Beauty and The Beast, I Love You

Cover photo taken by me at Regent Circus Cineworld in Swindon. 

On Saturday night, I went to watch the new Beauty and The Beast film, and oh my god it’s amazing
So, I decided why not dip into the lifestyle side of blogging, which I rarely venture into but I’d like to do more posts like this (it really doesn’t help when you never leave your room).  My life is going to have to start being a little more interesting though! 

We went to Swindon’s Regent Circus Cineworld, which is lovely, and I kid you not I have found my new favourite restaurant.  Coal grill & bar, you are divine. I haven’t eaten as well (or as much, rip my stomach) all year.  I had amazing food.  I went with my mum, dad and brother – as you can imagine, it was hard to persuade my dad and brother to come watch it, probably safe to say they didn’t enjoy it all too much!  For starters, we all shared some nachos, which quite frankly are my one true weakness in life; if I could live off of any form of nachos, I would.  My main was this amazing chargrilled chicken stacked on top of new potatoes with nachos (surprise surprise!), salsa and sour cream on top.  I never usually finish any meals – quite frankly I find eating a chore, but I practically inhaled this.  Chargrilled chicken is so damn good, and I have to have sauces with everything to make it digestible and this just came with it already, made my day.  I’d say if you were going, venture into the more ‘unusual’ areas of the menu which you may not usually go for; Mum got quesadillas but she didn’t really like them, she thought they were a bit boring but the chips were so good – I did try them, and can totally agree! It was more Mexican themed food, which I’m always down for (Mexican & American type foods, e.g. TGI Fridays, are my favourites!), but there was pizza, pasta and burgers too, so loads for everyone.  My desert was divine, I had the ‘Coal Mess’ which was their name for the best Eton Mess I’ve tasted in my entire life.  Now, I’m a bit of a desert fanatic & Eton Mess comes on top as one of my favourites: cream, ice cream, fresh fruit, sauces and mirangue – how can you go wrong? It was amazing, and they present the food so well! I admittedly couldn’t finish it all, having devoured my main course, but I did give it a good stab and got some help from my Mum and brother! 

 

It was so amazing! (That’s the desert I’ve been talking about for the past fifteen minutes, by the way.) 

So, after I felt suitably full (as in quick get me to a dark room where I can sit and be fat and burst out of my jeans full) we headed just across from Coal and into Cineworld. It’s a nice cinema, and we’d booked our tickets online so we didn’t have to buy any, but the man at the doors just scanned the code from my phone, which was really handy! They were playing songs from the movie in the cinema which only escalated my excitement even more (Belle is my favourite Disney princess and her film is the best).  We got sat down and it was pretty comfy, the trailers lasted for ages but then again when don’t they, and then we finally got to the film! 


I started crying halfway through and I did not stop.  I think the man next to me was laughing, but it was just too nice!  A friend had warned me I was going to cry, but Jesus Christ this was titanic levels – I practically flooded myself with tears.  I cry at the Disney film, and I cried at this.  I feel so sorry for the beast when they’re all being horrible to him because he’s so nice! It breaks my heart when all his ‘servants’ are sad for him also, but mostly I cried out of happiness.  Can I just say that Lumiere, Cogsworth, Mrs Potts, Chip, Plumette and all the other household objects are amazing! How they were made to be so realistic I do not know (some clever person please come teach me about CGI things!).  Lumiere as always remains a favourite character; he reminds me of myself & I just love him! Also, Gaston was amazing, Luke Evans was so well cast: his sideckick LeFou (Josh Gad) is bob on & sounds just like he does in the original.  

Also, not only is Emma Watson the perfect Disney heroine – she can sing? Yes, she can, and she can do it so well! I loved Belles storyline: her love of books (and Romeo and Juliet only my favourite Shakespeare is mentioned at the start of the play and throughout, more on that soon!) and her wit and intelligence just killed me.  The fact that she invents things too, which was rumoured to be part of the storyline a while ago, is so amazing to me.  All her costumes are as perfect as it gets.  My favourite Belle moment has to be when she is teaching one of the little girls in the village, and my favourite song of hers is ‘Bonjour!’ Which is the song that starts the film, and possibly my favourite in the film. 

Okay, so my favourite Belle & Beast moment overall, was when Belle is nursing the Beast back to health in bed after he quite scarily fights off wolves for her and saves her life (this made babies in the cinema cry, which made me want to scream because please shush), and Belle recites a Shakespeare quote and the beast finishes it.  I can’t remember which quote it was and I’ve hunted it down on the internet to no avail.  But it was such a beautiful and unique moment which was really touching of them to put in. 

The film was incredibly musical, which my Mum didn’t enjoy but I loved; I’m such a sucker for Disney songs! So beware, songs have been added but they’re so lovely and left me smiling and crying and I loved it! 

Best thing I’ve watched all year, undoubtedly. 

Soph xx

Amazing Summer Smoothie

Hey guys!

Sorry this post is a bit late, I’m going to aim to get posts up around 5pm usually, so check back tomorrow night for another post.  Anyway, tonight I bring you an amazing recipe for the most delicious smoothie perfect for the summer months.  Enjoy!

Smoothie cover image

What you’re going to need:

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  1. 200-250ml of apple juice depending on the consistency you’d like.  The more juice you use, the thinner the smoothie will end up being.
  2. One medium sized banana
  3. A good few handfuls of frozen berries (summer fruit selection)
  4. 2-3 tablespoons of natural yogurt, again, the more yogurt you use, the thicker your smoothie will be.  Feel free to add in more yogurt than this if you prefer thicker smoothies, however I find this amount to be just right for the perfect consistency.
  5. Honey, you can use honey that you squeeze from a bottle or set honey, I prefer set honey because it is easier for the blender to blend.

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Making your smoothie:

First off you want to pour your apple juice into your blender.  I’m using the Breville Blend Active which you can purchase here.  It’s a really affordable blender compared to others such as the NutriBullet and does the job perfectly.  It also comes with two 600ml bottles to carry your drinks around in, and you also blend them inside these bottles.

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After that add in your 2-3 tablespoons of natural yogurt.  As I mentioned previously, adjust this accordingly as to how thick you want your smoothie to be.  That’s what I really love about this smoothie, it’s really easy to alter to your tastes.

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Your smoothie is going to look really gross at the moment, as you can see in the picture above!  Try to stop yourself thinking about how gross it looks and remember it tastes amazing in the end when it’s all blended up and yummy!  You’re going to want to take your banana now and chop it into small slices – if you’re in a rush you can always just break it into chunks and throw it into the blender, the slices part isn’t necessary.

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Once all your banana is sliced (or broken) up, throw it into the blender to add to the ugly looking mixture in there.

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Next, you’re going to want to grab some handfuls of berries.  I buy mixed summer fruits that are frozen.  What I like is that with these packs, you can get all the different types of berries (strawberries, raspberry, blueberries, black currants…the list goes on!) and they’re frozen, which makes the smoothie nice and cold, perfect for summer.  Don’t worry though – if you can’t get frozen fruit, just use regular fruit and add in a few ice cubes, this should keep it nice and cold!

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Once your berries are in (I filled mine a little sparsely, don’t be worried to fill yours really full!), it’s time to add in the honey.  Now, honey is optional but I strongly recommend it.  It’s not going to detract from the health benefits of this smoothie too much, but the smoothie really tastes sour and tart if you don’t use honey.  The natural yogurt and berries are a little sour together and adding honey just makes it that bit tastier for you!  Of course, if you like a sour taste feel free to not go with honey, or substitute it for another sweetner.

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Excuse the stray berry and corner of teatowel in the above photo!  Add as much or as little honey as you like – as you can see, I add quite a bit because I really don’t like sour/tart tastes!  Once your honey is in, screw on the blender blades lid and shake your smoothie.  It’s really important to shake the smoothie so you get all the mixture dispersed throughout, making it easier to blend.

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Once you’ve shaken up your smoothie, you should be left with something a little more visually pleasing!  Put this on the blender and blend it for about one minute, which obviously depends on the speed and strength of your blender, so adjust accordingly.

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Take your smoothie off the blender, give it one last shake to make sure there’s no berries left unblended, then take off the black lid, exchange it for a green one (if you’re using the blender I’m using, If not then just store it in the fridge or pour into a glass and enjoy right away!) which will make it easier for pouring, then pop it into a glass!

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You could keep it in the bottle, which is especially convenient if you’re bringing this out somewhere (the gym, to school for your lunch), but I like to pour mine into a glass and garnish it with some berries, or a single strawberry!

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I hope you really enjoyed this post, and if you do make this smoothie don’t forget to tweet me a picture @ZalfieFanatic.  I’d love to hear from you!

Soph xx

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Camp NaNoWriMo 2016

Featured image from here.

Hi guys!

Today, I’m talking about Camp NaNoWriMo.  I’m sure lots of you are familiar with NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) which takes place in November each year and your aim is to write 50,000 words in a month.

Camp NaNo (I’m calling it this from now on because NaNoWriMo is just too long) runs every April & July.  You set yourself your own writing goal (Mine is 20,000 words) and try complete it in the month.  You can start entering your total word count on the 20th of the month.  I’m not going to be good at explaining it so just look here.  You get assigned/invited to join a cabin full of people and you all write alongside each other.  It also tracks your writing progress & creates stats for you.  I enter my word count every 500 or so words I write & it provides me with easy, up to date statistics for when I’m predicted to finish,  how many words I should write a day & also you can view your cabin’s stats as a whole to see when you are all going to finish.

This is my first year at doing Camp Nano – in fact, it’s my first year of anything NaNoWriMo.  I actually am really enjoying it, but it’s been running over my Easter break so far so I’ve had more than enough time to be writing, but my break finishes on Sunday and I’m back to school Monday so we’ll see how much time I get for writing then.  But I really want to get to 20,000 words – I’m currently on 8,103 which is the most I’ve ever written in a book.  I know that what I am writing won’t  be finished in 20,000 words and I’m hoping that having written a good chunk of it within a deadline will inspire me to write even when camp isn’t on, and possibly bring it into camp in July.

But, aside from all this today, I’m brining you my top five tips for writing at Camp NaNoWriMo, because, well, it can feel really hard when you loose faith for writing every couple of days or so.

  1. Loosing the will to write & having a lack of motivation:  This had happened to me on a good few occasions in the seven days I’ve been doing this.  You will sit at a computer (unless you’re writing by hand & counting up your words yourself, which I doubt you are, but if you are then congratulations to you, I couldn’t ever!!) all day long sometimes and do loads of writing and up your word count by thousands.  The next day though, writing is the last thing you want to do because you’ve been at your computer for hours and hours, day in day out.  My advice here is to have writing times, which is what I do.  I prefer usually to begin writing at about 7:30pm and if I can (ie its the weekend or holidays) I will sit into the early hours of the morning just writing.  If you can get at least an hour of writing in a day (depending how fast you type/come up with ideas, I do this quite quick and can usually do about 1,500 words in a little less than an hour) then you should be sorted.  If you’re still lacking in the motivation and just thinking about giving up, then follow NaNoWriMo word sprints on twitter which are designated times where loads of writing people come together and just write for say, three hours and see how much they can do – I’ve not yet participated in any but I have talked to people who have and they say they are very useful.
  2. Where you write matters:  I will always write sat down at my desk.  My desk is close to a window so having natural light really helps me.  If you can, writing at a desk is probably better than being slumped over your bed because you’ll probably end up deviating off task.  If you’re comfy (like me on my big comfy desk chair) and sat upright and at a desk with little distractions (my desk has my calendar which has my entire month (largely NaNo based) planned out on it and some pens & pencils, and some pictures of my friends – that’s  all) then you’ll be able to write more, or at least I can.
  3. Have somebody to proof read things for you and check out your work:  So long as you’re comfortable with sharing things from your work with people, then you should really try get people to read over your work.  I send a few chapters to my friend every so often and she’ll read over them and her eye catches mistakes I have missed.  Even if it’s just a minor spelling mistake or something doesn’t quite make sense or sounds a little rambly, she can tell me and I can correct it.  It’s also great to encourage you because your friend is most likely to tell you it’s good, unless you’ve got a horrible friend in which case probably don’t share it with them…
  4. Snacks & Drinks: You might want to neglect everything to do with yourself and just sit in your pyjamas writing and trying to get to your goal, but don’t.  Well, I’m not saying don’t sit in your pyjamas but don’t neglect yourself.  Grab yourself (or have someone else get you) a drink and snacks.  Preferably in bulk, so bring up two bottles of water or two cans of coke or whatever and lots of snacks.  I’d suggest you tried to keep it healthy with smoothies and fruit but really, that’s just not going to satisfy you.  Chocolate, crisps & things like that will, and I’m not telling you to do this, I’m trying to move you away from it but I’m not a shining example of it myself.  I’m trying to eat healthier though but I’ll save that for another day.  So yeah, drinks which keep you alert and awake (water helps your brain but if your tired, there’s caffeine in coke and coffee so I’ll let you make your decision) and fruit and veg…
  5. Planning: Make sure you have at least half a plan.  What’s super useful about Camp Nano is that it will tell you all your stats every time you update your word count.  I have a calender on the wall next to my desk where I have various days to write on my word count, the day I’m predicted to finish and they day I want to enter my word count.  Every time you update your stats change and it’s just good to have aplan to what you’ll do and when you’ll write.  Keep up with your stats people!

 

So yes, there you go, my five tips for Camp NaNoWriMo from a begginer who has never before touched the website in her life.  Don’t trust me.

And like I’ll say at the end of every post up until I get to 100 followers, I’m on 95 followers.  Seriously.  If like one person followed me today I’d be more than happy.  Thank you, so much to everyone who does follow me, I love you.  And like I said in my last post, I’ll be doing a 100 followers Q&A so feel free to leave me questions & stuff in the comments of this post even though I will do a more official post later.

Are any of you participating in Camp NaNoWriMo this year? If you are I’d love to hear from you in the comments or if you want to add me as a buddy on there, my username is the same as the title of my blog ‘Zalfie Fanatic’!

Bye!

Day Tripping In Ireland!

An overview of my past two days in Ireland with some cutsey pictures of me looking out to sea and all that jive. Just take a look, enjoy, and follow for more! ♥

Hi guys!

So today is THE day when I will start my two weeks of daily posting but I thought I’d do a quick post to tell you all what I’ve done over the past couple of days.  For one, I’ve found quite possibly my favourite place on earth (which is probably only nice when its sunny but hey ho!), and two I’ve probably been the most tired and have the most hurting feet I’ve had in a long time.  By the way, happy Easter guys♥!

SATURDAY:

On Saturday we ALL (Auntie, Uncle, Cousin uno, Cousin dos, Cousin tres, Moi, Brother, Father and Mother) went out to a beach called Dunmoran beach, and it was a bit misty, but all around quite pleasant.  It was really nice and rocky, we climbed the sand dunes, found a GORGEOUS massive fluffy caterpillar (yes, I stood and stroked it for like ten minutes, I like them, don’t judge, my Dad & Uncle didn’t let me take him home though, kind of depressed).

I found a campfire with logs to sit on and a pair of boxers (male underwear) strewn to the side.  Later on in the sand dunes I found a towel and FULL can of deodorant – I felt like some sort of a detective.  I named this “scene” my Sexual Campfire Scene.  Nobody else liked it as much as I did but hey ho!

Any ways, I’ll put in some pictures of that before I tell you about the derelict house ruins that we found something hilarious in!

Me Looking Out To Sea
Me Looking Out To Sea

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On the way to the second place (river thing) we found these gorgeous pretty much new born baby lambs!  I wanted to kidnap one but I wasn’t allowed which depressed me GREATLY!  Look at them, they look like little balls of cuteness!

Oh and this was the caterpillar we found!

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Look at him!   He’s just the nicest fluffy thingamabob!

Anyway after this we went up to this house ruin which was actually quite interesting and pretty much all the pictures from there have got my family’s face on and I’m not putting them on because THIS BLOG IS ANONYMOUS! Anyway, in one of the houses, either side of the fireplace, were two human poos!  It was actually disgusting.  Like they stunk and everything.  I do have a picture, but I will not subject you to the disgusting sight of what I saw.  EEEEWWW!

Anyway, after that we went to a place which has no name, but is a lovely river in the mountains by Dunmoran beach, incase you were interested!  It is now my favourite place on earth.  I paddled in the river because it was quite shallow in parts, and spent about 2 hours just sunbathing and looking at the sky!

Me when I forced my Dad to take an 'Artistic' picture of me for my blog.  Obviously in a river the only way to be artistic is to drop a stone in the river and capture the splash.  Note: this was re-taken roughly twenty times to get the right splash.
Me when I forced my Dad to take an ‘Artistic’ picture of me for my blog. Obviously in a river the only way to be artistic is to drop a stone in the river and capture the splash. Note: this was re-taken roughly twenty times to get the right splash.  I am very odd.

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This is me looking out to the river which was gorgeous.  And I often wear this jumper so in every picture, I am 77 girl.

So that was really REALLY nice.  Then we went home.  But yeah, really nice.

SUNDAY:

On Sunday, only my famalam left the house (Mama & Papa & Brother & Moi) and we climbed a mountain called Knocknarea (nock-nah-raye) and I got really quite tired.  But all was okay because I made it to the top and placed a rather large stone on the pile of stones that everyone has formed over time.  My Dad called that pile of stones the “nipple of Knocknarea” which was amsuing.  Tres amusant.  My french teacher would be proud.  Anyway, on the way back down I found a horse.  Well actually, I found two horses.

I would now like to say I rode down the mountainside on my horse, but that is not the case.   Instead, I fed the horse a lot of grass, and so did my brother.  My brother’s horse (which we found, it was NOT his) was called “my name is jeff” and yes, my brother is also obsessed with that phrase.  My horse was called Princess Alfanurph because I felt like calling her Princess Alfanurph.  Don’t ask me why, my mouth made an odd noise and out came such noise.

Anyway, here they are:

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I am the one feeding the horse and the horse nextdoor is my Bros horse.

Then we went to a beach called strandhill and found the nicest cafe which is now my most favourite cafe that do crepes ever called Mammy Jhonstons.  YUMMY!  This was my crepe – don’t tell me your not jealous:

This particular crepe had melted marshmellows, nutella and strawberries in it.  It was simply the best thing I've tasted EVER!  And in that pot is yes, icecream.
This particular crepe had melted marshmellows, nutella and strawberries in it. It was simply the best thing I’ve tasted EVER! And in that pot is yes, icecream.

So, clearly I’ve had a good time so far! Today we’re going to a beach again! And it’s warm.  All this is so very odd for Ireland.  If someone can tell me what the weather is like in England that would be good.

Also, you’d better like this blog post because uploading all those photos to wordpress took me like 5 hours overnight.  My auntie’s internet is shizzle.

I’m going to get ready now.  Bonsoir mon amigos! FRENCH AND SPANISH THERE!

Zalfie Fanatic Out