Wednesday, 30 September 2015

September Favourites

 Hello there! I know I probably say this every month, but blimey, where did September go? Tom and I went to Liverpool on the 1st and that doesn't seem that long ago, but here we are, about to go into October. A lot of what I've been loving I already mentioned in my August Favourites post, so here's just a few additions! 

Chelsea Boots

 I may be a bit late on the band wagon as I think everyone and their dog has a pair of chelsea boots, but I finally got around to ordering these ones from New Look. Being in Sheffield, I need shoes that are both weatherproof, and comfortable to wear walking up all of those hills. These go well with any outfit so I know that I will be getting a lot of wear out of them over the coming months. (I also feel like I have reverted back to my horse riding days!)

Gone Girl

You may remember Gone Girl being on my summer wishlist, and I finally got around to reading it at the beginning of this month. I won't say too much about it, as I didn't know anything about the plot line and I think if you don't know anything you will enjoy it more. Before this I can't remember the last time that I finished a book so quickly as I just had to find out what happened. Once I had read the book I bought the DVD, and although good, I preferred the book!


 Now Tom is a favourite every day and every month, but over the summer after spending so much time with him, I find spending one or two days without him strange. He was there throughout the summer to explore new places with, or try new things, or even just to sit down in an evening and watch a film. I can't wait to see what future adventures we will embark on together.

Lemon green tea and honey

 I am a massive lover of tea- I must consume at least 4-5 cups of it a day. Nothing's better to warm you up, or cheer you up, or even to take a break for. Now with green tea I know it's good for you, but on it's own I just can't get over the sort of grassy flavour. As it's freshers season and the freshers flu will soon be sweeping the campus, I've been trying to make sure that my immune system is up to scratch. I've been having the green tea with lemon, as lemon provides a lot of vitamin C so is a great anti-oxidant, and to add a bit of sweetness in I've been adding a spoon of honey which is loaded with loads of antibacterial properties.

 Now that's it's becoming autumn, I can guarantee that next month will feature a lot of cosy and berry-coloured things!

What have you been loving this month?

Love Jess xxx

Monday, 28 September 2015

Fortnightly Catch Up #7

 Hello there! How are you? I can't believe that this is the last fortnightly catch up post before I start my third and final year of University. This summer has been so busy, but I feel like I've achieved a lot, and so I begin my last year with no regrets. The last two weeks have been spent working, reading, and generally preparing myself for the start of a new year and term. 
 The first week of the fortnight was busy, but was still quiet in terms of people in and around Sheffield. I was able to pick up my leaflets for the SURE research project that I completed over the summer, so if you are in Sheffield be sure to take a visit to Special Collections in Western Bank Library to see it!

 I was finally reunited with Reesha again, and on the Friday I spent the afternoon at her house helping her unpack her things and sort her room out. Although I am glad that I was able to stay in the same house for this year, I did miss not being able to decorate a new room with my things! It makes me look forward to moving out next summer and being able to decorate a whole house myself (with a bit of input from Tom).

 One evening my housemate Ross and I made pancakes and oh my were they good. We had never made them before, so it was bit of a work in progress, but by the end we got used to how much batter was needed and how long they would take etc. For my pancakes I cut up marshmallows and strawberries and put these on a spread of nutella. They were really rich so I could only manage two, but I know for a fact that we will definitely be making them again!

 At the weekend I was working back in the student village of Ranmoor as it was the beginning of freshers week for the new students! After working two twelve hour shifts, I converted my steps into km, and then miles, to find that I had walked twenty one miles in total over the weekend! It was tough but I did enjoy chatting to the new students about Sheffield. I even moved someone into my old room which was really weird as I hadn't been in there since I moved out at the end of first year.
 Being back around the union with the freshers made both Tom and I feel very old. Seeing people out with maps, collecting all the leaflets that they can, and generally just looking youthful made us think- did we look that young when we moved to Sheffield? Although feeling old, I am glad that I know my way around the place, and that I generally know what's going on.
 In the middle of this week just gone, Tom's dad and brother came for a visit. It was lovely to spend some time with them, especially as his brother is off to University next week! This past fortnight has been quite nostalgic for when I first came to Sheffield, and how nervous/excited I was. I'm hoping that this last year will be as good, if not better, than the last two fabulous years have been!

What have you been up to over the past fortnight?

Love Jess xxx

Wednesday, 23 September 2015

What's in my University Bag?

 Hello there! It's currently fresher's week in Sheffield, which can mean only one thing- the final part to my University mini series. (It also means that wherever I walk I'm reminded that I'm no longer 18 and living my carefree life of first year, but that's a whole other topic). The final part to my mini series will be a 'What's in my University bag' post. On coming to University, lectures and seminars were completely different to having lessons in school, so I was a bit confused about what I actually needed to take. On talking to a few freshers both last year and this year, this seems to be a common question, so I thought I would share with you what I take! Even if you're not a fresher, or you're not at University, you might just want to have a nosey as I know I always do when a 'What's in my handbag' video pops into my subscription box on youtube. So onto what is in my bag!

I actually take two bags with me, a backpack and a tote bag (ignore the slippers). I bought this small backpack last autumn from Urban Outfitters, and as it's small it's perfect as it means I don't overpack. I mainly use this for things like my lunch, or a reading book and my purse etc, and the Cath Kidston tote bag for my course books and paper. The backpack is no longer in stock, but I found this one on the site which is very similar. The tote bag folds away so it's great to put in my backpack and then take out when I need it. Again this is not available anymore, but there are similar ones such as this one!

So, what's in the tote bag? 
Paper: I'm fussy about this as it has to be the oxford campus paper. If you've never felt how soft this paper is, go to your nearest stockist and touch it. There's no going back to other paper once you have used this! It's great as you can write on both sides without the other side showing through, and it's easy to rip off the pad by using the indented line.

 Folder: Depending on your subject you might want to take a proper ring binder, but for me this takes up too much room and is too bulky to carry. I like to take a thin clip folder where I can put any papers that I need for the day, or any that are given to me, and then transfer them to my big lever arch binder at home where everything is together. Another thing about taking in a ring binder that I don't like is that fact that it contains all of your work, and if you lose that you're screwed come exam time!

Pencil Case: Pretty self-explanatory but think pens, pencils and highlighters!

 Page markers: I carry these with me as there's bound to be something that I'm reading and want to come back to, or look at in a seminar, and so having a page marker in the book makes this a lot easier. You can just use cheap coloured ones (which I will still use for the majority!) but I found these adorable sausage dog ones on Busy B.

 This is generally what I take in my tote bag on a daily basis, but this will change depending on what lectures or seminars I have, as I will normally need to take the text of the week for seminars. If I only have one thing on in a day I will normally just take my iPad with me and type my notes up on there, and then write them out when I get home as this saves a lot on space!

So, what's in the backpack?
Purse: Now rather than taking my whole bulky purse with me into uni, I use this card holder (similar) from Cath Kidston. It's perfect as I can slot my ucard into the top bit and grab it out when necessary, and then I can put a bit of cash, or my debit card into the bigger compartment and I'm good to go. 

Small pouch: I have this small purse that I bought from Accessorize years ago, but in it I keep things like paracetamol, plasters...things that I may need whilst I am out, all tidily in one place. 

Odd bits and bobs: These things are sort of scattered about my bag, in the front pocket, or in the pockets inside the bag. As with the small pouch I carry these around as you never know when you might need them! I will just emphasise hand sanitiser, especially for University, as you don't want to catch everyone's freshers flu.

Diary: The last thing that I carry with me on a regular basis is my academic diary. I love this design and each week is spread across two pages so there's room to differentiate between academic, and non-academic things that are on. If you are at University, you will need one of these! There's so much going on that you simply can't remember it all, and I would be in such a fluster trying to remember everything without this.

 Of course if I am having my lunch down at uni then I will take this with me, and I will always take a drink and snack. I will also have my phone and keys with me! I hope that if you are soon to start going to lectures and seminars that this has helped in some way as to what you should take. This now ends my University mini series and I hope you've enjoyed it! Good luck for the year ahead.

Love Jess xxx

Sunday, 20 September 2015

Mid-Week Getaway to Liverpool

 Hello there! Back at the beginning of the month Tom and I took a mid-week trip to Liverpool for a few days. You may remember from waaaaay back in the day my post on places that I would like to visit in the UK, and Liverpool was one of them that I can now tick off! My parents took a trip last year and really enjoyed their visit, and if they think it was worth the 5 and a bit hour train journey from Norwich, then we could take the hour and a half trip. I love going abroad to discover new places, but you still need to explore your own country, so I really enjoy going to places that I've never been before!
 Both Tom and I found that Liverpool was a beautiful city. It's one of those places that you can go to, without really having an idea of where you want to go to, and just go for a walk out of your hotel and you'll soon find something. On arriving in the late afternoon, we went for a walk down and around the dock area and it was so windy! 

 Down by the dock there was a chain where couples have attached locks, just like the famous 'love lock' bridge in Paris. 

 On our first full day in Liverpool, we took a trip to the Central Perk Cafe, and oh my, if you are a massive Friends fan like myself, then you need to go there! It's a replica of the cafe from the programme, and they play the Friends boxset on repeat, so whilst you are watching the gang sit on the famous orange couch, you too can sit on the orange couch. All of the drinks and food are friends related, even the sizes! (You can pick between a 'Marcel' for a small drink, or a 'Joey' for a large one). On top of all of this I had pancakes for breakfast which were great! This was all made even nicer by the fact that it was absolutely chucking it down outside- but I was quite happy to stay in there longer! On the sign below on the left, they've even gone to the effort to write out a piece about the cafe and what you can have, to the theme tune! (Cue my inner english student being able to recognise the beat of the lines!). 

 After our breakfast we went to have a look around the Tate Liverpool, and after this the Maritime Museum where we had our lunch. Although by this point it had stopped raining, it still looked a bit threatening outside, so whilst we were having lunch I did a quick google search of other museums in the area, and we decided on the World Museum.  The World Museum was honestly one of the best museums I have visited, and after walking round I couldn't believe that it was all free to visit! The museum is split into 5 floors, which are dedicated to different things. From and aquarium to a planetarium, there is so much on offer and so much to see- we ended up staying a good two hours there! The exhibits have a range of things on offer, so both adults and children could enjoy it. I would highly recommend a visit!

  For our evening meal we took a trip to Bill's. Neither of us had been to a Bill's before, but I had heard good things about it so I thought we should give it a go! It was a really lovely place and all of the staff were so friendly, that if I see one again I will definitely be going in.

 As the weather was a lot better the day after, we decided to go on the open top tour bus around the city to see it properly! We went once around the route, and then on the second time around got off near the Metropolitan Cathedral to have a look around. From here we walked on to the other Cathedral before walking back into the main part of the city. 

On the tour we went past the Beatles area and of course I had to take a photo of my favourite member- Ringo.

 Once we had walked back to the inner city, we went to have a look around the Walker Gallery. What we found to be great about Liverpool was the wide range of museums and art galleries that had really good exhibitions in, but were completely free to get into.

 After our busy day we returned to the hotel for our evening meal. I, and I think I can speak for Tom too, had a really enjoyable time in Liverpool, as it has so much on offer. I definitely think that I would like to return one day, but until that time, explore more cities within the UK!

 What are some of your favourite cities to visit?

Love Jess xxx
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