Tuesday, 8 March 2016

February Wrap Up

I hope you all enjoyed my little poem last week! As promised, my somewhat more official wrap up:


This was the first book that I read this month. Best described as a series of vignettes on time, this book is the story of Einstein working out his theory of relativity (although rarely is this said explicitly). I'm actually going to review this book in a later post, so watch out for that!

With Valentine's just around the corner, I thought I'd pick up this, wrongly assuming it was a lovely little love story. It's actually a surprisingly heartfelt tale about two teenagers suffering from a new strain of TB. Whilst there was the typical YA love plot, there were also some rather toughing musings on life too. Lane and Sadie have their flaws - and parts of their love story I just didn't buy into - but all in all it was a nice, if sad, read.

Still riding the YA train, I picked up Tape - unaware that it was written by the poet PolarBear! A story about love, family, and finding yourself, this was another nice little read. I was left a little underwhelmed by certain aspects of the story (particularly involving Ameliah and the boy she likes) and the 'plot twist' at the end I wasn't totally convinced by (it would have been nice for me to have at least had the chance to guess at who the mysterious Joe was - as far as I was aware there weren't any hints but it wasn't a dramatic enough of a twist to be shocking). All in all, I did enjoy this book - I really enjoyed the way that time twisted when the tapes became involved.


I watched The Martian (late to the game, I know) this month and LOVED it! I actually laughed out loud and was genuinely drawn in by the story. I'd definitely recommend it.


I was really ill right in the middle of this month, so it's felt like a bit of an odd one for me. Most of the month was spent planning for South Africa (whilst you're reading this I'll be on a safari!) and I also squeezed in a trip to London to say goodbye to one of my very good friends who is off to live in Chile for a year!

That's about it for this week! Let me know if you've read any of the books I mentioned and what you thought of them!

Friday, 4 March 2016

#reviewsdaytuesday: B. Vibrant Shimmer - Lizzie

Today I thought I'd do a quick make-up review. I have been loving the Vibrant Eye Shimmers from B. recently, but this shade (Lizzie) has to be my favourite. I've worn it constantly for the past two months, so you can look at almost any photo to see how it appears on my eyes.

As you can see it is a beautiful irredescent pink champagne colour. The gold running through it catches the light beautifully and the pink shade is very natural. It's very 'no-make-up'.

The product is very creamy and easy to apply. I use a stubby brush because I don't like getting it under my nails. But if you were to have shorter nails using your fingers would be fine too.

Here's how it looks on my skin. As you can see it's very natural yet it still holds its pigment.

All in all I've been very pleased with this little product! At £6.99 for a pot it's slightly more than I would normally spend, but it's definitely been worth it!

B. is a cruelty free and vegan range, exclusive to Superdrug.

#reviewsdaytuesday: Einstein's Dreams by Alan Lightman

I picked up this book for free and it's been sitting on my shelves for a number of years. I'd actually already moved it to a pile to throw away when I heard Jen Campbell mention it in a video of hers. I trust Jen's judgement on books, so I moved it back into my to be read pile and finally got round to reading it in February.

Told in a series of time-bending vignettes, this is the story of Einstein figuring out his theory of relatively. Alan Lightman is a physicist, so it was interesting reading such a literary book from someone with a clear science background. The stories in this book are quaint. They all take place in a small German town and each have their own, very unique, sense of time. Sometimes time moves backwards, sometimes it speeds forwards, sometimes it doesn't move at all, and sometimes it is different for different people and places.

I've never read anything quite like this book. It's a really short read, only 179 pages, but it felt like a book that needed to be indulged in. I really enjoyed it and am very glad I didn't give it away before reading it! Poignant and surreal, I'd recommend this book to anyone interested in time or how we live/experience our lives.

Cooking For One: Beet and Mint Smoothie

After many months Cooking For One is back! I was a very lucky girl this Christmas and my family bought me a NutriBullet! Since then, I've been enjoying smoothie breakfasts almost everyday. They're relatively quick to make and I take them to work to drink. I've tried out a lot of recipes over the past two months, but this has to be one of my favourites.

1 Fresh Beetroot
1/4 Fennel Bulb
Handful Mint

Peel the beet and chop it and the fennel into blendable chunks. Add the mint (stalks and all). Fill to line with water. Blend. Add more water.

I love the colour of this smoothie and thanks to the sweetness of the best and fennel it tastes really good! The texture is a little thick/gritty, but adding the extra water at the end really helps to counteract it. Letting it settle overnight in the fridge helps too. Let me know if you try this by commenting below or tweeting me @VickiMaitland

Tuesday, 1 March 2016

February Was... : A Poem, with Pictures

February was planning.

It was booking things
and tight purse strings.
It was sickness.
It was swallowing snot in my sleep;
constricting throat, unable to speak.
It was Shoreditch.
With good friends and good food,
late nights and good booze.

It was coming fourth in a pub quiz
(three times in a row).
It was resolutions, stunted in growth,
by things I couldn't control:

February was quick quick slow.
The shortest month allowed to stretch it's legs
only to stub
its toe.

My garlic, chili, and thyme smoothie that I used to cure my cold.

Paid my respects in Brixton.

Some of my lovely friends and I at The Water Poet (great pub)


Two of my favourites

Scary - running through Shoreditch at midnight

The worlds most consistent pub quiz team (ironically taken on the night we lost our streak)

I hope you don't mind that this post was a little different to my others. I wrote this poem late Sunday night and I've tried not to edit it too much - the memories felt more organic this way. I'm off to South Africa on Friday, so the next three/four weeks of posts will include a more official monthly wrap-up, a smoothie recipe, a beauty highlight, and a book review. I don't except I'll have that much internet access whilst I'm out there because of where we're staying, but do expect lots of stories on my return!