29th January 2018 by - No comments

Ever since I lived and studied in Amherst, Massachusetts I have been interested in poetry.

My love of sonnets and poems actually goes way back to when I studied A-level English Literature. Then my time in Amherst, and visiting the home of Emily Dickinson reawakened my love yet again.

Poems are the most wonderful, romantic, selection of words and phrases. So beautifully put together.

So when I was asked to review a book of poems about butterflies I just had to find out more.

The Book –

Papiliones by Jonathan Bradley is a collection of poems inspired by butterflies, as well as the stories behind their often unusual and exotic names, and colour photographs.

In this charming collection, the poems evoke both the colourful lives of these lovely insects and the emotions that they arouse in us.

Each poem is unique, frequently inspired by the unusual scientific names given to them, which are often poetic in themselves. The poems lead the reader on a journey of discovery of these delicate creatures, each poem and each butterfly a new delight.

Profit from the sale of this edition of Papiliones will be donated to the Butterfly Conservation charity.

Verdict –

I have always loved butterflies. I love all wildlife, but the ones that visit my garden are extra special, they are my friends. Robins, ladybirds and butterflies.

This book is not only filled with beautiful poetry, it is very educational.

It is a breathe of fresh air. It isn’t a novel, it’s not a biography, but it is filled with wonderful facts about the most wonderous beautiful insects. The poetry is lovely and totally understandable.

I look forward to spotting the various species of butterflies that will visit my garden in the Springtime.

A lovely gift for anyone who likes poetry & nature.

Available on Amazon uk now.

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24th January 2018 by - No comments

I am a self proclaimed seed-a-holic! I have always loved seeds – pumpkin, sunflower, chia. Way before the whole seed fashion came about, I would choose pumpkin seeds as my go to snack at anytime of the day.

My addiction continues to this day, I can honestly get through packets and packets of pumpkin seeds. My favourites are the ones with the shell on, and I love snacking on them.

The nutritional benefits of seeds and grains are endless. Filled with fibre and vitamins, they are essential for our bodies.

The only thing which I find so annoying with seed and grains is getting them from the packet to my bowl or in to the pot without spilling them everywhere. But one of my favourite brands ‘Andean Sol’ who is a specialist in healthy eating, has come up with the perfect solution.

The Products –

Andean Sol Chia Seeds range

Available in two variants – Organic Black Chia and Organic White Chia. Like our Organic Royal Quinoa range, they are also available in resealable spout pouches.

  • High in Omega-3
  • High in Fibre
  • High in Plant Protein
  • High in Iron
  • Gluten Free
  • Non GMO

Andean Sol Royal Quinoa range

Available in two variants – Organic White Royal Quinoa and Organic Tricolour Royal Quinoa in handy resealable spout pouches.

  • High in fibre
  • Source of Plant Protein
  • Low GI
  • High in Iron
  • Gluten Free
  • Non GMO

Verdict – 

I loved both these products immensely! Not only because of the super handy pouch that they come in, but that is a very added bonus, but because the quality of the seeds is 100%.

So easy to store, so easy to dispense. Thank you Andean Sol!

The benefits of Chia & Quinoa are endless.

I add Chia seeds to my porridge, granola, salads, pasta salads and I love adding a sprinkle to my smoothies! They are tasteless but add so much goodness. Watch my blog and Instagram accounts for lots of fun recipes coming soon using these cute seeds.

Quinoa is such a versatile grain. As a side dish with fish, meats. Perfectly filling and light as a replacement for oats in porridge. Royal Quinoa is a premium, larger variety of quinoa that cooks up fluffier and tastes nuttier.

Watch this space for some super yummy, healthy and easy recipes using these lovely seeds! xxx

In the meantime get hold of these cool punches via the Andean Sol website below or on Ocado!

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21st January 2018 by - No comments

One of my New Years resolutions this year was to read more classics. I think its mainly because I am so in love with watching period dramas lately, I wish I was born in the late 1800’s. But as we all know, the book is always better than the movie, so I just had to read these amazing classic books which have made such a name for themselves in modern society.

The first of my reads had to be ‘Howards End,’ ever since it was aired on television just before Christmas it has been my favourite programme, so much so that I bought the series of iTunes and have been watching it over and over again.

It’s just such a wonderful story.  Each time I watch it I discover something new about the characters, the story or the scenery.

So I was very excited to read the book itself.

The Book –

When a brief romance between Helen Schlegel and Paul Wilcox ends badly, their two very different families are brought into collision. The liberal, intellectual Schlegels, who had hoped never to see the capitalist, pragmatic Wilcoxes again, learn that Paul’s family are moving from their country estate – Howards End – to a flat just across the road.

As the lives of the Schlegels and the Wilcoxes become increasingly entangled, Helen befriends Leonard Bast, a man of lower social status. His presence further inflames the families’ political and cultural differences, which are brought to a head in a fatal confrontation at Howards End.

Considered by some to be E. M. Forster’s finest work Howard’s End blends humour and lyricism in this classic exploration of British class and character.

Edward Morgan Forster was an English novelist and short story writer. Many of his novels examined class difference and hypocrisy in early 20th-century British society, notably A Room with a View(1908), Howards End (1910), and A Passage to India (1924), which brought him his greatest success.

Howards Ends was first published in 1910, about social interactions and relationships in turn-of-the-century England. Howards End is considered by some to be Forster’s masterpiece and in 1998, the Modern Library ranked Howards End 38th on its list of the 100 best English language novels of the 20th Century.

Verdict –

I read the book over one wintery cold weekend. Tucked cosily under my favourite cashmere blanket with temperatures outside well under zero, I couldn’t imagine anything more enjoyable.

The first thing I have to say is the book is just as good as the mini series, I loved the mini series and the book just as much. There are so many similarities between the two. The script is almost identical.

I am looking forward to reading the other great classics by E M Forster, and I plan to watch Howards End the movie starring Antony Hopkins and Helena Bonham Carter.

So many things to look forward to… xxx

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