Friday, May 31, 2013

Wardrobe Wishlist: Drizzly Days

Ever since I've been in England, it's been drizzly/rainy about 70% of the time. Needless to say, I've been wishing I had a wardrobe that was both functional and cute in the rain, rather than just one or the other. I've been wearing the same black rain jacket every single day and I just wish I had a cute trench coat to fight off the rain because then I'd feel so much better about getting wet. Who cares about a little rain if I'm looking so cute? So that's why I was inspired to find an outfit that I loved that could survive the London weather. 

Everyone here is dressed so cute when they're on their way to work, in tights, dresses, and flats. I wish I had thought to bring my tights, but seeing as it was in the 80s when I left Ohio, I thought it would be summer weather here too. Boy was I wrong! But I've heard this is the coldest May they've had in awhile, so I don't feel too bad about my false assumptions. At least I remembered to bring my cute blue and pink polka dot umbrella! That handy little thing always makes me smile :)

It's supposed to be super sunny today, so I'm crossing my fingers that I can finally pull out a pair of shorts and leave the rain coat at home! Hopefully I can visit some markets and maybe go back to the Borough Market, which is pretty much my favorite place on earth. A sunny afternoon filled with tasting cheese and bread? Yes please!

Friday's Favorites

Wow, is it really Friday already? That means that I've been in London for almost two weeks now! Where does the time go? I've been having the most fantastic time here and I plan on stopping by some of the markets this weekend. Mmm just thinking about all of the food possibilities is making me so happy! Classes are going well, but it's so hard to sit down and write papers when this amazing city is at my fingertips. *sigh* Oh the life of a college student. As long as I get my homework done, I'll be able to explore as much as I want! Let's hope that plan works out...

1) Mmmm I love cupcakes with little surprised and this Toblerone cupcake looks like heaven. 

2) Oh, if I could only find my own Mr. Darcy while I'm in England...

3) I absolutely adore these elf slippers! I might try to make them next Christmas. Wouldn't that be fun?

4) These animal bracelets are beyond adorable. I love the elephant and giraffe the best!

5) How delicious does this blueberry pastry look? And it's so simple! I'm definitely going to have to try making this myself. 

6) There's an Up! inspired dessert? Can you get any more awesome?

7) If I could have this pink fridge, I'd be one happy girl. 

8) They have kitty tights! I'm obsessed with all things cat related, so you can only guess how excited I got when I saw these. 

9) Sparkly super hero mugs? Yeah, it's like they were made just for me :)

10) Look! A knitting cake! I so wish I could make one of these because it is the cutest cake ever. Cake and knitting...what more could a girl ask for?

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Kangaroo Burgers and a Full English Breakfast

There's no question that I absolutely love food, so you could say I was a bit excited to try out all the food England has to offer. And after only a week here, I am proud to report that I am obsessed with the delicious meals this country has to offer! While eating out tends to add up, if you look in the right places, you can find cheap, delicious meals to satisfy your food obsession :)

The first night here, I had a Cheese and Chutney sandwich from The Green. I had absolutely no idea what Chutney was, but it ended up being this jam type thing with yummy cheese on a sandwich, so I was one happy camper. First meal in London? Success!

Then, I knew I had to have some Fish 'N Chips as soon as I could, so when we all went to The Sherlock Holmes Pub for dinner one night, this meal was definitely a must for me. I wasn't sure how the mushed peas would turn out, but if you eat them warm, they're actually really good! The fries (called chips here) are thicker and have more potato than I'm used to, but they're still great with some fried fish and mashed peas. Overall, I was very happy with this meal. And the fact that it was a pub dedicated to Sherlock Holmes wasn't bad either!

Next, I went to The Borough Market and had an amazing time taking in all the food. Seriously, it was heaven! There were so many samples to try and I could not get enough of the cheeses. I swear I walked by stalls 4 or 5 times because the cheese samples were that good. At an exotic meet stall, I tried out the Kangaroo Burger, and it was so good! I had no idea what it would taste like or if it would be good at all, but I ended up loving it. There were so many different toppings on it (like caramelized onions, mayo, a fruity spread, and lettuce) that it all went together really well. I can't wait to go back and try some of their other exotic meat burgers!

On Sunday, since I'm in London, I knew it was time to have a real English Breakfast. There's a cute little place called Alford's Deli about five minutes from my flat, so me and four other people from the program went out Sunday morning to try out their Full English Breakfast. Good thing I like breakfast food, because it was huge and tasted delicious! I don't like mushrooms, so those stayed on the plate, but everything else was so good. The toast was nice and warm, the eggs were good, as were the beans, sausage, and bacon. I love beans, so when I saw that they were part of the breakfast, I was so excited. This definitely filled me up and my stomach was definitely warm and happy for the rest of the day. 

Last, but definitely not least, is a meal I picked up during my Cambridge visit on Saturday. Outside of King's College was a little market where they were selling all kinds of things from books and clothes, to candy and burgers. I decided to try out this meatball baguette and boy was it good. It was so big, warm, and just delicious. The baguette was probably the best part, though, because I love bread and the bread on this sandwich was amazing. Yeah for food markets!

Needless to say, I'm in heaven when it comes to food here. Hopefully I can find some delicious, cheap places during the rest of my stay here! I'll be sure to keep you all updated :)

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

To Do List: #15

#15: Travel to Europe

I know it's kind of obvious by now that I'm in England, but I never did an official to do list post about it! So here it is! Here are just a few pictures from the past week since I've been in Europe! It's still surreal to think that I'm living in London right now and will be fore the next four and a  half weeks. How did I get so lucky? 

I've been having an amazing time and adjusting to London life super quickly. There are cute little markets, cafes, and pubs everywhere that I don't know how I'll have enough to to even see it all! In my pictures, the first things I made sure to see where Platform 9 3/4 at King's Cross, The London Eye, Westminster Abbey, and Buckingham Palace. I can't wait to see even more of London and the country, and have the time of my life in this wonderful country!

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Fancy a Trip to Cambridge?

This past Saturday, a group of us took a train to Cambridge for the day and it was far from what I was expecting, but definitely in a good way! Cambridge is this beautiful place where it's not just one University, but made up of tons and tons of different colleges. The two main ones, King's College and Queen's College, are gorgeous and I actually got to go inside of King's College into the King's College Chapel for free because we stayed until 5:30 to watch the Choir Evensong (normally you have to pay). The service was gorgeous and the choir of boys sounded so cool. It was definitely an experience I won't forget. 

Aside from the colleges, there are tons of little shops and there are bikes EVERYWHERE. I made sure to get a postcard from the gift shop that not only showed the city, but also people on bikes. Because of the popularity of the bikes, there were these cute bike shops around that sold bikes and baskets for the bikes. It was just so darn cute and I could only imagine going to school there, living in these beautiful houses with gigantic green lawns, riding my bike around town and to class. *sigh* If only.

We found super adorable markets right outside of King's College and I had a delicious meatball baguette that was only 2.50 pounds! I absolutely love the food in England and I get so excited when I see something new and fun to try out. They also had some delicious looking desserts at one booth and I tried a little bit of a lemon tart slice that one of my friends got, and that was amazing too. I don't know what it is, but the food here just makes me so happy :)

Overall, this day trip was so much fun and I'm so happy I got to see such an amazing University. I had not known much about Cambridge, but I loved seeing the lifestyle there and how beautiful the buildings and colleges were. I'm not sure I'll be able to make it over to Oxford University too, but I've heard it's really pretty there as well. Being at Cambridge makes me want to transfer right away and spend the next two years relaxing in England at a beautiful college. A girl can dream, right? 

Monday, May 27, 2013

To Do List: #24

#24: Drink tea in England

This past Thursday, I was able to do something that I've only dreamed of doing: Have afternoon tea in London. The entire group I am in London with went to The Cadogan in Knightsbridge for a lovely afternoon of tea and some delicious pastries. 

For the tea, I had their special Chelsea Flower Blend and it was absolutely delicious. They use tea from Partridges and I was able to track down their store in London and buy some to bring back for my mom, because I know she'd just love it. WIth the tea, everyone got a Chelsea Bun and two Scones with clotted cream and either Strawberry jam or Lemon and Champaigne Jam. They were delicious!

As my first tea, I was definitely expecting more pastries and treats. I guess the professors booked the simplest tea, so we only got three tiny pastries. Last year they had done tea at Harrod's for the program, which I would have loved, but they decided to change it up this year. I definitely want to find another tea shop where I can get more food for my pound, including sandwiches, scones, cookies, and your other typical tea foods. Oh well. At least I got to enjoy some very delicious tea and got to know the other people in the program. The Cadogan is definitely a beautiful place and I'm so happy to have been able to have this experience!

Sunday, May 26, 2013

London Calling

Greetings from across the pond! That's right, I'm in London! I'm so sorry I've been MIA for a week now, but I've had non-stop days filled with exploring this amazing city and I haven't had a chance to catch my breath, let alone blog about this amazing experience. But now that my jam-packed tourist week is over and classes are starting this week, I will have a lot more time on my hands to explore while still being able to share all about my experiences.

London is by far my favorite place in the world and I can't wait to share about my time here with you guys. One week has already flown by, so hopefully these next five go by nice and slow so I can savor life here in London. I'm heading to Dublin, Ireland for the weekend in two weeks, which I am beyond excited for. I know this trip is going to change my life and give me so many memories I will cherish for a lifetime. I'm so lucky for being able to have this amazing opportunity of studying in London!

Well, I'm off to do some homework, but I hope you guys are having a fantastic Sunday! Stay tuned for more details about my life and trips as a Londoner :)

Friday, May 17, 2013

Travel Wishlist

1 // 2 // 3 // 4 // 5 // 6 // 7

Since I'm leaving on Sunday, all I've been thinking about is packing and what is going in my luggage. One thing I've never done before is go on a super long flight, so I have no idea what to have in my carry on! I'm going to have a 2 hour flight, and then a 7 hour flight to London, so I'm going to need a lot of things to keep me occupied during those long hours. 

I am absolutely in love with that Pan Am bag, and I wish I had one of my own! Sadly, I don't so I have to opt for a different bag to bring with me to stash all of my stuff in. I do, though, have a big comfy sweater that I definitely plan on bringing with me. It's not as gorgeous as the blue and white one from Modcloth, but it'll definitely do. And how cute is that owl contact lens case? I'll be rockin' my glasses for a majority of Sunday and Monday, which is perfectly fine with me because I love my glasses. Too bad my contacts will have to be sitting in the boring green and white cases I got from the eye doctor...

So overall, I hope that I'm set with my own carry on for my trip. I may not have the awesome things on my wishlist, but I'm pretty happy with what I do have. As long as I've got my Nook with me, I should be perfectly content for hours on end :)

Summer Wishlist

1 // 2 // 3 // 4 // 5 // 6 // 7 // 8 // 9

All I can think of is summer, even though technically it's still May. With this summer feeling comes with the craving for fun, bright colors. Not to mention anything and everything that has to do with owls or cupcakes! For my apartment next year, I'm looking for really fun rugs and I found that owl rug on Target's website and fell in love. Wouldn't it be awesome to have an owl rug in my bathroom?

I've always wanted an Instax camera as well and I think it would be perfect to record summer memories. And, of course, the bright yellow is a must for the brightness of summer. While I'm taking pictures, I can lay fun records on that pretty pink turntable. Now that sounds like the absolute perfect summer to me. 

Friday's Favorites

I leave for London in two days! Please excuse me while I got hyperventilate, and then dance around in joy. I can't believe my trip is so close. It seems like just yesterday I had 6 months ahead of me and now it's down to two short days. Crazy! I have so much to do before I leave, so today and tomorrow are definitely going to be pretty busy!

1) I am so in love with this oranges shirt. It'd be so fun to wear in the summertime. 

2) Mmmmm, these chocolate covered s'more pops could not look more delicious.

3) This floral iPhone case is so pretty!

4) 500 days of Summer is probably one of the best movies ever. 

5) Not only is the carpet of this living room super cool, but I also absolutely adore the bookcase. 

6) I don't think anything can be more adorable than this elephant sweater. I would love to own one!

7) The spines of these Harry Potter books are so cool! I've never seen anything like them, but it'd be so awesome to have a set of these on my own bookshelf. 

8) It's a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle sweater! I don't think you can get more awesome than that. 

9) Mmmm these nutella popsicles sound so good and so easy to make! The perfect frozen treat to have on a warm summer day. 

10) Hehe, this print describes my life perfectly :)

Thursday, May 16, 2013

What I've Been Watching...

It's no secret that I am a movie fanatic (hence my film studies minor), but being away at a school who's only movie theater closed down at the beginning of a year kind of makes it hard to see the new releases. So since I've been home, I've made sure to catch up on as many as I can. There have been a ton of great movies I've seen and some not so great movies, so I thought I'd share what I thought of them!

Iron Man 3
I have actually seen this movie twice now and it was even better the second time I saw it. Not only are the gadgets and action awesome, but the story was actually really intriguing and engaging, which has been lacking lately in action movies. And Robert Downey Jr is amazing as always. I loved every minute of this movie and the two hours just flew by. If you're an Iron Man and Avengers fan, you DEFINITELY have to see this! I would recommend watching Avengers again if you're fuzzy on what happened because that movie was much more relevant to this one that Iron Man 2 was. Either way, you're going to love it! *****5 stars*****

The Host
I absolutely loved this book, so I've been wanting to see this movie ever since it came out. I'm so happy to say that the movie did the book justice and was great! I am so in love with the guy who played Jared, as much as I loved the actual Jared in the book. And I thought they did a great job doing the whole Melanie was still in Wanda's head thing. Overall, I really enjoyed the movie and thought the actors were absolutely perfect for their parts. *****5 stars*****

Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters
I love movies and books that are remakes of fairytales and classics, and this version of Hansel and Gretel sounded so cool. Witch hunters who blew off the head of any witch they find? Sign me up! This one is definitely a lot more bloody and graphic than the fairytale, but I loved it. The action parts were really cool and I loved the characters of Hansel and Gretel all grown up. It was pretty short, only an hour and a half, but I felt like that was the perfect amount of time for the story. I loved this darker take on the fairytale and think any retelling fan with a darker taste would as well. *****5 stars*****

Beautiful Creatures
While I never read the book, I was really excited to see this movie because I know a bunch of people who read the book and loved it. I was definitely not expecting a movie that had it's quirky sides like this one did. I enjoyed the story until the very end, which my sister told me after I saw the movie was completely different from the book. So I don't know why they would change the end but I thought it was kind of weird. So aside from the ending, this movie was pretty enjoyable. If you read the book, you probably won't like it as much but it's a decent movie overall. ****4 stars****

Oz the Great and Powerful
I was beyond excited to see this movie because The Wizard of Oz is a classic and the story about the wizard sounded awesome. Sadly, it ended up being super boring and I was not at all a fan of James Franco playing a playboy Oz. I saw this one at midnight after I had already watched Iron Man 3, so I ended up falling asleep during the only interesting part, which was about an hour and a half into the movie. Apparently that part was good, but I had to sit through a pretty boring story to get to that point. And with a main character who I really wasn't a big fan of, this movie was not at all worth seeing in theaters. In the end, I would have been fine not seeing it at all. Stick with The Wizard of Oz or Wicked, because those stories are much, much better than this one. **2 stars**

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