Tuesday, 31 January 2017

the veggie burrito bowl you need to try

I'm trying to go vegetarian this year so the whole month of January was dedicated to discovering new recipes without meat. I never really used to eat red meat, only chicken and fish so the transition was fairly easy as meat never used to be a main component of my meals in the first place. Whenever I think of vegetarian foods the words "bland", "tasteless" and "flavourless" come into my mind buuuttt I found a burrito bowl recipe online that actually tastes decent. It's very filling and can easily be prepared in 40 minutes or less if you're super quick. You can add meat like some cubed chicken breast, if you want- I'd season it the same way as the sweet potatoes. I promise I tried my hardest to make it look as aesthetically pleasing as I could but that obviously didn't happen.
What you need: um well I didn't really use specific measurements and just eyeballed everything sooo

Main dish:
A cup of white rice (or brown rice if you got money)
A tin of beans
One sweet potato
Drizzle of olive oil
Half a red pepper
Coriander (optional)

Dressing: the dressing does mean that it is no longer a vegan dish as it uses mayo but you can use a 'free from' alternative
Mayonnaise *i just used however much I wanted*
1/2 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp chilli powder
1/2 tsp of les echalotes flakes (I don't know what they are called in english)
1/4 tsp cumin
Lemon juice
Pinch of salt and pepper

  1.  Cook the rice according to the packet instructions and ALWAYS WASH YOUR RICE ya nasty 
  2. Peel the sweet potato and then cut it into chunks then coat it with 3 tsp of olive oil and then add salt, pepper, paprika and chilli powder to season it. Put onto tray and then into the oven for 15 minutes.
  3. Whilst the potatoes are cooking, start chopping up the pepper and then add it into the tray and cook for another 15 minutes. (cook potato, take out, add pepper, cook again) Don't forget to actually take them out and not burn them :)))))
  4. Add the mayo into a bowl and put the same seasonings you used for the sweet potato but also add some cumin and lemon juice. This turns the sauce into a weird peachy colour that looks like vomit (yay) but tastes vvvv good.
  5. Warm up the beans with their salt water in the microwave until they're soft and mushy inside. Try not to cut your finger on the tin lid like I did #PROTIP
  6. Now you can start assembling the burrito bowl. Rice first, sweet potato and pepper second, add the beans and then add the sauce over it alongside some coriander if you want. 
This is the basic of basic combinations. The best thing about this is that you can completely tailor it to what you want and have different ingredients: you can add pumpkin seeds, avocado and other greens but ingredients were limited in the household lool (if you know, you know). If you do make this -pls do- then let me know on twitter or something because it would make me happy to see that someone actually trusts my culinary judgement ;)

Have you tried a burrito bowl before?

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Tuesday, 24 January 2017

time is just a concept

*below is a collection of my weird evening thoughts that I've decided to compile for you entertainment*

okay so I've actually reached my mid-2017 goal of 250 bloglovin followers which is shocking yet intriguing as whenever bloglovin sends me an email saying 'monochrome daisies has a new follower!', my mind tends to drift of into thoughts regarding what actually motivated each person to press follow. It's all weird to think about- someone would have stumbled on your blog, skim read a post and thought "Does this person have the bloglovin button thing? yes? great, I might as well follow them." and then in a few seconds an email comes through with the notification and you're just reading it and then all the thoughts I mentioned above simultaneously pop up in your mind. no? Just think about it..what really gets someone to hit follow, I can imagine that they must really like your blog to commit to something as big as following someone. Alright, the word 'following' doesn't sound like it has much significance anymore because of it's exploitation by social media but let me define that real quick skkrrrrt skrr:
  1. 1
    a body of supporters or admirers.

oh dear, now that sounds very narcissistic doesn't it..."admirers" What is there to admire about me/my blog? Unless you aspire to reach the level of which my life is disintegrating then that's definitely understandable. WHy am I so self-deprecating, I sometimes feel like such an ungrateful little prick for complaining about the little things like how Galaxy never putting enough salt in their salted caramel chocolate but I have a point, it's salted caramel for a reason- I need high levels of NaCl otherwise it isn't really salted caramel chocolate but more like plain caramel with a few covalently bonded ions and that just tastes like despair, deception and disappointment.

Well Instagram has started offering their live video features for us peasants too which is fantastic because yay desegregation! I think I've live streamed once and then got tired of watching my face and speaking to my one watcher (who I forced to watch) I think I'm an interesting person and live streaming can actually help me connect to whoever wants to watch so I'll probably have to give it a second shot sometime soon. It'll most likely consist of me saying I look like a pile of dust, throwing out gang signs (jk) and talking aimlessly at the camera whilst being very conscious of the "cool" people who might be watching. Have I sold my soul myself to you yet? Come on, just imagine my 4am epiphany post but in action, it'll just be me talking about life things. It will be fun ;) Damn I should become a salesperson I would sell hella shit. You obviously don't have to watch if you don't want to, I'll try and live stream everyday after school but we all know I fear commitment so we'll see how that goes ;)

I thought I'd let you know that I'm transitioning to vegetarianism, it's gone much smoother than I expected especially coming from an Asian/African family where meat is such a fundamental component of every meal. The first few weeks were mainly filled with a lot of meat substitutes like Quorn but now I've started to branch out into some 'proper' vegetarian meals, in factttt I made a burrito bowl last night and it was surprisingly good although I did have a horror story. Basically I passed out whilst trying to open a tin of Mexican spiced beans. yeaaaah, that happened. I used the tin opener and then managed to cut my finger really deeply with the tin lid, lost so much blood and fainted. Worst thing is, I didn't even get to use the beans as they were fully covered in blood HOW GREAT. Luckily I had an extra tin (which my mum opened because I can no longer be trusted due to my lack of culinary expertise) and despite the uh medical issues that i faced along the way, it was sooo good!

Do any of my readers watch Onision on youtube? I haaatteee beauty gurus/storytime click baiters and supposedly tumblr fashion youtubers. But onion boy is my breath of fresh air in the terribly cliched world of youtube, a lot of people see him as a bit of a dick but he's just misunderstood. He has a dark sense of humour -which is the best type of humour- and he just says things like it is, no waffle, hence why I just find him so admirable...and he's pretty good looking too. I binge watched the majority of his videos on Sunday to avoid my History essay as much as I could (it worked btw) and if you read into his story and past then you'll be very hooked. He also makes some good music too, it's just a piano piece he created for a video but it's impressive- you can listen to it here if ye want.

Ahhh I nearly forgot to tell you that I'm going to my first 'proper' blog event this Wednesday (!!!) I was nominated something (I forgot to promote it all and get people to vote so I just told the lady to take me off the list ha wow) which is weird because I don't think my blog is worthy of that title considering all the other well-established fashion bloggers there are. It's taking place in a Hilton hotel just 10 minutes away from where I live so it's very convenient (thankfully) I still don't have anything to wear as it's cocktail dress and I'm pretty sure vans and a pair of cigarette trousers would cut it...I'm still so shook as to how I got invited to this event that's going to be full of other bloggers and youtubers and creators that have thousands more followers than I do, much better photos and 'funner' posts- it's safe to say that I'm going to stick out like a sore thumb. I'll probably feel pressured to blog about it sooo yeah.

I've just read over this post and I'm confused as to why it turned out to be like this as I'm pretty sure it started of as a simple thanks for 250 bloglovin but clearly diverged into something much more, uh, complex. Nevertheless I hope you liked reading through my stream of consciousness because that's always fun isn't it? Also, I never really realised how much I use rhetorical questions in my writing, it's just a way to convey sarcasm, not me trying to show off any literary abilities I may hone.

Any thoughts from ungodly hours that you want to share? Comment them down below.

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ps- I'm sorry for this post lacking any substance to it, I have some 'better' ones coming up soon!

Friday, 20 January 2017

ootd | parisienne?

I'm not really one for really polished fashion photos, even when in Paris (supposedly the most fashionable city in the world) I still wanted my outfit shots to look undone and casual, just as I like :) Ngl half of this outfit is borrowed, the sweatshirt is my dads and the jacket is my sisters...I hardly wear my own clothes anymore. It was a pretty cold day, we went to Sacre Coure/Montmartre, the Notre Dame cathedral then to the Jardin du Luxembourg and later just walked around the whole area (and got lost so we ended up taking a cab) The only pair of shoes I took to France with me were my vans old skool's as they're my most versatile shoe and they went well with the whole outfit I guess. My trousers are from the kids section at zara, they were £20 and I wear them so often. They're very warm and I just like the looser fit of them, they're a refreshing change from the basic skinny jeans I usually wear. Hoop earrings have become a regular accessory, I was also wearing my silver septum ring but my mum forced me to take it out for the photos because the light reflected off them badly and made it look like I had something up my nose lol thanks mum. This outfit is definitely going to be repeated in the future!

sweatshirt- polo ralph lauren (my dad has had it longer than I've been around!)
trousers- zara
jacket- north face
shoes- vans old skool
What are your thoughts on this outfit?

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Tuesday, 10 January 2017

a realisation

Hand on heart, (some) these photos weren't meant to be posey at all- I managed to capture them whilst I was actually laughing. I have no idea as to what I was laughing at but it seems to have been pretty funny.

So, I seemed to have had a moment where all the unclarity and haziness in my mind just lifted. The quote "realising stuff" has never made so much sense in my life. One usually does have such thoughts and mini epiphanies at 4am in the morning, I can't lie but after battling months of this mental ambiguity it was just like everything calmed down, those torrential rains slowing down into a rhythmic pitter patter and violent waves settling to smooth, lightly crashing waves caressing the cliffside. Oh so poetic. After experiencing months of A-levels and finally becoming a cog in the machine (with the machine being sixth form) immense amounts of pressure has been exerted onto me. I no longer read books for leisure but instead, to be able to have enough knowledge on the plot, characters and themes in order to write a substantial essay. I no longer research aspects of history that genuinely interest me, only those that interest my courses exam board. I no longer learn spanish vocabulary for the sake of satisfying my weird hispanophile tendencies, but to satisfy my spanish exam paper. You get the gist. But, why must we do things solely for the sake of school? Why do our institutions demand we remove anything that interests us that isn't remotely related to your course? All these things we genuinely want to do are so crucial when it comes to self-growth and self-love and surely learning the lesson of those two is far more important than learning about the first battle of St Albans or the structure of a triglyceride. We need to start doing things for ourselves and not for others, more specifically our exam boards. Every lesson I attend usually includes the phrase "the exam board demands you say ____" or "examiners will mark you up if ____ is included in your answer" We need to create things, not just utilise things being created for us.

Writing is a thing I enjoy so much, whether that be writing about history or something like an outfit on here, it has always been something that I have done and will continue to do. Write something. Anything. Free write if you're stuck, even if you keep repeating "I don't know what to write" ten times you will eventually come up with something. This is something my year 7-8 English teacher taught me and I vividly remember sitting in his lesson and him dedicating 15 minutes to this magical art of 'free writing'. Although a class of thirty eleven year olds moaned at him, we still did it and it worked. After a while you can just hear the disparity of each individuals brain just 'click' and the sound of frantic scribbling arises shortly after, with people racing to scrawl their ideas down before they "got away". Fun fact: this blog was created by 12 y/o me with the intention of free-writing here instead of having to handwrite it out because of sheer laziness and it eventually spindled into a beauty blog.

It's crucial to find your passion and stick to it like water molecules stick to their fellow water molecules, cohere to it just like they do. (a bit of biological/chemical background just to make the analogy work: well water molecules hydrogen bond with each other, the delta positive hydrogen atoms form hydrogen bonds with the delta negative oxygen atoms of other water molecules and as water is one of the most abundant molecules in the world, one can only imagine how vast these h-bonds are. and vastness = strength.) You don't have to be good at something to enjoy it. I'm definitely not the best writer nor the most well articulated there is either, yet I still do it. You don't have to be a skilled photographer who understands depth of field of aperture either in order to enjoy it. If you have the slightest of interest in something you might as well try it and if you love it then continue doing it until you can't take it no more (here's the catch, if you love something so much, you will never get sick of it.)

mid-laughter...this is terrifying
And now this is when I am going to address this 'thing' that has been flashing in my mind. I don't want to write about makeup. In fact I never liked writing about makeup. A conversation with one of my old friends a few weeks ago did inspire this, he mentioned that although my blog is great (thanks mate!) it's slightly generic and not unique to me, and I agree. I solely did it [wrote beauty posts] to "please" the blogging community. Generic content = more exposure. You're probably thinking I'm not a genuine blogger for only blogging about things for more 'views and comments' but when you're starting out as a newly teen blogger, you're still vulnerable, you still have to ease yourself in by just writing about all you've ever been exposed to and at the time I created my blog it was the during the pinnacle of beauty blogs. You're also probably thinking "she doesn't even go here" "you're not even a beauty blogger"- and you're right, I'm not. But the way in which I've been writing the majority of my posts in the previous years has been modified and repackaged (yes I did just quote the function of the golgi apparatus) into a mould that is what "fits" the blogger ideal. From now on, I am going to write about whatever I want without the thought of pleasing the blogging community shifting into my mind. I am going to create things that I want to create, whether that be: blog posts, photography, short-films or illustrations. I will do what I want to do. Although I may lose followers or readers, I really don't care anymore. I'm sick of writing fake content that isn't representative of my full capability because believe it or not, there's a lot of intellect in here that just isn't able to be displayed through any medium because of expectations and premeditated judgements. I believe that when I truly begin to publish content that I like, my blog will continue to flourish even more. Not because I expect more people to read, share and follow my blog but because my space will be a space that is truly evocative of me as an individual and the age old quote of "be yourself" will be properly enforced and will shine through.

And when this really happens, perhaps I will really reach the level of happiness displayed in the first few photos.

How long winded.

ps: just because I say I want my blog to be a reflection of me, it doesn't mean that beauty and fashion posts aren't going to be on here. I still enjoy writing about both, but perhaps in a way that is more 'me'. I still love writing about fashion and I am looking to incorporate more posts regarding my personal style- it's the typical beauty/makeup posts I'm not really into but as I said, if I have a product I've been hyping up or a new makeup routine, I will share it of course. Don't think that just because my blog is "changing" it won't include things I previously write about. This isn't a total reformation, just a few reforms ;)

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Friday, 6 January 2017

an idiot in pAris

You probably know that I went to Paris for a week so here are 'some' photos from my trip. I've decided to make this into a travel guide too, Paris is such a big city with so many things to explore I found that a lot of the travel guides available on the internet are a bit too flowery and not really that realistic so hopefully mine will be lit :)

In terms of transport, the metro is the way forward. On the first day we bought a 'carnet' which is a booklet of 10 metro tickets for €14.50 buuuuuuttt a lot of people in Paris don't even pay for the metro and just hop over barriers. I am going to say it with my chest, I always jumped over barriers or went in with other people because metro tickets are expensive boooooiiiii. People in Paris will literally hold the gate open for you and you either have to jump over or like crawl under the barrier, it's legit so much more chill there in terms of transport regulations. We didn't encounter any transport control (if they even have any) but if you do, just make sure that before you start hopping over barriers but at least ONE ticket and keep it with you at all time so whenever they do come and check, you have something to give them as "proof" #joannethescammer #ipromisei'mnotthisillegal. 

To navigate around the city via metro is very straightforward and simple too, the first day was hectic but as long as you have the app 'city mapper' then you're all set. If you don't have your roaming on so you can't use your data (like myself) I just loaded the directions at the hotel or wherever I had wifi, and screenshotted them.

Day 1 we had to go and visit the Eiffel tower as it's pretty much the main landmark of Paris, if not France. We got off at Trocadero metro stop, walked a few minutes and boom bow, the eiffel tower was literally just there. You never realise just how big it is until you're standing in front of it ;) It's massive, the place is very good for photos as it provides a panoramic view of the eiffel tower and everything around it. We walked down and crossed a bridge (no idea what it's called) and then you can get right under it, we were going to go up it but the queues were sooo long. We then went back up to Trocadero to find somewhere to eat do not make the same mistake as us we went to Cafe Kleber which was one of those reaaaally classy and posh restaurants and ended up spending nearly €100 on food buuuut it was really nice. I also managed to break one of their fancy glasses and everyone turned around and looked at me probably thinking "what a peasant" but in french ofc. We then walked down Avenue Kleber which took us to the Arc de Triumph. This is where my dad managed to meet a Moroccan tour bus driver and we got onto it for the full tour for free, perks of being Moroccan oi oi. That basically took us around the majority of the landmarks and dropped us of at 'Concorde' We walked down through the christmas markets and avenue champs elysees and took the metro home that day.
Day 2 was one of the most unorganised and mishmashed ones, we went to Sacre Couer/Montmartre first and went in (it's free entry) and then we walked down a whole lot of stairs. Our next stop was to the Notre Dame, beware because there are multiple notre dame's- the one you probably know is San Michel. It took sooo long to get there because we just got off at the first Notre Dame stop we knew (rookie mistake) but we got there eventually. From there we walked to the Jardin du Luxembourg but we didn't get to spend much time there as it closes at 4:30pm :( but from what I briefly saw, it was really picturesque and laid-back. 

Day 3 was planned out by yours truly. We went to the louvre first but of course my plans failed because the museum is shut on Tuesdays :))))) It's actually free to visit if you're under 18 or if you're under 26 and are an EU resident. We just walked around the museum grounds and then walked down all the way to the arc du triomphe again in attempt to actually go up it but again, I forgot to bring ID to prove I'm an EU resident + that I'm under 18 sooo basically all my plans went to dust yay me. We just stayed under the arc and ate there before taking the metro back to the hotel, we were only out for a few hours that day. moral of the story: take ID with you everywhere :) 
Day 4 was the last day in Paris, it was a day we used to catch up on landmarks that we may have missed as a result of my very unorganised self. First thing we did was go back to the arc du triumph (with ID this time) and we went up it, the queue looked long but it was quite quick and we got to the desk in 15 mins so don't let the long lines put you off. It's also free for under 18's and under 26 y/o living in the EU, to go up. There are 284 stairs to climb up which is something to take into consideration but it's worth it as the view is insane. Afterwards we took the metro to travel near the eiffel tower/the seine so we could get onto a tour boat! This took us along all the more unknown landmarks. We ended up getting off at the Louvre again and then to the Burren Columns which are only a few minutes walk away, they were really quirky and much more modern and ahh so cute. 

All in all, I loved my trip to Paris and i would definitely recommend visiting the city (as you can probably imagine) even if it's only for a few days. I hope this travel guide/diary was of some use to you- if you have any more questions about where you should visit in the city etc then comment and I'll let you know :)))


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