Category Archives: Life

Fundació Joan Miró – Barcelona


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Hello, hello, is anybody out there?! A lot of the time real life is more fun than the internet, when things get busy it’s good to live in the moment and not update your online presence… ya dig? ~ mindfulness ~ etc. etc. Anyway, hello July! Hello blog! Jeez this year has flown by. ANYWAY…

Last month I went to Barcelona, and had a mini road trip up to Cadaqués (next post!). One of the first places we visited was the Joan Miro museum, located at the top of an amazing hill in Montjuïc, Barcelona. It was super fun and colourful. The architecture of the museum is very ‘Bauhaus’ & extremely similar to the Bauhaus-Archiv in Berlin (also an incredible place if you love concrete as much as I do!) The Miro museum is much cleaner, feels lighter and more airy though. I wish I could live in a building like this.
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The place is filled with amazing drawings, sketches (all by Miro) and also a very cool bar and two awesome museum shops.
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A photo every hour – Monday 12th October


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I’ve never hated Mondays. I always thought Tuesday the worst day, less enthusiasm for the beginning of a new week but so long until the weekend! I wanted to try and do this photo every hour on a work day, so here is an average weekday. Monday style.

Above: 8am: I woke up and my server had decided to revert this blog back to 4 days previous – had to save everything from the cache in a panic. I also woke up on top of a dead spider. Still, it was quite bright and I can never wake up and be sad when I look at this Moomin poster.
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9am: Walking to work, which is near Old Street. I work in a tech company as an online Community Manager.
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10.30am: First cup of tea of the day and some breakfast. Gluten free fruit bread with honey and a banana. I never eat at home as 1. I am not a morning person and 2. my stomach doesn’t wake up and I feel sick in the mornings so can’t face eating until later on.
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12.30pm: A trip on my lunch break to Waitrose to grab some groceries for dinner. Also got a piece of roast chicken for my lunch.
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Book review: Gut – Giulia Enders


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I noticed this book in the entrance display of Waterstones and as I’ve been going through the ~ motions ~ with my own digestive system for the past couple of months, naturally I picked it up.

It said it was an international bestseller – I know, an international bestseller about the digestive system!? It must be at least funny, if not educational I thought.

I’ve read before that the gut can have an effect on your emotional well being, and that the sayings ‘butterflies in my tummy’, ‘a gut feeling’, actually have some science behind them. However, I never understood too much about the subject, I just knew from personal experience that when I’m not having a great time mentally, my stomach issues are much worse.

I have also read that serotonin is mainly produced in our gut, which is an important chemical that controls our mood, I’ve always wondered what that meant – in terms of the connections it could mean are there.

There were a couple of things that really interested me in this book, from a perspective of mental illness and digestive issues so I’ll highlight a couple of the things I found most interesting. Moreover, I did find the whole book really charmingly written, I liked the way she wrote it like lots of little stories. I learned a lot about the whole of our digestive system, and it wasn’t boring! Here are a couple of main points that stuck out to me…

Why your tummy doesn’t like stress

When you are stressed, your brain wants to solve the ‘problem’. To do this it needs to borrow energy from our gut. The gut is informed via nerves that we are stressed, and so it decides to save energy on digestion to help with the stress our brain is going through. When this happens it alters the way our gut actually works temporarily. Enders explains how this situation is not ‘designed for long term use’. If our brains think we are in an emergency situation all the time it uses the gut to ‘fund’ this. She goes on to tell us that when the gut has to forgo energy in ‘favour of our brain’ it’s own health suffers and therefore our own. This can cause the gut to become more sensitive in lots of ways – including intolerance to food and basically, poopy problems. It can also mean the ‘bad bacteria’ has more chance of taking over – which can cause illness for us. Even after long term periods of stress or mental illness, the gut can still be negatively effected. Sort of like a ‘pay back’. Which is why you might feel ill even after the initial stressful times you had.

Wheat just wants to survive being eaten by insects! A reason lots of people are intolerant or sensitive to gluten

When wheat is growing in the wild, just hanging out – it doesn’t want to be eaten by predators. It makes it’s seeds slightly poisonous so that insects don’t want to eat it, the gluten has the effect of inhibiting an important digestive enzyme which causes the grasshopper to have an tummy upset. That puts them off doing it again and again.

These seeds are what causes gluten intolerance or sensitivity in humans too. Gluten can pass into parts of our gut in a partially undigested state, Enders tells us. Basically, that means it can end up in places that our body doesn’t want or need it. Some peoples bodies react really badly to this and it causes damage, others find it causes a bit of trouble, and some people are not affected by it at all.

So in simplistic terms, that’s why gluten can be a pain in the butt for some of us, and seemingly fine for others. The book does go into the subject in more detail if you are interested to learn more.

Gut bacteria is a contributing factor to our mood

There have been lots of experiments on mice in terms of depression. A well used experiment involves making the mice swim. This is to see how long they will keep swimming until they give up and die (I know, quite sad). The mice that are less ‘depressive’ will swim for longer before they give up. Scientists test new anti-depressants in this way and it tends to show positive results if they work.

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How to dress up like a Harajuku girl


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Recently my friends had a Japanese themed party to celebrate their engagement (it happened in Japan). At first I was like OMG best theme ever. But the more I thought about it, the harder it was! It’s actually a very vague theme, because there are SO many options. My attitude to fancy dress parties is that you should go as something that people will recognize, but something that’s not the immediate choice. I also think you should always put in 120% effort to your outfit, including make-up and hair. What’s the point in doing it at all, if you don’t go all out!

For the Japanese party I debated going as various animated characters, at one point I was even about to make a Pocky or Milky costume. As usual, time ran away so I decided to go as a Harajuku girl – I originally thought that maybe it was a bit too obvious, but it was actually quite a hard costume to pull together. Maybe harder than making a costume! There were so many parts to it..

For inspiration, I trawled Pinterest for days, which you can see on my Japanese themed board. Search terms like ‘Decora Girl’, ‘Pastel Goth’, ‘Fairy Kei’ became commonplace. As well as looking up classic Fruits magazine and book images.

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Above: Image sources on my Pinterest here & here.

The approach I took was to go as colourful, pastel and plastic as possible!
So here’s how I found my outfit…
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A photo every hour – Saturday 26th September


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I always liked the idea of a photo every hour, it makes for a more realistic photo diary. It also means you have to think consciously about what you’re going to frame for that hour. I like the honesty it shows, a real insight into someones actual day to day life, be it fun, boring or mundane reality. It’s also actually quite hard, and I probably didn’t do it strictly every hour on the dot…  As my first one, I know some of the photos are not that exciting/great. But I think it’s good practise and hopefully I can improve as I do more of these!

Here is my first photo diary of a Saturday…

11am: my new favourite breakfast. Granola that doesn’t have bloody wheat flakes in it. I’ve cut out gluten again as my IBS has been crappy and i’m going to be put on a strict ‘fodmap’ diet soon by a dietician.

Ingredients: Jordans simply granola (it’s oats, which don’t contain gluten. Though sometimes people who are extremely sensitive to gluten cannot eat oats because they are made in factories with wheat a lot of the time! But for me, they’re ok) / Real greek yogurt – I like FAGE as it’s proper greek. Not ‘greek style’. / Blueberries and raspberries. So good!
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12pm: Walking through Dalston to go to Andy & Eliza’s new house. Spotted a Metal Gear Solid fan. Strong hoody.lamby
12.30pm: LAMBY. Eliza’s toy from baby days!
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A Whitstable weekend


seagull oysters fisherman For the bank holiday weekend me and Henry hopped on the high speed train to Whitstable. It’s only an hour and a bit away from London but feels like somewhere much further. The air is fresh, it’s super pretty and very English. It isn’t tacky at all like a lot of British seaside towns (though I do love tacky…), I’d say it’s much more charming and old fashioned. The whole high street is mainly local shops and it feels like a very creative little place. We stayed in the best little cottage/glorified beach hut(?!) ever. Everything inside was to the best taste; beautiful gold copper lights, House of Hackney pillows, Habitat dining chairs, David Hockney books…
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Istanbul pt. 2 – Hagia Sophia and The Blue Mosque


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There are mosques everywhere in Istanbul, and when I say everywhere, that’s no exageration. Our flight arrived to Istanbul just before midnight, so to save money on the first night, we stayed in a cheaper hotel. I was having The Best Sleep Ever, when I was woken up to the super loud call to prayer from a mosque which was right next to our bedroom window! Kinda weird to wake up to when not expecting it, but also amazing.
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One of the activities that all Istanbul guides in existance say is: visit Hagia Sophia and The Blue Mosque. So we did…
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Istanbul, Turkey – Bosphorus, Soho House Istanbul & lots of delicious food


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Phew! I’ve finally edited all my Istanbul photos and now I’m wishing I was still there drinking beers in the sun! It’s such an amazing city, all based around the beautiful Bosphorus stretch of water. It’s actually bigger than London which surprised me during my pre-trip research. There is so much to do, and during our 5 days there we definitely didn’t cover everything! Highlights were the Galata tower area, a Bosphorus river tour (totally do it), exploring the Mosques (post number 2 – to come), eating all the foods and the Grayson exhibit I blogged about a couple of weeks ago.

Istanbul is certainly a product of it’s geographical location culturally. It feels very middle eastern in lots of ways, which I love: the people, the mosques, the food. But then it feels very western: the galleries, the little shops, bars, the younger trendier kids everywhere! For example the area around Galata tower feels a little bit East London or Berlin. But then it’s really unlike anywhere I’ve been in Europe, yet not quite as strict and influenced by it’s religion as the Middle East.

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Henry kindly took me for my birthday and we stayed at Soho House Istanbul which was the best hotel I’ve ever been to! You’re not really allowed to take photos in the Soho House buildings but it was incredible place, a 19th century palace. The food was also super nice in there. Though in Turkey, most of the food is AMAZING… I’d get obese if I lived there for sure.
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