A Day Trip to Lille!

I’m really lucky that my boyfriend works for a ferry company, so he gets a few free trips across for two people a year, we have been to Bruges and Brussels on day trips and this time we  headed to Lille!

Lots of beer!

Lots of beer!

I’ve been to Lille before for a weekend trip, so it was nice to go back again. However, on our way to Lille we stopped of in Ploegsteert, Belgium (as you do!) and went to an amazing beer shop! The shop was called Vanueem and there are so many different types of beer it is insane, we spent a lot of money!

After we had popped into Ploegsteert we headed to Lille. We parked in EuraLille and wandered around the shops, stopping in a kind of fast food pasta shop for some lunch. Being the one out of the two of us that can speak a little bit of French (and I really mean in a little bit) it was my job to order the lunch, at which point I probably insulted the whole of France with my awful attempt at their language!

After our lunch we went into the city centre to see the beautiful sites of Lille.

There are so many beautiful building in Lille, and we were really lucky with the weather, so we could sit outside and soak up the sun and look at all the wonderful buildings.

Fountains!

Fountains!

As we were only on a day trip we weren’t able to see a lot of the sights and it was very much a quick tour.

After our walk around and chilling out next a lovely fountain we decided that it would be a good idea to relax even more and have a beer 🙂

We stopped off at a bar and each had a Kawk beer in the awesome glass. There are so many different bars and restaurant in Lille, as there are in a lot of French towns and cities, the food all looked wonderful but as many non-French speaking visitors to France we found that we were given as little interaction as possible!

As we always do when we go to France we stopped off in a hypermarket and do some food and wine shopping.

In EuraLille the is a Carrefour where we stocked up on all of our generic French food and drink.

Horse

Horse

This time, however, we got something a bit different.

The horse meat scandal in the UK sparked a lot of discussion about how good horse is for you, so my boyfriend though he would find out.

He bought a horse steak in France and a beef steak from Sainsburys back home and did a ‘scientific experiment’

His findings? They are both tasty!

I would recommend that you visit Lille, and if you get the chance, go for a weekend, there is a lot to see and do. I barely touched the surface on this trip.

Vegas Baby!!

Flights booked!!

For someone who has no money I really have managed to go on a lot of holidays this year. I’ve been surfing (kind of!), I’ve been to Glastonbury and now I’m going to Vegas.

I’m not going until the 13th September, but as I was reminded today, that is less than 60 days, I’m rather excited.

I’ve got a lot of ideas planned for what I want to do:

  1. Helicopter trip to the Grand Canyon
  2. Bellagio fountains
  3. Bellagio Buffet
  4. Shooting range
  5. Bar crawl up and down the strip
  6. Bar crawl up and down Downtown
  7. MGM Grand pool party
  8. Gambling
  9. Partying
  10. Shows

Now I am aware that there is a hell of a lot to do in Vegas, has anyone been and has any Vegas tips for me?

Also, flights are booked, not actually booked any accommodation yet, where would you say is a good, cheap hotel in Vegas to stay?

I would love to hear from you, just drop a comment below 🙂

Glastonbury 2013

Sorry if there is a lack of sense in this post, I’ve not slept much in the last week 🙂

Now I was one of the lucky lot to get a ticket to this years Glastonbury Festival and like most I was one of the many thousands that got to see The Rolling Stones.

GLASTOOOOO!

GLASTOOOOO!

But the wonderful thing about Glastonbury is that unlike a lot of the festival around there are so many other things to do as well as watching big name bands.

The only other big festival I’ve been to was Reading in 2010 which was amazing, I was lucky enough to see one of my favourite bands Blink 182 who I had always wanted to see live. However, after going to Glasto in 2011 I realised how much better a festival can be.

After camping in 2011 on Pennard Hill it was quite a bit different this time as we were staying in the camper-van field staying in a trailer tent, which in festival standards is pretty much luxury! We entered (and exited) the site right by the circus field which meant the every day we caught a hell of a lot of random acts although there are so many people performing on random little stages of just as they are walking along, I think it is impossible to be bored.

The food at Glastonbury is brilliant and Tor Rugby club did some awesome grub at a great price 😀

Tor Rugby Club

Tor Rugby Club

The first band I saw was Haim on the Pyramid stage, the bassist was a little bit quirky (I think that’s the best way to describe her!) but they were brilliant. I was going to list all the acts I saw but I really would be here for hours.

I saw all three Pyramid headliners, I had heard that The Arctic Monkeys are a bit disappointing live as they don’t really have much of a stage presences, but I pleasantly surprised.

Then we have The Rolling Stones, I was really interested in seeing how people would react to them so I’ve read a few reviews and comments on their performance and I’m not surprised that quite a lot of people weren’t impressed. All I can say to them is that the atmosphere at the pyramid stage was awesome and, even if on TV it didn’t sound amazing and they all looked old, I think everyone there watching it enjoyed it all.

Mumford & Sons were the perfect end to the festival. After a chilled out Sunday in the sunshine they really sent everyone off in a brilliant mood, especially with the collaboration for the last song.

All in all it was an amazing week 🙂

I got to see world famous bands and people I’d never heard of. One of which was Penguin Cafe, who were brilliant and I recommend everyone goes to see them!

I really could bore you for hours by telling you how awesome my week was, but I won’t. All I will say is, if you can, go to Glastonbury, (the toilets aren’t that bad I promise!)

Pyramid Phoenix

Pyramid Phoenix

A Surfing Trip to Remember

It’s been a while, I know, and I had promised myself that I would keep my  blog up  to date!

I was planning to write a post two weeks ago as it was going to be just after my awesome surfing trip with my friends, however, I hit a bit of a snag!

It was a long old drive to Newquay (luckily I wasn’t the one driving!), of all the places to go in England it must be one of the ones that takes to longest to get to from Kent. After a pretty non-eventful trip we arrived at Reef Surf Lodge where we were staying. I really would recommend this for any budding surfers out there, it really is brilliant value for money and it is close enough to the main goings on, but not so close that you will be kept up all night listening to drunkards!

Anyway! Where was I? We went out on the first night, had plenty of drinks and giggles, but otherwise a relativity uneventful time. Our surfing lesson the next day wasn’t until about 3 o’clock so we had plenty of time in the morning to shop and explore what Newquay has to offer.

Newquay is a lovely town, it’s what I imagine the seaside town I live in would have been like in its heyday, just without the surfing. After writing a postcard to my Gran we headed off to meet our instructor, don our wetsuits, pick up a board and look awesome on the waves!

So after I struggled to get my wetsuit on and complained the my board was too heavy we arrived at the beach. Our showed us the moves and into the water we went!

It was quite a windy day, not brilliant for beginners, our instructor said.

5 minutes later!

In my case , it was so windy my board had blown off the water as I had tried to get on it and while trying to protect my face it caught my thumb and dislocated it.

F%$k*n& h£ll!

I won’t bore you with all the details so here is a summary!

  • Three shots of morphine
  • A bit of gas and air
  • A trip in an ambulance
  • A few hours in The Royal Cornwall Hospital A&E
  • Two x-rays
  • Another half a canister of gas and air
  • A massive syringe of local anaesthetic
  • Loads of pain
  • Three doctors
  • A trainee nurse
  • A lot of pulling
  • Two more x-rays
  • A plaster cast

Needless to say I didn’t surf again that weekend.

I had the cast on for a week, then my thumb strapped up for another 5 days and my first physio session on Monday and I am happy to say that although I still can’t move my thumb properly it is healing very well.

I’ll leave you with some pictures!

My messed up thumb

My messed up thumb – Me still in my wetsuit!

My messed up thumb

My messed up thumb

Gas and air

Gas and air – AKA My new best friend

The Lovely Newquay Beach

The Lovely Newquay Beach

 

A day out in London

Of course that’s how it begins: a harmless fairy tale to pass the hours

The beauty of living on the Kent coast is that I have the capital city an hour away and France about the same. It does feel strange that I can just pop to another county for the day, but it is great to be able to stock up on wine!

On Saturday 11th May, however, it wasn’t a trip to the continent, but a trip to London. Every few months my mum, my aunt and I go up to London for the day, do a bit of shopping or visit a museum and go to the theatre. Over the last year or so we’ve been to see Matilda, Julius Caesar and Hedda Gabler. All three of which were stunning performances, Matilda was hilarious and very intelligently written, the RSC production of Julius Caesar was such a brilliant take on the classic tale and Hedda Gabler was an emotional show with such a fabulous performance by Sheridan Smith.

This time we were luck enough to have tickets to see the legendary Judi Dench in Peter and Alice.

Peter and Alice

Peter and Alice

I have always loved the theatre, it is so much more magical than TV shows or films. The ability to make a story come to life on stage has always fascinated me and I’ve been part of drama groups before, acting, writing and directing, as well as doing drama and theatre studies A level. I don’t know whether this adds to or takes something away from my theatre trips, I find myself analysing what I am seeing, looking out for gobos and dramatic irony! Anyway, I digress…

Peter and Alice tells the story of how the inspiration for Peter Pan meets the woman behind Alice in Wonderland. The wonderful Ben Whishaw plays Peter Llewelyn Davies and portrayed his eagerness to learn from Judi Dench’s Alice Liddell Hargreaves and his hunger for understanding amazingly well. His character’s development throughout the play is so heartbreaking that you really do feel the anger of a little boy who had to grow up too quickly, instead of Peter Pan, the boy who never grew up. But he is living in his shadow.

Judi Dench’s Alice was much the same, now an old woman, Alice is no longer living in Wonderland, but can barely afford to heat her home. She is now not seen as Alice in Wonderland, but just as another ageing member of society.

The stage changes dynamic as Peter and Alice are joined on stage by the memories of the writers that immortalised them, and the characters they became. Stories of their childhood are told, precious memories they hold are revealed and dark times in their lives are exposed.

Peter and Alice stage

Peter and Alice Set

The other cast members; Nicholas Farrell (Lewis Carroll), Derek Riddle (James Barrie), Olly Alexander (Peter Pan), Ruby Bentall (Alice in Wonderland) and Stefano Braschi (various) were all marvellous. Alexander and Bentall in particular added a much-needed comedy aspect to the production.

I’d love to say, as well, that the set design was, utterly fabulous, perfectly capturing Wonderland and Neverland at the same time.

Peter and Alice is not a happy tale, but it is not completely devastating either. I don’t want to ruin it for anyone, and I would tell anyone who has the chance to see it to take that opportunity if they can, it is such a wonderful production, it’s a shame it is not on for longer.

Ps. I don’t own the pictures 😉

Drowning in Cake

Coffee and Pecan Cake

Coffee and Pecan Cake

Last week it was my Dad’s birthday, the big 60.

And, as his doting youngest daughter, I made him a birthday cake, which was super tasty (even if I say so myself!)

It was meant to be coffee and walnut but I used pecans instead, which are just as tasty, although I think they might not be as healthy as walnuts, but if you can’t over indulge on a birthday, when can you?

Now this was just the tip of the iceberg.
One cake is easy, nothing to complain about, especially when you have a Kenwood Chef (he is my baby!). My mission however was to make cupcakes for my Dad’s birthday party, about 100 cupcakes, and about the same amount of mini pizzas.
Not as easy as making one cake.

Still, I love a baking challenge, I just pretend I’m on The Great British Bake Off. So, with my copy of Mary Berry’s Baking Bible at hand I set to work. To be fair, the recipe I chose was Mary Berry’s all in one cupcake recipe so it wasn’t as taxing as it could have been and it still makes yummy cupcakes.

After baking on Thursday night, Friday night and icing them all on Saturday (while also making mini pizzas) my mission was complete.
Cupcakes = 95
Mini pizzas = about 70 (some were lost in action!)

I will leave you with pictures of my cupcake journey!

Mary Berry's Baking Bible

Mary Berry’s Baking Bible
aka
Awesome book!

Cake Ingredients

Cake Time!

Cupcake cases

Crap cupcake cases from Sainsbury’s

Double Yolker

Double Yolker, I had about 4 of these, what are the chances!

First lot ready

First lot ready

First cupcakes cooked

First cupcakes cooked

95 Cupcakes cooked

95 Cupcakes cooked!

Cupcakes iced and waiting to be eaten

Cupcakes iced and waiting to be eaten – it looks like it says ‘160’, my Dad isn’t that old!

Hopefully I won’t have to do this again for a while, it’s hard work making cakes, but it is fun eating them!

Sunshine!

The sun has been out, oh happy days!

Saturday, I dug out the sunglasses, put my dress on (with tights of course, I’m not insane) left my coat at home and set off into the sunshine. Well kind of, I went to Sainsbury’s, then drove for 40 mins to a house party. But still, I was kind of outside, well the sun was shining through my windscreen and the car was hot.

The party was awesome, I drank loads and ate some amazing food, had my back clicked and hardly slept. Then I had to wake up early to drive the BF back home because he wanted to watch the F1, but with a quick stop off in McDonald’s to grab some perfect hangover food and hopefully win on the Monopoly, all we got was a sodding drink no car or phone 😦

Then I spent the rest of the day chilling out and shopping with my mum. I got some beautiful draws from The Merchant Chandler then reorganised my dressing table, it’s a glamorous life I lead.

It’s my dad’s birthday on Tuesday and his party on the 27th. I’ve been tasked on making about 70 cupcakes and 70 mini pizzas, I’m going to be stressed, and fat!

S’laters!

Welcome!

Hi, I’m Alice!

Alice

In wonderland

You might have guessed with the name of the blog, but then again, you never know!

I would like to welcome you to my crazy ramblings, which I will try to keep updated (promise)! I don’t have a plan to talk about anything specific but I’ll do my best to keep it interesting, to be honest I expect I’ll just start talking about food, it is after all the best thing in the world!

I’d love to hear from anyone reading my blog so comment away, don’t be shy.

Alice 😀