Finding The Best Cream Tea On The South Coast: So:Cake, Southampton

1 May 2019

Hellooooo, long time no chat. As I'm sure most of you are aware, I'm currently in my last few weeks of university and it's fair to say things are just a little bit busy. Of late, pretty much all of my days have been spent diss writing and preparing for exams, fun fun fun. But anyway, I'm alive and well, I just don't have too much time to be creating content over here on my blog. I have, however, been posting daily on Instagram, so if you don't follow me over there - that's where you're most likely to hear about what I'm up to! 

Yesterday I headed down to So:Cake, which recently opened in town, to try one of their cream teas in exchange for one of these posts. Whilst I was gifted the experience,  my thoughts very much are my own - this gal knows a good scone from a bad one. 
Finding the best cream tea on the south coast - So:Cake, Southampton. Judging criteria include price, clotted cream quantity, location and aesthetic

So, a little about So:Cake. It recently opened in Southampton city center, and, by recent, I mean a few weeks kind of recent. The decor is all really colourful and bright, with pink walls galore - perfect for that Instagram aesthetic. 

Finding the best cream tea on the south coast - So:Cake, Southampton. Judging criteria include price, clotted cream quantity, location and aesthetic

As some of you might already know, I'm currently trying to cut out dairy (clotted cream is one of the things I'm giving a free pass, FYI) but I was very pleased to spot that So:Cake had Oatly Barista on offer - my current milk substitute of choice, so that's a big thumbs up from me. Anyway, enough rambling... What did I think of the cream tea? 

Finding the best cream tea on the south coast - So:Cake, Southampton. Judging criteria include price, clotted cream quantity, location and aestheticFinding the best cream tea on the south coast - So:Cake, Southampton. Judging criteria include price, clotted cream quantity, location and aestheticFinding the best cream tea on the south coast - So:Cake, Southampton. Judging criteria include price, clotted cream quantity, location and aestheticFinding the best cream tea on the south coast - So:Cake, Southampton. Judging criteria include price, clotted cream quantity, location and aestheticFinding the best cream tea on the south coast - So:Cake, Southampton. Judging criteria include price, clotted cream quantity, location and aesthetic

Taste 

The scone was lovely - it was warm when it came out, crispy on the outside and soft on the inside. Now, not to steal the scone's thunder but the raspberry jam that came with it was amazing - we all commented on just how good it was!

Clotted Cream Quantity 

As always, this is the most important criteria for me and I wasn't disappointed. There was more than enough cream for the two halves of the scone so there are absolutely no complaints here. 

Price

At £4.95, for a scone, a pot of tea, cream and jam - I think the price is very reasonable. So:Cake also offer an Afternoon Tea option which is £12.95 and includes the above as well as sandwiches and a slice of cake... Toria had one of these and it looked amazing, if only I liked sandwiches, huh?

Aesthetic 

So, aesthetic is definitely something that has been properly considered in this tea room. All of the scones come out on cute cake stands, the teacups are all floral bone china numbers, there's a pink and white stripey wall, a huge painting of Mary Berry and lots of other quirky details... Perfect for the gram, hey?

Location 

Now, in a lot of these previous posts I have been harping on about how Southampton needs a nice tearoom in the middle of the city... Well, here we are. Located just a bit further on from ASDA this really is a convenient place to get to. Hooray for delish cream teas within walking distance of West Quay!


So, overall, I'm very impressed by So:Cake... I love the aesthetic, the food all looks amazing and the scones were fab. Oh, and the staff were really friendly, too! It's fair to say this place gets a big thumbs up from me!

A Festival Refresh with PLT

17 April 2019

~ This post is written in Collaboration with Pretty Little Thing ~

A festival lookbook with an outfit for everyone
Hellooooo, well isn't this exciting. We have our first piece of festival content of the year andddd it's a collaboration - would you look at that! I have two festivals booked for this year so far, the first of which is Mutiny (click here to see last year's outfit) and the second is Boardmasters. Now, I know we still have a little while until festival season is upon us - my first is the 25th May - but there's no such thing as being too organised, right? 

So, what is this post, I hear you cry? Well, I've actually done my good deed for the month and have compiled a lookbook of festival outfits, each with a very different style. I mean, we've got the festival equivalent of 'jeans and a nice top' all the way to 'look at me, I'm at a festival' and a few other outfits in between. All of the items in this post are from PLT's Festival Shop and don't cost an arm and a leg, waheyyy! 

A festival lookbook with an outfit for everyone

The 'Jeans and a Nice Top - Festival Edition' Outfit

Now, this is exactly what it says on the tin. It's a really simple, but classic, festival outfit. We've got the staple denim shorts and a sequinned crop top - what more could you want? Paired with some glitter on the cheekbones (biodegradable glitter please, we're environmentally friendly queens) and some sunnies, this is the easiest and safest festival look of all. Also, that second picture, I couldn't not include it. It's a photo of my actual face when the DJ drops an absolute banger...

A festival lookbook with an outfit for everyone

The 'I'm not that into festival fashion' Outfit

Yep, I get it, festival fashion isn't for everyone. It's almost like there's more to a festival than just clothes... Like this thing called music??? Mad, huh? Well, if that's you, then this is a really simple outfit that I think is more than appropriate for a day in a field. A simple tshirt dress, bumbag and boots - a really easy outfit to chuck on with minimal thought required.

A festival lookbook with an outfit for everyone

The 'I want to look nice, like actually nice' Outfit

Or, maybe you want to make an effort, but, you don't want anything too garish? How about a black bodysuit and silky shorts? Also, we're allll about re-wearing our clothes around these parts and this outfit would not look out of place on any sunny holiday this summer, so that's a result. 

A festival lookbook with an outfit for everyone

The 'It's England, it might rain' Outfit

Unfortunately, the UK is not known for its tropical summers and sometimes it does decide to rain midway through a festival. It really is rude, isn't it? Well, this outfit has you covered. A sequin bralet that screams 'yay it's summer and I'm at a festival' but also a jacket, just in case. This jacket is really light so is the easiest thing to tie around your waist and forget it's there for the day if you don't need it. Alternatively, it could function as a flag to try and wave down your friends who will inevitably wander off.

A festival lookbook with an outfit for everyone

The 'Look at me, I'm at a festival' Outfit

Aaaaah, my favourite look of all. Yes, it's a bit loud. Yes, there's nowhere to hide in this combo. But, yes, I absolutely love it. I had no idea what the neon flares would look like on me, but, do you know what, I'm a fan. I'm not sure if I could pull them off anywhere else but a festival, but, for wearing whilst having a boogie, in the sun with my pals - I think they're perfect. Oh, and if neon flares aren't enough, add a cow print bandeau to really make it obvious that you're at a festival...


Well, which outfit was your favourite then, which is the most you?? I'd love to know! All of the items in this post were gifted to me by PLT and I hope it's inspired you to give your wardrobe a refresh for this festival season. If not, thank you for reading and getting to the end of this post regardless!

Sick Tings 046

14 April 2019

Hellooooo, how are ya doing? Welcome back to another Sick Tings post. I think the first thing to mention is that I've actually been dairy-free for an entire week now! I started this mission last Sunday with a cartoon of almond milk, and now, here we are. I've since decided that oat milk very much is the way forward, especially if you're a porridge fan. I've decided that oat milk (unsurprisingly) is much better in porridge than normal milk. 

So, have I noticed any differences over the last week? I definitely think I'm less bloated than I was before, but that could also be because I'm having to be much more conscious of what I'm eating. Read: basically, I'm just not eating crap anymore. All I've been thinking about, however, is a big cheesy dominos but I've resisted - I'm not sure if I'll ever be ready for vegan cheese. 

A lifestyle roundup of my week at university featuring all I've bought, watched, eaten, seen and been up to. Featuring my 1 week on dairy-free update, moving my room around and the realities of third year
Monday was a very dull day. I spent pretty much every waking hour at my laptop, with an hour of painting the bathroom mixed in there too. Woop woop, what a fun day. Third year is greaaaat fun. Tuesday morning was spent in much the same way that Monday was; doing uni work on my laptop. That afternoon, my Mum and I went shopping to grab some more bits we needed for our bathroom redecoration. Tuesday is also the day I bought my first cartoon of oat milk aka the day that my dairy free days were revolutionized. I had dinner at home home and then headed back to uni in the evening for data collection the following day.As I've mentioned many a time before, my dissertation is on homelessness and this semester I am carrying out my own research study. So, I made my own questionnaire (lol, don't do that, it's really hard to score it whilst ensuring its both valid and reliable) and have been completing data collection in person, in a number of homeless hostels. Well, on Wednesday we attempted to collect some data and were turned away because it was just far too busy. But, rather than make it a totally wasted visit Jess and I decided to go to McDonald's to make ourselves feel a bit better. Spoiler: it worked.Thankfully, we were able to go to a different hostel on Thursday and collected another round of data. We're just about halfway through now, so, hopefully, it shouldn't take too much longer. I still have all of the statistical analysis to do, as well as the write up of the results, discussion, and conclusion... We still have a few weeks but it's fair to say that time is rapidly running out. My sister then came and picked me up from Southampton and drove the pair of us back home home. For dinner, I attempted my first dairy-free toad in the hole and it was very much a success. It wasn't quite as nice as my usual delicious Yorkshire pudding but it wasn't horrible. I sued soya milk for this if you were wondering.I spent Friday morning rearranging my room. I have a lotttttt of clothes and they take up a lot of space. So much space in fact that I have a wardrobe and a clothing rail in my room - and I needed to make room for the both of them. I love how my room looks now that I've moved it all around, it looks so much bigger and brighter. Friday afternoon was spent stressing over the aforementioned questionnaire that I made. But, thankfully, after a long old chat with one of my best pals we managed to work out how to score it etc. Thank you Jacob, you're an actual ledge on a sledge. I've mentioned that I have an exciting collaboration coming up soon, and on Saturday morning I shot the photos for it! I'm really pleased with how the post is looking so far and if all goes well it should be out on Wednesday this week! Then, Saturday afternoon I went and visited my Grandma which was really nice; we had Buck's Fizz and a long old chat about life...Aaaand, today, Sunday. I don't wish to sound like a stuck record but today has just been another day that I haven't moved from my laptop. I actually have some plans for this week coming so I'm trying to get ahead of the game, and get a load of stuff done in advance to make up for it. 
What have you been up to this week?

The Budapest Travel Guide

10 April 2019

The Budapest Travel Guide. What to see, where to eat and tips for the city
I recently spent four days in Budapest with my gals to celebrate our 21st birthday's and we had an absolute whale of a time. Now, Budapest is definitely not one of my favourite places I've ever been but with swimming baths, cocktails, good food, and sunshine, what more could you ask for on a girl's holiday? For our flights from Gatwick and three nights in an Airbnb we paid just over £90 each, which, if you ask me, is an absolute steal. We booked the trip in January and I can't believe how quickly it's been and gone?!... For this travel guide I thought I'd just run through what we did each of the days we were there, discuss the good, the bad and the ugly, and give you any tips or recommendations that we picked up along the way! 

Sound good? Dive on in...

The Budapest Travel Guide. What to see, where to eat and tips for the city

Day 1 

We arrived in Budapest at about lunchtime, following a delicious 4am wakeup, and took the 100E bus from the airport straight into the city centre. It costs about £2.75, takes 40 minutes or so, and the stop you're most likely looking for is Deák Ferenc tér. We then walked to our Airbnb (which was an apartment in a questionable looking block), dumped our bags, and headed out for a wander. For lunch, we just went to a little Italian restaurant up one of the side streets and sat in the sun eating pizza. We had a bit more of a wander before heading back to the apartment to chill before going out that evening. 

Now, the apartment itself was actually really nice. It had a large lounge that we put all the beds in and slept in, a huge mirrored wall that was perfect for getting ready and the bathroom was nice and clean. Looks can be deceiving my dudes, looks can be deceiving. 

Once we were ready we headed out for dinner. Having spotted a Hard Rock Cafe on our wander around we opted to go there for our first night. I've been to a fair few Hard Rock's in my time so I've sort of made it my mission to visit one whenever I'm in a new city. I had my usual order - the hickory BBQ bacon cheeseburger. It was just as good as always, a solid 10/10. We had a few cocktails in Hard Rock - accompanied by A LOT of staring from pervy men sat at the bar, ewwww- before heading out on the town. 

Our first stop was Szimpla Kert ruin bar: the first ruin bar in Budapest. Now, we weren't particularly overwhelmed by this one, so stayed for one drink, stood around for a bit with everyone else and then decided to head for somewhere with a little more going on... Enter: Instant. Instant is the biggest ruin bar in Budapest and they're really not joking around, it's huge! There are 20 different rooms with all sorts of different music, vibes etc and we had such a good time there. One thing to note - you pay a cup deposit as part of your drink bill which isn't particularly clear, then, when you've finished your drink, take it to the cloakroom to get your deposit back!

The Budapest Travel Guide. What to see, where to eat and tips for the city

Day 2 

Once we were all up, dressed and ready we headed out for breakfast. We'd spotted a really pretty looking restaurant the day before and opted to go there for breakfast. The place in question is A La Maison and the decor is stunning. Think marble tables, pink flowers, velvet chairs and gold accents - it really was an Instagrammer's dream. The food was really really tasty - I had the strawberry pancakes. The one thing that let it down was the service. The staff were not particularly helpful, one might say they were verging on rude... (That being said, it didn't stop us from returning on our last day, we just knew what to expect this time around!)

We then walked across one of the many bridges to Buda and climbed up to the Liberty statue. The views were of the city were fab, so I'd definitely recommend going if you have the time. Once we'd made it back to Pest, we grabbed our swimming stuff and headed to Szechenyi Baths on the metro.

Having bought our tickets we made it inside to the changing rooms and lemme tell you, we were a bit confused. The inside of the baths is not very clearly laid out, and the changing rooms are mixed, so we did look like fish out of water trying to work out if we were in the right place or not.

Included in the entry ticket is an electronic wristband that locks the lockers, so we got changed, threw all of our stuff into a locker and headed outside. It was SUCH a nice sunny day, so, unsurprisingly the baths were rammed. Those pictures you see on Instagram of people pretty much having the place to themselves? Nu-uh. The water was really nice and warm, and we spent a good couple of hours or so just sat in the water in the sun. 

Once we'd had our fill, we got the metro back to central, bought an ice cream and just sat in the sun by a fountain. We then walked back to the apartment, got ready for the evening and headed to Perfetto for dinner. The food was so so good, so I'd highly recommend checking it out if you're after Italian food in Budapest. 

The Budapest Travel Guide. What to see, where to eat and tips for the city

Day 3 

Today's breakfast location of choice was Stika. I had pancakes again, shock, and they were really good. They had a choice of three toppings and I went for salted caramel, yum. 

We then wandered over to the Parliament Building which was by far the most impressive building we saw in Budapest. After taking a few pictures, we then walked along the riverside and across the Chain Bridge to Buda Castle. Now, I'm not sure if this is an unpopular opinion or not but we really weren't that impressed by the castle. I mean, it was impressive but we definitely decided it looked better from afar than when you saw it all at once. 

Just a short walk away from the castle is the Fisherman's Bastion which looked a lot like something out of Harry Potter. We had yet another wander around and then found a little outdoor restaurant and finally got round to trying some authentic Hungarian cuisine. We had goulash and garlic langos, and the latter was definitely my favourite - just imagine deep fried bread covered in garlic. (It's way tastier than it sounds!) 

After crossing the bridge again, we went to St Stephen's Basilica and paid to go up to the observation deck. Now, it is quite a lot of stairs - and very high up - so definitely not for anyone with a fear of heights. The view of the city was amazing, the streets just kept on going and going and going. We then made it back down to the ground and sat in a park, chatting in the sun.

We got ready to go out once more an then headed to the igloos, or 360 bar Budapest as it's more commonly known. It's a rooftop bar with a whole series of igloo tents that you can have dinner and drinks in. The food menu is in no way extensive, so we all had the burger, and it was pretty good indeed. We then stayed for a cocktail - or four - chatting as the sun set.

The Budapest Travel Guide. What to see, where to eat and tips for the city

Day 4

Aaaah, our last day. We headed back to A La Maison for breakfast and this time I had the banana french toast. It was soooooo good! After breakfast, we wandered around a lot of the souvenir shops looking at the various fridge magnets, snowglobes and boob-shaped shot glasses each one had on sale. Once we'd all bought a few bits of touristy toot we walked to another park and just chilled in the sun a bit more. For those of you wondering, it was about 21 degrees most days we were there, so we really were lucky with the weather. We went back to the apartment, grabbed our bags, and took the 100E bus back to the airport. We ate at the airport, flew back to London and like that it our four days in Hungary were over...


Have you been to Budapest?

Sick Tings 045

7 April 2019

After a week without a ST post, look who's back. Now, you're probably wanting to hear my excuse for not posting this lifestyle roundup last week? Well, I was actually in Budapest at the time. 3 of my housemates and I headed to Hungary for our joint 21st birthday celebrations and we had a really nice few days. We ate a lot of good food, drank lots of cocktails, were blessed with gloriously sunny weather and managed to tick every item off my Budapest bucket list. I have an entire travel guide coming out on Wednesday that runs down everything we did, where we ate, what to do and what to avoid, as well as some general tips and advice.

A lifestyle roundup of my week at university featuring all I've bought, watched, eaten, seen and been up to. Featuring a few days in Budapest, carrying out my homelessness research and a bathroom redecoration
We flew back to the UK Tuesday afternoon and made it back to our house in Southampton at about 11pm. I spent the majority of Wednesday glued to my laptop, working on my assignments and just getting sh*t done. I went to meet my supervisor Wednesday afternoon and ended up being able to start my research paper on Thursday, waheyyy. So, the remainder of the afternoon was spent printing off all of our participant information sheets, consent forms, questionnaires, debriefs and mood repair tasks.

I woke up bright and early on Thursday morning ready to head to my first homeless hostel to start the data collection for my dissertation. I discussed my project here, but, in case you missed it, I'll summarize it again here. Essentially, I'm just looking at the timings of alcoholism in homeless populations as well as general levels of alcohol consumption.

We collected our first lot of data and will hopefully be collecting another load next week. After so so so long stressing over ethics and getting approval, I can't believe it's finally all sorted. Moral of the story: everything works out in the end. Our dissertation is due the second week of May so I still have a good few weeks to get writing and carrying out my statistics!

On Friday I headed home home and just had a really relaxed day. On Saturday morning I mentioned redecorating the bathroom, and within a few hours we were in B&Q buying paint and sandpaper. The bathroom was starting to look a little 'tired' as my Mum would say and so we've decided to spruce it up and go for something a little more modern. I think I'm going to do a whole post on the renovation because if we can do it - with absolutely no knowledge or skill - anyone can. The only hint I'm going to give is: banana leaf...

Andddd today, Sunday, has been spent with a paintbrush in hand. We're actually painting the tiles in the bathroom, so today has been spent doing that. Turns out it's going to need at least another coat so it's fair to say the paintbrushes won't be going back in the cupboard any time soon.

I also made the conscious decision today to cut down my dairy consumption. I drink a fair amount of tea with milk in it, a lot of pizza and I love cheese on my pasta. But, I've decided to try and cut it out/down for two reasons; 1) to reduce my impact on the planet and 2) to see if it helps my skin. One of my goals for 2019 was to clear my skin up and I've seen a lot of people online mention that cutting out dairy has been the miracle cure for them... I've made an Instagram highlight to document this adventure and so far I'm not thaaat convinced. I bought unsweetened almond milk and it's fair to say it's not the most delicious thing in tea.... Do you have a favourite milk substitute that you recommend I try?


What have you been up this week?

Finding The Best Cream Tea On The South Coast: Old Mill Tearooms, Christchurch

5 April 2019

Hello and welcome back to my favourite blog series EVER. In case you're new here, my name is Becca and I'm a bit of a cream tea fiend. So, I'm currently on a mission to find the best cream tea on the south coast. You can read my previous posts in this series here, and let me tell you, there have been some goodens. 

Finding The Best Cream Tea On The South Coast: Old Mill Tearooms, Christchurch
Today's location is the Old Mill Tearooms in Christchurch - located right by the Quay. Of all the places I've visited as part of the series this is definitely the most basic one yet. I'm going to be honest, it's a very no-frills tea room with a bit of a supermarket cafe kinda feel to it!

Finding The Best Cream Tea On The South Coast: Old Mill Tearooms, Christchurch

Finding The Best Cream Tea On The South Coast: Old Mill Tearooms, Christchurch
Finding The Best Cream Tea On The South Coast: Old Mill Tearooms, Christchurch

Taste 

I had a plain and a fruit scone, and let me tell you, they were MASSIVE. I'm talking so big I couldn't actually finish them kinda massive. They weren't the tastiest scones I've ever had and got a bit gritty towards the end... They certainly weren't horrible, but they weren't amazing, yanno?

Clotted Cream Quantity 

Now, for what is essentially 4 scones, there definitely wasn't enough cream for all four (in my opinion) as you can tell from the picture! The cream did, however, come in a little china pot - much better than the paper cups provided in other places!

Price

For two massive scones, the jam, cream and a pot of tea, £6.25 isn't too bad of a price, no? The lady serving us also said that we could go up and ask for more tea if we wanted - so the price is very reasonable in my opinion. 

Aesthetic 

Now, this tea room doesn't score any points on aesthetics. It's very basic indeed and there certainly aren't any instagrammable flourishes - there are no cake stands nor fresh flowers to be seen.

Location 

The location is by far the selling point of this tea room! It's right on the quay, overlooking the water. It's in a really good spot if you've spent the afternoon going for a wander and fancy some light refreshment! There are also tables outside, so, on a summer's day, I can see this being a very popular place indeed.


Where shall I visit next?

Bangkok, Thailand - Tips, Tricks and Things To Do

3 April 2019

Bangkok, Thailand - Tips, Tricks and Things To Do. A round up of what I did, where I stayed and my thoughts on the city.


Bangkok, Thailand - Tips, Tricks and Things To Do. A round up of what I did, where I stayed and my thoughts on the city.
We actually spent time in Bangkok at both the beginning and end of our trip as the flights were so much cheaper doing it that way. We flew from London to BKK and when we arrived we took a shuttle bus from the airport to Khao San Road. It took just over an hour and absolutely peed down with rain. When we eventually found the hostel we'd prebooked (it was very much hidden away) we were greeted by a customer having an argument with the owner in the reception area. She was complaining about all sorts of things and advised that we definitely didn't stay there, so we didn't.

Instead, we wandered and came across 'Everyday Bangkok' which looked waaaay nicer and opted to stay there.

Bangkok, Thailand - Tips, Tricks and Things To Do. A round up of what I did, where I stayed and my thoughts on the city.After dumping our bags we headed for dinner in town. We had cocktails, spring rolls (the best of the whole trip. So much so that I spent the rest of the trip comparing all other spring rolls to them) and I had a chicken masaman curry. We then went for more drinks at Superflow City Beach Club which was pretty cool, the floor was sand and there was a live band playing - the perfect chilled first night of our trip. We also made the rookie error of putting the aircon on the coldest setting after arriving back to the room hot and sweaty and going straight to sleep. Guess who woke up in the middle of the night so cold that they had to layer their clothes up and ended up sleeping in a jumper, t-shirt, shorts and trousers... Yep, it was this mug.

Bangkok, Thailand - Tips, Tricks and Things To Do. A round up of what I did, where I stayed and my thoughts on the city.Once we'd woken up the following morning we headed for our first 7 eleven croissant breakfast of many. We then took a taxi to the airport ready for our flight to Ho Chi Minh City.

~ Fast forward five and a half weeks... ~

Bangkok, Thailand - Tips, Tricks and Things To Do. A round up of what I did, where I stayed and my thoughts on the city.We flew from Kuala Lumpur back to Bangkok and stayed at a different hostel this time around to change things up a bit. We got another shuttle bus to Khao San Road this time very much feeling like seasoned travellers. Ironically, we'd booked into a 10 bed dorm in the hope of making some friends just before we flew home, but, when we arrived, were told we'd been upgraded to a 4 bed room and were the only two in it... Classic. No new friends for us then.

We went back to the same restaurant we went to on the first night and I had the exact same meal again and it was just as good. The spring rolls in Bangkok are amazing.

Bangkok, Thailand - Tips, Tricks and Things To Do. A round up of what I did, where I stayed and my thoughts on the city.The following day was very much a whistlestop tour of Bangkok. We started the day with the Royal Palace (we didn't actually go into the palace but wandered the grounds) and then went to Wat Pho (which is the one with the huuuuge Buddha inside). Following this, we took the 10p ferry over to Wat Arun, which I think is definitely my favourite Wat in Bangkok. We then got a tuktuk to the Golden Mount Temple which gave views of the whole city. It was nice, but nothing like the incredible views we'd been used to in KL just a few days before.


That evening I had yet another Thai curry and spring rolls before we got ready for a night out on the town, Khao San Road to be specific. We drank buckets, danced with some locals and I ended up trying both maggots and a scorpion and I can confirm that I really did NOT enjoy either. Even with all of the cheap vodka inside of me. We followed our new friends to another club, got a beer tower in there and then headed to McDonald's for a mayo chicken... Some things never change, huh?

The following day it's safe to say we were feeling a little worse for wear. We crawled out of bed to buy more croissants from 7 eleven and then got back into bed. We finally left the hostel at about 2pm and headed for some lunch. I had my first Pad Thai, and, I'm going to be honest, I wasn't that much of a fan? It was alright, but nothing on my Thai curries, yanno. We then took a taxi to the Chatuchak Weekend Market and it was HUGE. I'm talking over 15,000 stalls kinda huge. We wandered for a few hours each buying a few things with our last few Baht. That evening I had yet another Thai curry (yellow this time) and spring rolls... Are you starting to sense a theme here? We then had an early night ready to wake up bright and early for our flight back to the UK the following morning...

Southeast Asia, you were a blast.

FIRST IMPRESSIONS
Very busy and very very touristy 

THINGS TO DO 

- Buddha Park
- Royal Palace

- Wat Pho 
- Chauchak Weekend Market
- Wat Arun 
- Golden Mount Temple 
- Have a night out on Khao San Road

WHERE I STAYED & REVIEW
Everyday Bangkok
There's a rooftop that you can sit on, a communal area downstairs with beanbags and board games and the aircon was incredible.

Khao San Station
The hostel itself was fairly basic and there wasn't a communal area. The rooms were really nice, however, and the bathrooms even nicer. Breakfast was provided but it wasn't particularly nice, so we opted for 7 eleven croissants instead.

HOW LONG TO STAY?
A few days is definitely enough... Of all the places we visited on our trip, Bangkok was by far my least favourite. 

Finding The Best Cream Tea On The South Coast: Indulge Yourself, Christchurch

29 March 2019

I feel like the next installment of this cream tea series is a little overdue, sorry! I genuinely haven't had time to go for a cream tea recently, but, rest assured, after this post there's another on its way in the next few weeks too. I've received lots of suggestions of places to visit, and I can't wait to get to them all, but if you have any more then do send them my way. There's no such thing as too much research, right?

Finding The Best Cream Tea On The South Coast: Indulge Yourself, Christchurch

Today's location is Indulge Yourself in Christchurch. Now, I'm going to be honest, it really does look a little naff on the outside. The name isn't anywhere on the sign and the colours of the branding really aren't that inviting, in my opinion. Nonetheless, we wandered in and the inside was so much nicer than its exterior! A bit of a hidden gem one might say. It's cash only but there are cashpoints on the opposite side of the road, so it's not too much of an issue!

Finding The Best Cream Tea On The South Coast: Indulge Yourself, Christchurch
Finding The Best Cream Tea On The South Coast: Indulge Yourself, Christchurch
Finding The Best Cream Tea On The South Coast: Indulge Yourself, Christchurch

Taste 

The scone (yep, this cream tea only comes with one and is the first in this series to offer such) was pretty tasty! It definitely wasn't the best one I've ever had but it was good! 

Clotted Cream Quantity 

A good size portion was provided, 10/10. It did come in this little paper cup, however, which was a bit of a pain as it sort of disintegrated as time went on and made it hard to get the cream out of it. Let's not talk about the rubbish, lol. 

Price

The standard cream tea - a scone, jam, clotted cream and a pot of tea - is £4.95 which is very reasonable indeed. 

Aesthetic 

The interior was all white, with wooden tables and white chairs. There were lots of handmade cards for sale as well as other cutesy homeware bits too. It's definitely not the prettiest of places I've been to but it was still really nice! 

Location 

Indulge Yourself is right in the middle of the high street in Christchurch, so very handy if you're having a wander of the town! 

The Evening Acne Skincare Routine

27 March 2019

Last week I posted my morning skincare routine and I figured it was only right that I also posted my evening skincare routine. As I mentioned in that post, my skin is far from amazing and I've had acne for many years now, but I seem to have found a group of products that are helping it. Obviously, I can't guarantee that because they work for me they'll also work for you, but I wouldn't feature anything I didn't love!

My evening acne skincare routine featuring products from Dermalogica, Balance Me and Lacura

My evening skincare routine always starts with a micellar water to remove any eyemakeup that I've worn. Next up is Dermalogica's Precleanse* to remove any base makeup. It's an oil-based cleanser that really does a good job removing any makeup/sebum/gunk on my face. You apply this with dry hands to a dry face, and massage it in. Then, when rinsed with water it turns into a more milky texture.

Following this, I'll then cleanse my face again with the Dermalogica Special Cleansing Gel*. As I mentioned in my last skincare routine post, this is a really light, refreshing cleanser that leaves my face feeling really clean. 

When my face has dried, I'll then use Lacura's Healthy Glow. It's a not-so-subtle Pixi Glow Tonic dupe and I love it! Whilst I haven't tried the Pixi offering, so I cannot compare it, I must say that I do really like this product. 

I'll then use the Balance Me Wonder Eye Cream because your girl is getting older now and you can never be too premature on the eye cream. I'm not going to lie, this is the first eye cream I've ever used routinely so I'm not sure if it's any good as I don't have anything to compare to. That said, my eye area is always really smooth - so I guess it's doing something right, yanno?

The last product to go on my face is Nivea's Regenerating Night Cream. This is quite a heavy product, so I only tend to apply a small amount. When I wake up, however, my skin is always super soft and well moisturised. This was less than a fiver in Sainsbury's and I'm really quite impressed with it!

My evening acne skincare routine featuring products from Dermalogica, Balance Me and Lacura

If any of you reading this also struggle with acne prone skin - what are you holy grail products? Oh, and if anyone has any wonder products for getting rid of acne scars send them my way! As if having the spots themselves wasn't bad enough, there's nothing like being left with a face full of scarring, yay.

Sick Tings 044

25 March 2019

Ooooh, two posts in one day? I was so busy yesterday hanging out with my friends that I genuinely didn't have the chance to sit down and have a natter about all the things I got up to in my birthday week. But, spoiler: I had a really good week!

A lifestyle roundup of my week at university featuring all I've bought, watched, eaten, seen and been up to. Featuring my 21st birthday, three cream teas and varsity against Portsmouth

I said in last week's Sick Tings post that I was going to save my birthday weekend at home for this post, so, here we are. After spending a couple of days in London to see Post Malone I headed back home-home for a couple of days. I opened my birthday cards and presents, had birthday cake and then we went for a delicious meal. We actually went somewhere I'd never been before: Miller and Carter Steakhouse (the Bournemouth branch) and it was deliiiish! We had creamy mushrooms and pulled beef garlic bread to start, then I had a steak for my main, and a caramel apple crumble tart with custard for dessert and it was amazing! Lemme tell you, there's nothing more bouijee than a three-course lunch. My Grandma very kindly gifted me a Pandora gift voucher so I spent that after lunch and you can see what I chose here. I received so many other incredible presents including this bag here and plenty of other things that I'm sure will end up on my Instagram at some point! Thank youuuu, everyone!

That was the Saturday, on the Sunday my parents and I went for a cream tea, shock, how else was I going to want to spend the weekend? Well, funnily enough, it actually ended up being two cream teas and I'm embarrassed to admit that I couldn't quite finish the second. We went to two different tearooms in Christchurch, and one was significantly better than the other. (There are blog posts coming soon as part of my Finding The Best Cream Tea On The South Coast, don't you worry!) We then had a roast dinner (another of my faves) before I headed back to uni for the penultimate week before the holidays. 

Monday, was as always, just a day spent at uni! I did get to meet my supervisor, however, and we chatted all about my research project and he really put my mind at ease. I still don't have ethical approval for my study but he was saying that I really shouldn't worry and there will be other options if time really does start running out. 

And, Tuesday, my 21st birthday! Toria and I made pancakes for breakfast (what else? I really am so on-brand) and they were fab. I had my usual strawberries and white chocolate and they were incredible. I then went to my lecture - is that a bit a sad on your birthday (???) - and it was on maternal mortality, so that was a very cheery one it's fair to say. Then, I came home and for lunch Toria, Rhi and I went for a cream tea! Again, so on-brand. This one was at Kettle and Cake which I've already posted allll about and it was fab. 

Then, that evening, was my birthday night out. My sister and her boyfriend came, a load of my best pals came and it was all just really good fun. I bought all the ingredients to make pornstar martinis after my sister bought me a really pretty cocktail set, and they were fab. It helps to have a sister and a best pal who both have jobs making cocktails at a bar... After getting suitably 'merry' (absolutely sh*t-faced doesn't sound so good) we headed off to one of my favourite clubs in Southampton, and the only place to be on a Tuesday: Sobar. 

A very good night was had, and Wednesday, and some of Thursday, was spent making up for it. I watched all of the episodes of Afterlife on Netflix and I loved it! It was simultaneously really funny but also really sad, it's really really clever. 

The rest of the week was just spent doing uni work what with all of these deadlines coming up, so there isn't very much to report from Friday and Saturday.

Sunday, however, was Varsity day! I'd never been before, but, every year Southampton Uni take on Portsmouth Uni in all sorts of sports, and the winner of each game/match/race wins a number of points. The overall winner is then awarded the Varsity cup for the year. This year the event was being held at Portsmouth, so my pals and I headed down there and spent the day watching football, rugby, hockey, and athletics, drank snakebites and ate a load of Domino's pizza. Southampton won Varsity again this year, woop woop, but at lunchtime it was looking like it was going to be a Portsmouth win. However, we managed to pull it back and won by quite a significant margin, wahey!

Then, that evening, my pals came round for dinner and we had a really nice evening just chatting about all sorts of things... Just hanging out, yanno?


What have you been up to this week?

The Budapest Bucket List

As someone that's been fortunate to do a fair bit of travelling, one area of the world I haven't actually seen all that much of is Europe... That sounds so weird to write, but it's true. Considering that a lot of European cities are a few hours flight away at most, there really isn't any excuse. 

For example, I spent two months in Asia last summer but I haven't ever been to Paris (actual Paris that is, I've been to Disneyland). Anyway, after all of that ramble, I'm slowly but surely getting through lots of the places on my Europe bucket list, what with visiting both Amsterdam and Iceland last year. This weekend, however, my housemates and I are jetting off to Budapest for four days as a joint 21st birthday trip and I am SO EXCITED. So, for today's post, I thought I'd do a quick Budapest bucket list of all the things I hope we manage to do whilst we're away! (I don't expect us to do all of these, I got a bit carried away whilst making this list)

The Budapest Bucket List
  • See the Parliament Building
  • Walk around Heroes Square
  • Climb St Stephen's Basilica
  • Visit the Fisherman's Bastion
  • See Dohany Street Synagogue
  • Drink in a few ruin bars
  • Visit Buda Castle
  • Swim at the Széchenyi Thermal Baths
  • Wander around City Park 
  • Walk across the chain bridge (and see the two former cities)
  • See the Opera House 
  • Wander along Andrássy Avenue
  • Try goulash and other Hungarian dishes


Have I missed anything?
What's your favourite thing to do in Budapest?

Finding The Best Cream Tea On The South Coast: Kettle & Cake, Southampton

22 March 2019

Aaaah, today's cream tea post is a bit of a special one because Kettle & Cake is where I spent the afternoon of my 21st birthday. After a hefty scroll of google I came across Kettle and Cake and as soon as I saw the photos of the cakes I knew I had to visit. 
Finding The Best Cream Tea On The South Coast: Kettle & Cake, Southampton

Finding The Best Cream Tea On The South Coast: Kettle & Cake, Southampton

Finding The Best Cream Tea On The South Coast: Kettle & Cake, Southampton

Finding The Best Cream Tea On The South Coast: Kettle & Cake, Southampton

Finding The Best Cream Tea On The South Coast: Kettle & Cake, Southampton

Taste 

The scone (yep, there was one) was delicious. It was really crispy on the outside but really soft on the inside. I opted for the fruited scone, as always, and it really didn't disappoint. I also had a slice of the rhubarb crumble cake and, oh my, it was INCREDIBLE. Potentially even better than the scone which really is saying something.


Clotted Cream Quantity 

Plenty of cream for the scone, no qualms here!


Price

The cream tea at Kettle & Cake is £4.99, and, unsurprisingly, came with a pot of tea, a scone, jam and cream. The afternoon tea (which the girls had) comes with sandwiches, a slice of cake as well as all the usual cream tea components and is £12.50. I personally cannot stand sandwiches but apparently, they were delicious.


Aesthetic 

The decor was really really nice at this tearoom! It was fairly simple but had so many lovely touches. Each table had a vase with a few fresh flower stems and all of the food came out on pretty floral china.


Location 

This tearoom is located in Hedge End, in Southampton, which, is about a 20/25 minute drive from West Quay, so is not quite in the usual tourist part of the city. Of all of my criteria, location is the only one that lets this tearoom down - location aside, it's scoring very high marks indeed.



Where should I visit next?
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