sweep of powder that’s quickly resolved and I don’t have to top my powder up throughout the day so much either. A win win for me with this new staple of my spring/summer make routine.

Kate Moss for Rimmel Lipstick in ‘Kiss Of Life’ – I purchased this on the same day as the foundation [3 for 2 in Boots are the reason I’m so poor] and I’m in love with this shade already. The perfect red in my opinion, it’s that classic red that looks good on everyone and goes with everything whether a casual outfit or a dressed up occasion. I love the matte finish as long as I apply lip balm first and the colour stays in place so well throughout the day and night even when eating and drinking. I’m so glad I picked this up as I know I will be wearing this shade a lot.

Simple Foaming Cleanser – Ok, so I’ve finally jumped on the cleanser bandwagon and I get the hype. I get why they are so much better for your skin and make up removal than just a make up wipe. I’ve read so much about cleansers over the past few months and vowed to try one but a lot I’d read about were either too expensive just justify spending money on just to try or too much fuss for a girl who wants a minimal and fuss free skincare routine. I spotted this in Boots only last week and bought it as part of the 3 for 2, that night when it came to removing my daily make up I used this instead of a wipe and I was converted straight away. 2-3 pumps of this, it foams up as it comes out, rub it into your face for a good 30 seconds to a minute, wash off and make up is removed. Granted it didn’t remove my mascara very well but I have a good eye make up remover anyway but foundation, powder, concealer, eyeshadow and lipstick all gone. My skin felt super clean and refreshed, I followed it up with the Garnier Micellar Water and my cotton pad came back clear as the Simple cleanser had got rid of everything. From now on, this is my go to for make up removal, I’ve been converted to a proper skincare routine finally and make up wipes are back up’s for lazy days or travelling.

Have you guys tried any of the above products? What are your opinions?

Seeing:

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McBusted – 3 whole times I have seen these guys in the last few weeks and honestly they have been the best nights of my life. Specifically the 2nd time I saw them in Sheffield when my friend went to merch and won some tickets to the OMFG zone, I literally do not think I have ever freaked out so much in my life. We were so close to them, it was insane and I really did have the greatest night ever especially when Matt Willis high fived me [seriously guys I am never ever going to shut up about that moment]. I’m gutted I have no more McBusted dates to look forward to and I wish I had gone to more than 3 dates but the 3 times I saw them were so amazing and perfect that I guess that more than makes up for not going to more shows. You can read my review of their Sheffield show HERE!

Foxes – I went to see Foxes only a couple of days ago now and she was utterly brilliant! I didn’t really know what to expect going there, I’d listened to the album which I loved and I’d read a couple of previous and positive reviews of this tour but I still didn’t know what to expect or what the crowd would be like. I was pleasantly surprised, the crowd was made up of a mix of ages from young teens to middle aged couples, all of which were out to have a good night. With upbeat pop heavy tunes like this ones Foxes was throwing out it wasn’t hard to have a good time singing and dancing along either. A relatively short set but a very good one nonetheless. The support, Prides, were very good too, synth pop with an indie twist and perfectly warmed up the crowd ready for Foxes.

Thumpers – the band I have been going on about non stop for absolute months came to Sheffield and obviously I was there. I saw them last year at Leeds Fest and they were amazing but for me this time was even better. The set was longer and I knew more of the words as the album has recently been released. The band themselves are a joy to watch live, they take their huge harmonies and percussion heavy sound from record add a whole load of energy and dancing rhythms and present that to you onstage. Easily one of the best bands I have had the pleasure of seeing in a long time and if you do get the chance to see them then I highly recommend it, you will not be disappointed.

Some great finds from the internet this month:

Nina at Indie Rock Kid posted this 10 Questions about Books survey recently and my love of books and quizzes on the internet thought it was the perfect opportunity for me to procrastinate a little in the name of giving you more info about me and my book relationship. I’m a huge reader, I always have been so this is perfect for me.

1. One book you’ve read more than once

I can’t really pick out exact books here but I know when I was younger I read The Famous Five series, Roald Dahl books and The Worst Witch by Jill Murphy a lot. Seriously I was so obsessed with The Famous Five, it’s the perfect escapist book when you are between the ages of 7 to 10 and fully makes you want to live a life full of adventure and ginger beer.

2. One book that changed your life

The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood

I studied this book at A Level and it opened my eyes to the way women are portrayed in society and in this particular novel, women face class divides in society through the different colours they are made to wear. We compared this to 1984 by George Orwell, where again women are treated as second class citizens, and I wrote an essay about the women’s treatment in society and class portrayals in literature specifically within these two books [in my opinion one of my better essays]. Here, Atwood is showing this to draw attention to what happens in our society, making it a point of discussion and it certainly helped kick off my feminist ideals. Since then Atwood has become one of my favourite authors and one I fully recommend you all read.

3. One book you’d want on a desert island

Either The Lord of the Rings series as I still haven’t read it yet or Games of Thrones series because I’m pretty sure there would be more than enough reading material there to pass along a few weeks or months.

4. One book that made you laugh

The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy series by Douglas Adams

Adams was a brilliant writer and one of my favourites, his books are surreal, wonderful and hilarious yet sad and have a point to make throughout. If you get a chance read these books.

5. One book that made you cry

The Harry Potter series obviously, The Shock of the Fall by Nathan Filer as well is so poignant and beautifully written you can’t help but shed a tear.

6. One book you wish had been written

I wish Douglas Adams would have managed to finish The Hitch-hiker’s Triology off as he would have wanted it, it’s such a shame it was never fully completed but nonetheless still a standout book series.

7. One book you wish had never been written

I guess it’s difficult as I try not to be snobbish about books or genres and I feel like singling out something would make me seem that way but if I really had to choose 50 Shades of Grey.

8. One book you’re currently reading

The Hunger Games: Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins – I am so obsessed with these books, they are wonderfully written books. The story of Katniss Everdeen is one I can’t put down. I’d avoided the hype until now but I’m glad I gave into it, Katniss is a wonderful character and a brilliantly written female inspiration. I could write buckets off praise about this book but I’ll be putting up a review of the series soon so you will have to wait until then for my full opinion.

9. One book you’ve been meaning to read

Lord of the Rings series and Paper Aeroplanes by Dawn O’Porter

10. Tag five people

I’m not going to tag specific people for this but if you would like to do it then feel free and let me know when you’ve posted it so I can check out your answers. 🙂

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