Month: April 2012

Roast Time.

Hey there!

(I’m afraid this will be a really brief post because I’m off to bed in a sec, up early for one of my last lectures.)

Well I’m back at uni, unpacked, settled, with my schedule of the week in place. It feels a little odd, especially knowing I’m going home tomorrow afternoon, but I think it’s going to be okay (hopefully).

There’s something about being able to plan things and have everything under control that makes things seem okay. I think the key to this last term is going to be being completely organised. I’ve decided that that’s my new favourite word for the next month.

Before I left this afternoon my parents prepared a bit of a feast.

Roast chicken, roast potatoes, broccoli and an amazing gravy. Probably my last roast in a long time! I love home-cooked comfort food for rainy days like today, especially when I’m feeling a little emotional. Perfect.

You know what else is perfect?

Pie.

Apple and raspberry pie to be precise. With a dollop of natural yogurt. Is this what you were after Jessica? 😉

I’m going to miss home, and miss my family (although I see both again tomorrow obviously). It’s not easy doing this last stretch, mainly because I like this place despite everything, and it’s a shame I have to be doing essays, revising and exams for the last few weeks that I have here.

Hopefully I’ll get through it in one piece without collapsing or anything else!

Anyway, I’m off to bed. Night blogworld 🙂

Can I just ask, people from the UK, is there anywhere in this country where it isn’t raining?
What’s the best thing you did this weekend?
Any exams, deadlines, important meetings or interviews coming up soon?

 

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For the Last Time.

Today was the last time I go through the whole ‘last-day-home-before-heading-back-to-uni’ thing.

It feels a little odd to be honest. Although I feel a bit sad to leave, I’m going to miss my family and the comfort of home, at the same time I have this overwhelming need to embrace living independently again as it’s the last opportunity I’ll have for a while.

A mixed bundle of emotions really.

After working almost constantly for the past week I decided that my last day could be more relaxing so all I’ve done work-wise is some reading and a touch of research. I’ve left my favourite essay till last and the reading I’m doing for it is fascinating so it’s not stressing me out too much.

Helps that today has been lovely (despite the lack of sun and the presence of heavy showers).

Freshly toasted English muffins with a dollop of butter, melting deliciously into the dough. One of my favourite rainy day eats. Perfect for being curled up on the sofa with the family.

Summer veg stir-fry with egg-fried rice. Seems a bit like wishful thinking in this weather but it’s really delicious. Hats off to Mr Fearnley-Whittingstall.

What better way to finish than Ben & Jerry’s Caramel Chew Chew and Haagen Dazs Pralines and Cream? (The answer is – there is none!)

I say today was my last day but I’m actually back Monday afternoon to Tuesday evening because I have an important hospital appointment in the afternoon on Tuesday. Irritating it may be but it’s too important to miss and unfortunately couldn’t be rescheduled.

What would be your ideal dessert right now?
How’s everyone’s weekend been?
Any plans for the week?

Thank You!

I want to say a HUGE thank you to all of the wonderful people who left lovely comments on yesterday’s blog post, tweeted and emailed me, it really means a lot! It’s days like this that I’m so grateful to be part of this amazing community, you are all such fantastic support 🙂

I’m feeling a lot better about it now that I’ve written it for the world to see and your comments have really helped me see it more positively!

Today I’ve been powering through work because it’s almost the end of the holidays. I had a singing lesson yesterday, I love my singing teacher and we’re doing some incredibly challenging (but still amazingly fun) pieces at the moment. It’s great to be really pushed at something I enjoy, improving every week brings such a brilliant feeling.

My desk has looked like this for the past few days:

In fact, right now it’s a bit messier. I’m usually a super neat, organised kind of person… apart from my desk. It is almost always a mess! I like to think that it’s merely the sign of a creative mind at work 😉

I actually managed to finish an essay today (I still have one left). I wrote another 1500 words so I was quite pleased with myself. The next 5 weeks are going to be really really stressful with essays, prep work, revision and then exams. I feel a bit strange about it though because whilst I want it to quickly as I’m desperate for the summer holidays, I’m also feeling a little odd about it because I am quite sad to be leaving the uni, the city and the people behind.

Hopefully I’ll be so distracted by exams that I won’t have time to think about all of that!

Other than working today I got lots of cuddles in with this munchkin:

I’m really going to miss having my little furball to curl up with when I’m back at uni. Poppy always keeps me company when I’m writing essays 🙂

I know I say this every time but I’m also going to miss the delicious food I’ve been eating this Easter. I’m so grateful that my parents are such good cooks (hopefully I’ve inherited that skill) because I eat so well at home. Still, I do quite like being able to plan my own meals so it’s not all bad!

Dinner tonight:

Vegetable and chickpea couscous 🙂 It’s such a great dinner for the rubbish weather we’ve been having (it’s been raining most of the day for at least the last two weeks!) as it’s so hearty and warming. Shame we’re having this weather at the end of April though, I was kind of hoping it would be a bit nicer by now.

Anyway, I’m pretty shattered after spending the day at my desk working. I know, I know, that doesn’t sound tiring, but believe me for me it’s excruciating!

So there you go, only one more full day at home for the next month and a half… I’m going to miss it! But I’m also going to make the most of my last few weeks of independence 😉 Although, when I say that it clearly doesn’t mean I’m going to do anything wild, I’ll probably just buy books, beauty products and coffee or something!

What do you miss the most about your childhood home?
Any weekend plans?

Thank you again for all of the support!

 

Big News.

Hey hey there 🙂

So, as I promised you all yesterday, I’ve got some BIG news to tell you!

First, let me backtrack a little. As those of you who have been reading my blog for the past few months will know, this has been my first year at university. You will also probably know that it has been a difficult year at the best of times. Over the course of the year my condition has become far worse and I have really struggled to get through it all. Earlier this term, after lengthy discussions with my parents, my disability adviser, my English lit tutor and Tom, I made a difficult but important decision…

As of next year I will be transferring to a university closer to home.

This means that starting September I will be moving back home full-time and transferring to one of the local universities to continue my degree. I am still going to be studying English literature and I will still be going into my second year, just at a different institution. Although I made the decision a while ago, I wanted to wait till I’d been in to see the head of English at my new uni and received my official offer before revealing this to the world.

I’m not going to lie, it hasn’t been an easy decision. The lecturers and tutors at my current uni are fantastic and I’ll miss some of their lectures greatly, I’m sad to be leaving a campus and a city that I have really grown to love, and of course I’m really going to miss the brilliant friends I have made! I also have to say that I’m a little disappointed to lose to my independence. If someone had told me, this time last year, that this is how things were going to turn out I would have probably laughed, it is definitely not what I planned. But I really feel that it is the right decision to make – I have to prioritize my degree, and of course my health.

I want to take this opportunity to say thank you to all of you who have supported me through this year! Your kind words, your advice and your endless support has really really helped me get through this. You truly are an amazing bunch of people 🙂

So I hope I now have your support with this change! It won’t be easy to begin with, but I am really optimistic that it will improve my life for the near future.

What I Ate Wednesday No.31

Hey everyone 🙂

It’s that time of the week again. The time where all of you out there who are as nosy, and obsessed with food as I am, get to have a good look at what everyone eats in an average Wednesday thanks to the lovely Jenn’s creation of WIAW.

Today has been a busy busy day for me and I’ve got some big news for you all tomorrow! It’s all quite exciting, but for now all I’ll tell you is that I had to go for a meeting in town… 😉

But firstly, breakfast:

Every morning I make the difficult decision of what to have for breakfast. My choices are basically weetabix with fresh blueberries, weetabix with frozen raspberries, fruit and fibre cereal, or, if I’m feeling really adventurous, toast. Such a tough choice. Anyway, today I went with fresh blueberries and I was not sorry, there’s something so delicious about blueberries first thing in the morning.

Lately I’ve had people ask me about what I eat on an average day, as well as a few statements accusing me of under-eating. I’ve realised that although I often take part in WIAW I rarely post everything I eat in a day so I thought I might give you all a better insight, snacks and all.

Starting with one (or two) of these halfway through the morning to keep the essay-writing going:

These remind me of my childhood. We used to eat them when we got home from school, ravenous from a day of learning multiplication tables and spelling. I still eat them in the same way as I did then, first nibbling off all of the biscuit edge, then the chocolate ridge along the outside and then I chomp the little guy feet upwards. Immensely satisfying. (And a little odd, I’ll admit).

Today’s lunch was one of my favourites:

Chicken & chorizo jambalaya – delicious! Excuse its alarmingly orange colour, it’s partially my camera not really liking red tones and partially the chorizo oil, peppers and spices 😉

Such a tasty lunch had to be followed by dessert:

Stewed apples, Greek yogurt and a sprinkling of Rude Health granola. So so good. I could pretty much eat dozens of bowls like this. The mixture of textures is just fantastic and I love stewed apples flavoured with cinnamon like this.

I seem to be on a bit of a cereal kick at the moment so I had another bowl when I got in from my meeting, soaked because it’s been raining pretty much solidly for the past two weeks.

I went for a bowl of Fruit and Fibre which was delicious and I had it with a glass of fresh orange juice. I realise looking at all of these photos that I’ve had a really carb-heavy day today, I think it shows just how much working for hours on end has an effect on my energy levels.

Dinner was another favourite carb-based meal, cooked by moi:

Purple sprouting broccoli, spring onions, chilli and sesame seeds with noodles. It’s such a lovely light meal and I adore this broccoli, so much more interesting than ordinary broccoli (yes I am a food snob :-P).

So there you have it, my food for the day. This is everything that I ate today, snacks and drinks (bar water) included.

Don’t forget to visit tomorrow evening to find out my big news!!

As it’s WIAW, what’s the best thing you’ve eaten this week?
Do you find you have carb-heavy days when your energy is low too?
Any favourite childhood snacks?

 

Confessions #1.

1. I didn’t realise it was Monday today. After having been on holiday for three weeks the days have started to lose all meaning. Not that I’m complaining mind, I just sort of    miss the structure of the week.

2. I tried coconut water and didn’t like it. Sorry to all of those who love it but I just thought it had a strange cloying taste. Not my thing.

3. I enjoy the same lunch I loved as a child and fussy eater, nearly everyday that I’m just at home working:

4. I have written about 1500 words today and I still feel frustrated. It’s really hard to let go of perfectionism, even after a year of not being able to work to my full ability.

5. I spend too much time moaning about the aforementioned frustration. Have you noticed?

7. Over the last few days I have become obsessed with my scented candle. It makes me feel calm and it even seems to help with my fatigue headaches 🙂

8. I’ve eaten pasta five times over the last week and a half.

9. I miss Tom too much already.

 

Any confessions of your own?
Have any exciting plans for the week?

This Weekend #6.

Hello there lovely readers!

Well here I am, trying my hardest to ‘keep my chin up’ as Tom would say 😛

It’s been a tough day, knowing that he’s gone back to uni and that I won’t be seeing him again for several weeks. Tom isn’t just a boyfriend to me, he’s my best friend, so I really do feel like a chunk of my life is missing when we’re apart for extended periods of time. But this can just be viewed as an opportunity for Skype dates which make the perfect break from revision so there can always be a silver lining!

Today I threw myself into my work in order to distract myself and I’m pretty pleased with what I’ve managed to get done.

I think it’s down to the foul weather outside…

It’s hard to tell in this photo but if you look at the gutter you can see evidence of the heavy rain and even hail that we’ve been experiencing pretty much constantly today.

It’s also thanks to the hearty food that I’ve enjoyed today:

Jamie Oliver’s chicken and mushroom pie served with peas and wilted lettuce (the latter might sound a little odd but it’s actually delicious). I’m not actually much of a fan of chicken pie usually but today it was just what I needed. Perfect fuel for a hard day’s work.

I have only got one more week at home and then it’s back to uni again for the final push. I’ll be back there on Monday 30th and will be done with my first year (!!) in a month’s time, with my last exam on the 31st April. Not long to go, can’t wait to be done with this year. I have to say, I still have two essays to write and four exams to get through which is stressing me out somewhat but I’ll get there.

Anyway, it’s definitely time for me to get to bed so I’ll say goodnight for now!

What’s your favourite comfort food?
Any exams or deadlines coming up for you?
How do you deal with exam (or any other kind of) stress?