Tuesday, 16 August 2016

Hitchin Lavender Farm




Over the past weekend I visited Hitchin Lavender Farm, I came across this amazing place through Instagram. And after spending five minutes scrolling through everyone's instagrammable pictures I knew I just had to go.
Not only is it great for taking amazing photos with the rows of beautiful purple for as far as you can see, its probably one of the nicest and unusual days out you will have.

Before coming across Hitchin Lavender Farm online I had know idea this sort of thing existed. I go strawberry picking every year at one of the local farms, but Lavender picking was completely new to me and such a great idea.

I told one of my best friends about it and of course she also wanted to go, so we headed up on the Saturday morning, from where we are it takes about an hour. The farm opens at 10am everyday and we got there for about 12pm. We knew it would be busy as it was a Saturday but there is more than enough lavender for everyone regardless of what time of the day you visit.

How it works



You can find all this information out on the website but I will also put it here just for quickness.
You can head into the main café where you can pay by card to pick the lavender. They will give you two tokens to take to the field with you, where you will then exchange them for an A4 size bag and a pair of scissors. Adults cost £4.50
You are then free to pick as much lavender as you want.

As well as picking lavender, there is also a Sunflower field where you are about to pick two sunflowers per person for 50p each.
Surprisingly it was very relaxing and therapeutic, except for the fact I did get stung by a wasp while doing it ha. Do watch out for the bees and wasps if you are taking small children.



The Café


After we had filled our A4 bags to the brim with lavender, we headed back to the café for a bite to eat.
Many of the food you could buy also had lavender in it which was unusual. We opted to share the banana and chocolate chip cake, and the scone with raspberry and lavender jam. Both were amazing and the slight hint of lavender was just enough.
If you prefer you are welcome to bring a picnic, and there is also a Yurt in the main field with food and beverages.

The café also is home to a shop that sells lavender products made by the farm. As  you can see from the photos there are a lot of products to choose from, so if lavender is your thing this is a little haven.


Its a great day out if your looking for something a little different, we saw a lot of young families there and obviously its all in support of the local farm which was great to see.






Feeding The Soul


Life is really about seeking new places to feed the soul in various different ways, and this was no exception. While we were in the field I was completely in awe of the beauty that surrounded us and the fact that it was something completely new and different for us both.
Making memories by doing the simple things in life like picking Lavender with your best friend is what its all about.
I would rather look back on days like this than on a night I went out to a cool club in London.

It was one of the best days of my summer and memories that I will look back on as time goes by.











Monday, 4 July 2016

Orlando United


When I think about Orlando the first word that comes to mind is home. For as long as I can remember it has always been my second home, somewhere that I have a made a million memories that I will treasure forever, a place that I have met new friends and old and made memories with them. 
Not once has it ever felt unsafe for me there until the recent Orlando attacks at Pulse Night Club on 12th June 2016. 

I was in Orlando when this awful tragedy happened, I woke up that morning to messages from friends at home telling me to stay away from the Orlando area, messages of concern asking if I was okay. 
It was 30mins away from where my family have a place. 
The same place I visit every year and I was there. 
It's mad now that I'm home looking back on it to think how close I was, to think he even scoped out Disney Springs. It was just so close to home. 

It was only a few months ago that I went to my first gay club in London for one of my best gay friends birthday, and it was one of the best nights of my life. The fact that everyone was so open and free and no one judged you. 
I've also been out on nights out in Orlando and the vibe is completely different to the UK everyone is so laid back and chilled out, people just go out in flip flops and shorts I absolutely love it. 
It never crossed my mind on either of those occasions that anything so terrible could happen. 

It's not until today when I watched BBC panorama programme on the Orlando Massacre that it really got to me. I was in pieces watching it and hearing about the awful events that unfolded that night by the survivors. I'm even in tears writing this post. 

But I didn't want this post to be depressing or sad. I wanted to share with people in the UK who maybe haven't been to Orlando, and the people who watched it unfold on the news and watched vigils happen through a screen that Orlando is United. 
It was amazing to see the whole city come together, never in my life have I seen people come together like they did. 
The fact people stood for 7 hours in the heat to give blood, the LGBT community is so strong here and the message it gave out was that the haters will not win. 

People lined up for hours to get the Orlando United t-shirts, literally hours. They were selling out faster than they could distribute. 
I got myself one, in a reminder to myself and others that everyone is equal, what happened that night will not change that love is love regardless of gender. 
It is something I feel very connected to through being there at the time and the whole vibe through out Orlando while I was there. 



A week after the shootings Magic Kingdom held their own vigil and it was the most beautiful thing I had seen. Photos by Attraction Magazine.





Two of the victims worked at Universal Studios on the Harry Potter ride. 
In the picture above work colleagues and  friends gathered to pay their respects in a way I had only seen done in the movies. 

I feel so devastated for the families who lost loved ones and for the innocent people who lost their lives that night, it could of been any of us. 
I only hope that the hate in the LGBT community ceases and that American get control of this gun crime before any more innocent lives are lost. 

Love is love is love is love is love. 

Wednesday, 18 May 2016

Dark Sugars Chocolate Shop



The story of my Dark Sugars experience starts on Instagram (as always) I came across them towards then end of last year and completely fell in love with the whole look of the store and how the chocolates were laid out, and most of all those amazing chocolate pearls which looks incredible.
I didn't look into where the store was at the time, fast forward to January, I'm walking down Brick Lane to the Cereal Killer Cafe and notice this amazing chocolate shop next door blasting out loud music and it looks an awful lot like the one I found on Instagram, turns out it was Black Sugars but for some unknown reason I didn't end up going in and regretted it ever since, which leads me to my first visit in April where I brought lots of chocolate to try, and got to try the most amazing hot chocolate everrrrrrr.

Where?

So like I said Dark Sugars can be found on Brick Lane. The one in my photo is the store right next door to the Cereal Killer Café, and as I wandered on down Brick Lane I came across another Dark Sugars store but this one was even bigger, so either way if your strolling down Brick Lane you will be sure to find chocolate heaven either end.

Its actually overwhelming the amount of chocolate they have and the amount of different crazy flavours. The strong smell of chocolate hits you as soon as you walk through the door.
I could of literally picked up one of everything as there was so many I wanted to try and many of them I have never seen anywhere else.
I had the nicest guy working when I visited, he was so friendly and even let me try some of what he thought was the best chocolate in there, and to be fair he knew what he was talking about.
He told me to try the liquid sea salt caramel, which happens to be one of the best sellers and I can see why, it was INSANE, like so good. I had to pick up a couple to take home for my family to try.


 
The Hot Chocolate
Now that is something else and I would definitely recommend you try if you are planning a visit.
I got a mini one to try out for the blog which was super cute and nice of them to do.
It was the most amazing hot chocolate ever, I have never had anything so great in my life, the mini one was definitely a good choice as afterwards I felt so sick haha.
Topped with milk chocolate, white chocolate and dark chocolate shavings, which are cut in front of you from blocks of chocolate and then put together on top of your already chocolatey drink.
Its not to be missed and it makes for the most perfect food porn photo.

 My absolute favourites were the chocolate pearls. I absolutely love food that looks pretty, and you cant get prettier than these pearls, they are shimmery and golden and presented in sea shells.
I got quite a few of these including my favourites Red Velvet and Wild Strawberry.
 I couldn't get over how pretty they were so I ended up taking so many photos of them!!







They are laid out in the most perfect way and you can just help yourself to whatever you want and either put them in a bag or you can choose to put them in a box and see how many you can get in there.
Another favourite from this collection was the Coconut Milk with the bronze shiny outer colour that was so creamy and dreamy. And you know when you taste something and it reminds you of a smell. It reminded me of really strong coconut suncream which I absolutely love, it was amazing.
The pipettes are a bit different too and worth a try, I picked up the passion fruit pipette, and you just squeeze the juice over the top of the chocolate which is a little different and works really well.







The shop constantly had people coming in and out wanting to take a look at all the amazing chocolate, a lot of people were in awe when they walked in the door which was nice to see.
I think its something we could definitely use a little more of in this country, although if I had one of these near me I would constantly be there.
Great idea as a gift for someone if you want to get them something a little different to your usual dairy milk and Thorntons
I cant wait to make another little trip back to Dark Sugars to pick up some more chocolate to try.

I usually snapchat on my travels around London which I did when I visited Dark Sugars.

If you want to see my hot chocolate being made then I will put the video up on Instagram soon.

Instagram - gemyd

Thursday, 28 April 2016

Nosteagia Bubble Waffle



If your a foodie about London then you would of come across NOSTEAGIA in your travels or on general good food blogs
Very much known on the Instagram, as far as I'm aware NOSTEAGIA have made it big purely down to people sharing the mouth watering bubble waffle pictures on the app. 

This is how I happened to come across them and I have been following them for a few months now. Literally drooling at the amazing pictures they put up daily. 






Where?

 Based on Shoreditch High Street at Pump the street food market.
Pump is a disused petrol station which is now home to the street food market with indoor and outdoor seating.
It is the first little hut on the main road, you can't miss it and if you do, look for the long line of people. 

You can get many other dishes at NOSTEAGIA along with bubble tea.
But I was after the famous Bubble Waffle.
I went for the Strawberry Dream but literally all the concoctions sounded unreal. 
I mean Mr.Oreo and Banarmarama!!! 

With so many to choose from your spoilt for choice. And you can even add a little something of your own to make it truly unique. From m&ms to flakes.
The bubble waffle is your oyster ha. 

The bubble waffle also known as the egg waffle originated in Hong Kong and NOSTEAGIA was one of the first company's to bring it to the UK.
While I was writing this blog I came across another company who also sell Bubble Waffles in London on a stall but only one day a week.
NOSTEAGIA is available every day of the week.

 




Sunday, 24 April 2016

Kylie Cosmetics Lip Kit Review




Hi guys, back with my follow on post from the How and Where to buy Kylie Cosmetics, to my experience with the actual lip kits and what I thought of them.

I purchased my lip kits in two parts, first of all I went straight for Dolce K and ordered that because that was the main one I fell in love with and I didn't want to risk getting anymore and then being left with nothing, other people who have purchased can relate.
 
The next order was Candy K, Posie K and Koko K.
  
When ordering I liked to look back over pictures Kylie had posted on the Kylie Cosmetics Instagram
And I also went from this picture that I found a while back on instagram.
 


First of all I have to say, the colours are nothing like what you see in that picture above at all or the pictures on the website. I'm not sure if the colour looks different on different people, but surely a lip colour is a standard colour and should not change regardless. But I have to give my honest opinion in this post on the colours as I don't feel what your ordering is exactly what you are getting.


Candy K

Candy K is Kylie's favourite of all the lip kits as she says its the best nude.
I wore Candy K on the top lip and Koko K on the bottom lip when I first got them and the colour was pretty much identical except for Koko K being slightly pinker.
The colour difference isn't that noticeable between the two.
It however is good for a nude, with brown undertones it does sit a little darker than most nudes would, but mixed with a too faced nude liquid lipstick it makes for the perfect natural colour.
But like many of the lip kits the colours are pretty bold and less natural for every day wear.

Also on a side note all lip kits have a strong sweet smell of vanilla.
It actually reminds me of the cheap lip glosses you would get as a kid. I'm not that crazy about the smell even though she has toned it down.
 
 
 
Koko K
 
Koko K ended up being my favourite, I was reluctant to buy this as it looks like a really pale pink in the picture above, but once its on it is like the nicest pinky nude, it looks natural and goes with anything. The staying power is really good, and Kylie recently said you only need to apply it once which is true. As they are mattes, if you apply too much of them they do eventually start to crack and peel and that's not a good look.
I tend to apply one coat of Koko K followed by a normal pink lipstick in the middle for a bit more a shine as matte can sometimes be too drying.
 

 
What I did notice with Koko K was that it looked like the seal didn't work right, as you can see there is gloss all over the stick and all around the top of the bottle which none of the others have.
It seems looser than all the others so that could be a one off faulty mistake but the lipstick hasn't leaked or anything so far.
 

Dolce K
This was my Kylie Jenner answer to a matte nude.
When looking at the photo above Dolce K does look like a brown nude.
However in reality Dolce K is a lot darker than what you see in that photo, its pretty much like True Brown in my opinion, I was expecting a nude but its not at all.
Its not a horrible colour and when I wore it, it actually looked really nice, but unless you have warm skin it could easily wash you out. I would say its more of a night time lip stick compared to your everyday as its a bit too bold for me to wear casually everyday.
I ended up putting a Two Faced Melted Lipstick over the top which was a pale nude to try make it look more natural.
If I had known this before it wouldn't of been my first choice.
 

 
Posie K
 
I decided to purchase Posie K as it looks like the perfect pink lipstick, not too dark and not too pale.
Once dried on the lips Posie K is more of a dark burgundy lip stick. Again nothing like the picture above. I have no idea how they even made half the lip kits look a different colour haha.
Posie K is definitely a lip colour for evening wear its just too bold to wear in the day time like I thought you would of been able to.
All lip kits go on one colour but once dried they look completely different and a lot darker. Probably the matte effect.
 
 
 
 
Swatches once dried from left to right : Candy K, Posie K, Dulce K and Koko K
 
Staying Power?
 
I have to admit the lip kits have staying power like no other, to the point of its actually difficult to get it off.
When I took these swatches I filmed a video on my snapchat of me trying to rub them off with a wet wipe, and they actually did not smudge or move at all.
Its actually insane how much they don't move, it took me ages to get them off.
And its exactly the same once on the lips, if you put the colour on in the morning there is no way you will be changing it through out the day without scrubbing at your lips.
 
Which brings me on to lip liners.
I think its important to use the liners as a guide before the lip kits, as once its on it doesn't move, so this way you know exactly where you are putting it and it doesn't bleed or run with the lip liner on.
My thoughts on the lip liners are that they are easy to use, nice and creamy and good quality, even though I'm not a huge lover of lip liners they do work well.

Posie K Lip Liner

 
Koko K
 

Dulce K


Candy K


 
 
The overall presentation of the lip kits are great, it comes in the box with the drip effect around the edges, which can be seen in my last post about how to get your hands on the lip kits.
Included in the box is a hand written note from Kylie, also shown in my last post.
The hype is insane on social media for these lip kits with everyone wanting to try them, and why wouldnt you especailly when Kylie uploads snapchats and videos of herself wearing them making them look amazing.
I have to admit they do all look amazing on Kylie, maybe her lips dont have any lines in them as they seem to sit smoothly on her lips which doesnt always look the same on everyone else.
.
 
Kylie Cosmetics has recently brought out lip glosses in nudes, and just the way she posts about them and wears them literally makes me want them ha.
 
If your looking for a good long lasting matte lip stick which is hard to find then I would recommend the lip kits but keep in mind about the colours that you order.
If your also not from the U.S then I would suggest ordering a few at a time as shipping is also added onto your purchase.

 
 
Hope some of you find this helpful when choosing your colours :)