Wednesday, 31 December 2014

INSTAGRAM YEARLY ROUND UP


I can't believe that's another year over! It's not been the most exciting of years to be honest - other than moving London way! Having been travelling the year before, Daley and I have kind of just spent the year trying to get back a decent amount of money after spending it all in America (which moving my job initially to Oxford Street meant it did not go so well). We also spent time trying to figure out what we want to do with our lives. But, we still don't have a clue, and we've decided that we're okay with that. We are definitely not ready to buy a house or decide on careers. We're just happy to plod along and what will be, will be! So in fitting with this, and because I never do, this year I won't be making any resolution, but will just be taking each day as it comes!
I've put together an Instagram round up, which you will see is mostly just cats, food and fashion! I only started this account in February but have managed to take a fair few hundred photos since then! So check them out and if you don't follow me on Instagram already (if not, why not?!) then click here or find me at @roseandweston!


February: Valentines Day Roses, Kitty, Cakes At Patisserie Valerie, At Zaks In Norwich With Mum For My Birthday Meal, Testing Canapes Made By Daley At The Lost And Found In Birmingham, Taking My Krispy Kreme Virginity


March: A Starter Portion Of The Mixed Grill At The Hen And Chickens In Birmingham, Kitty, Koala Slippers, FWIS, Reuben Sandwich At Boston Tea Party In Birmingham, Prawn Kare Lomen At Wagamama


April: Kitty, Seafood Platter At Chameleon In Birmingham, One Of My Favourite Outfits Of 2014, Thai Food From The Thailand In Norwich, Monochrome Haul, Mine And My Mums First Trip To Yo Sushi Together


May: My Favourite Cath Kidston Backpack, Kitty, Cocktails With My Friend Liz, Lunch Outside On A Day Out In Solihull, Prawn Tapas Dish At Toreros in Norwich, Kitty


June: The Perfect Combination Of An ASOS Delivery And Kitty, Lola's Cupcakes In Topshop Oxford Street, Taking My Five Guys Virginity, Liberty London, Realising How Fat Kitty Had Got, Duck Ramen At Wagamama


July: Breakfast At Yorks In Birmingham, Kitty, A Trip To Thrigby Zoo, One Of My Favourite Outfits of 2014, Lunch With A Friend At No. 33 Cafe In Norwich, A Night Out With A Friend At The Jekyll And Hyde In Birmingham


August: Prawn Kare Lomen At Wagamama When My Sister Came To Visit From Holland, A Friends Birthday BBQ, Kitty, Outfit Photo, Toppoki Restaurant In Birmingham For Our 7 Year Anniversary, Amazing Roast Dinner Cooked By Daley At The Lost And Found In Birmingham


September: Exploring Notting Hill, Lunch In A London Park, Kitty Hiding In The Duvet, Kitty, Exploring London Streets, Pizza at Franco Manca In Brixton


October: Food Blogging At Wahaca In London, Outfit Photo While Exploring London Streets, Kitty, Every Day Work Outfit, Purchases Made At Paxton and Whitfield, My Two Favourites


November: Daley Eating Ramen At Sushi No Mai In Watford, Christmas Lights At House Of Fraser Oxford Street, Eating A German Doughnut From The Birmingham Christmas Market, Baking The Christmas Cake with Dad, One Of My favourite Outfits Of 2014, A Trip To Birmingham Christmas Market


December: Christmas Tree And Kitty, Exploring Covent Garden, Flowers From My Manager When I Left My Job As Manager At Yumi, Nandos For Daleys Birthday, Christmas Outfit Photo, The Best Christmas Dinner Ever

Hope you've enjoyed my years round up! Whatever you're doing this evening, I hope you have a fun night! Mine will be spent with my Kitty and a Kopparberg! See you in the New Year!

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Monday, 22 December 2014

MONOCHROME MONDAY | LAST MINUTE GIFT GUIDE



Wishlist: Cat Purse, Glitter Nail Polish, Stack Rings, Card Case, Marble Phone Case, Faux Fur Scarf, Glitter Socks

Just a quick guide for any one doing some last minute shopping or needing to fill a stocking! Still 2 days left to get it all done - plenty of time and with special delivery you can still receive online orders too! So, in all seriousness, get going! And don't forget the gift wrap!

This is my last post before Christmas! Hope you all have a fun and festive day! MERRY CHRISTMAS to you all!

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Sunday, 21 December 2014

CHRISTMAS JUMPER




It may not be National Christmas Jumper Day, but being less than a week until Christmas *SQUEALS LIKE A 5 YEAR OLD!* I've been wearing all things festive! As should all of you out there! Glitter, sequins, tartan and novelty knits! This is actually a jumper from last years Topshop sale I got for a bargain £8 down from £30! I like that it's not too in your face festive, with the silver glitter pairing well with the grey of the sweater material, so would be perfect for the office or just if you're someone like me who doesn't particularly like anything too in your face. Christmas is, however, just about the only time of year I'll happily wear any kind of colour, so a touch of red and forest green in the form of this beautiful mohair coat finished off this look in perfect Christmas fashion.






Are you all ready for Christmas? I finally got my last presents today and also managed to book a last minute rental car home. Any one wanting to get a cat (or any pet actually) that they won't want to leave when going away for Christmas, remember that they will of course be absolutely terrified on the underground or train! And hiring a car around the festive period is CRAZY expensive! Haha! Anyway, I'm all ready to go now - just 3 days of work to go! Any one else travelling back Christmas Eve? Got your Christmas music ready for the journey? Let me know in the comments!



Outfit: Mohair Coat: Topshop, Jumper: Topshop, Belt: Vintage, Bag: Primark, Jeans: Topshop, Converse: Office

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Friday, 19 December 2014

EXPLORING LONDON | BYRON



The only three things I seem to eat - ramen noodles, curry and a good ol' burger. So having done a good search around for ramen already, it was time to hit London for some burgers. Anyone who's had even a little wander around London will have seen a Byron restaurant. I was a little worried it was going to be just a nicer looking version of a Burger King, with cheap tasting burgers, but I still had to try it out for myself. We went late afternoon around 4pm, and was surprised to see how busy it was for the time of day, but managed to get a great table on the raised level looking over the restaurant. I loved that they had little hidden cows all the restaurant, and managed to find a good few while waiting for our meal. The restaurant itself was a nicely spaced so you didn't feel like you were sitting on top of the next table, and I liked that you could see right in to the kitchen with out the place being too noisy or smelly! Obviously a bit of delicious burger smell is a bonus, but you don't want to be choking from it!




Right, on to the food then. Another menu, another time spent with Daley getting annoyed by the amount of time it takes me to choose what I want from it! Still not being able to narrow it down to just one though, I managed to persuade Daley to share each burger half and half! So, we eventually went for the Chilli and the Smoky Burgers. Firstly, the Smoky burger (above) was topped with smoky cheese, crispy onions, bacon, pickles and a smoky BBQ sauce. Apart from the absence of Chilli (made up for in the other burger!) and perhaps some pulled pork, these are my favourite burger toppings, so was obviously verrrrry pleased with this choice! One bad point - I couldn't really taste the "smokiness" I was expecting from the sauce and cheese. Now to the Chilli burger, thankfully this time the taste of the sauce of chipotle mayo was much clearer, and we were also pleasantly surprised that the added chillies were actually quite spicy! Being spice fanatics, Daley and I are usually let down by the "spicy" choices on the menu, so to find that the chillies on our burger had a good heat to them was a real plus. So to combine the two burgers in to one, would provide us with pretty much the perfect toppings for a burger! The burger patties themselves were cooked perfectly medium, and although not the absolute most flavoursome I've ever taste, with the addition of the toppings on both burgers we scoffed them down very happily! To finish, we topped it all off with a Knickerbocker Glory, larvley!




I hope that as Byron continues to expand the burgers stay the same. We don't need anymore McDonald's now, do we! Have you ever been to Byron before? Do you know any burger restaurants you think I should test out? Let me know in the comments!

We visited the Central St. Giles Byron Restaurant, but to find other locations and the menu, click here.

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Monday, 15 December 2014

MONOCHROME MONDAY | CHRISTMAS CLOTHING GIFT GUIDE


How else to do a monochrome Christmas clothing guide than by choosing nearly all things glitter and sequin? I like that around the festive period, you can look like a disco ball and still be considered normal! Contrasting the textures of dressy sequins with leather and casual chunky knits makes glittery Christmas looks feel so much more expensive - cos gurl don't wanna look cheap now! I especially love the heavily embellished hem skirt by Topshop, it would just go perfectly with the silver Vans and black slogan sweatshirt under an oversized tweed coat, yes? I definitely think so!


Wishlist: Lurex Crop Top, Lurex Bomber Jacket, Metallic Vans Trainers, Embellished Hem Skirt, Marc By Marc Jacobs Watch, Sequin Trousers, Sparkle Texture Cami, Black Slogan Jumper, Faux Pearl Ring, Penguin Jumper

Sorry about cutting this post short and the pixelated quality of some of the images - I have now been away 19 hours and all the nice items I could find online were rubbish quality! 10 days til Christmas though! YIPEEEE! I hope my gift guide helps at least one of you. What's your favourite piece from the guide?

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Thursday, 11 December 2014

CHRISTMAS BURGUNDY



The day we shot these photos was the coldest day of the year so far. I was bloody freezing! Last minute, we decided to head in to central to top up on some festive vibes at Covent Garden but didn't head in until the sun was just starting to set - adding to the dropping temperature! I still haven't dug out the hat and gloves yet, so it's probably my own fault that my finger tips felt numb until the next day. Anyway, knowing we were going to go see some Christmas sights I decided to wear my favourite winter colour, burgundy! Inspired by the ASOS trend of Colour Control, I focused on burgundy as my main colour but of course couldn't help but add in some touches of grey. And no Christmas look is complete with out a little bit of check, so added this in as an in between layer to keep me just a teeny bit warmer!




Once we got to Covent Garden, it was heaving with Christmas shoppers and tourists and was actually a bit overwhelmingly busy! Also SantaCon was in full swing in the area, meaning that there were even more people around than usual - it was so funny seeing all the people dressed as Santa though, and added to the Christmas-y feeling! I didn't really get a chance to take any proper photos when we were there, but of course a few quick ones made it to my instagram! I haven't been feeling as festive as early this year, but this evening definitely helped! Plus my day off today is going to involve a bit of Christmas shopping followed by some classic Christmas films, so will soon be in crazy Christmas overdrive and I can't wait!





What are you doing to feel festive? Do you have a favourite colour to wear around Christmas? And what do you think of this outfit? Let me know in the comments!

Outfit: Dress: Topshop (similar here), Shirt: Topman, Coat: Topshop, Scarf: Forever 21, Bag: Primark, Boots: Century 21, Lipstick: Topshop

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Monday, 8 December 2014

MONOCHROME MONDAY | HOME ACCESSORIES CHRISTMAS GIFT GUIDE



Wishlist: Striped Cushion, White Plant Pots, Triangle Cushion, Ombre Carafe, Long Geometric Cushion, Decorative Painted Bowl, Black Geometric Candle, Texture Spot Cushion, Tall Cylindrical Vase, Ombre Knit Cushion, Geometric Storage Tins, Silver Desk Lamp

So, I basically want my home to be like my wardrobe - monochrome! IKEA is obviously the best shop on the planet, and I could happily visit every weekend if my bank balance and other half allowed! Even though their products are crazy cheap, buying a trolley full of crazy cheap still amounts to a lot! I always feel like a bit grown up when I ask for home accessories for Christmas, it makes me realise that maybe I'm not the 10 year old that asks for only toys on their list. They're also good investment pieces if you choose wisely, as they're on display and used more than most pieces of clothing you own! For the slightly more luxury pieces than IKEA, John Lewis is THE ONE for home accessories! I feel like if I buy items from here, they will last a life time! Or I'll keep telling myself that after I splurged on a single cushion for £35! What was I thinking... well actually, I know what I was thinking - this cushion is amazingggg!
My favourite items of this gift guide? Firstly, the ombre knit cushion from BHS, which I saw it in the window display of their Oxford Street store. I know it would look just perfect in my little monochrome house! Because it is knitted, it looks as though it's been hand made - but by a really talented, trendy weaver rather than your Granny! And I love hand made (or at least hand made looking) items, they just feel a bit more special to gift them as presents. Secondly is the silver desk lamp from IKEA. Do I really need to say more than it's chrome, only £15 and looks like the Pixar lamp?! No, I do not.

See anything that takes your fancy for Christmas on this home accessories gift guide? Or even anything you want to buy for your home right now? I sure know I'll be taking a trip to IKEA in the next week!

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Saturday, 6 December 2014

EXPLORING LONDON | RODELLS



I was a little skeptical about this place, as when I walked past this place on my way to Watford Junction on moving first to the area I was sure it was another closed down venue. The outside appears a little unloved and the place was shut up mid afternoon, but to my surprise on my way home in the evening the place was bustling with people. I decided to read up on the place online, and with the website under maintenance, turned to the food bloggers and writers for what to expect. And you know what, my initial thoughts were completely wrong; although I wasn't the only one! Reading these reviews, others found that it "defies initial impressions" and even queries whether it's "Watford's Best?". I was definitely intrigued!
We had decided that when our next days off matched up, we would take a visit to Rodells, and so did just the other day. As soon as you walk through the door the smell is just amazing, making me immediately excited to browse what was on offer. What we loved about the menu was that it is changed single every day, for lunch and for dinner. Our menu, shown below, is December fourth's offerings. The staff described the menu as a variety of World Foods, with tastes and ideas being picked up from where ever the head chef Mario had visited. The mix is quite eclectic, which as someone who finds narrowing down a menu difficult, made choosing quite a tough decision! But with our love chorizo and the confident description "voted no. 1 in the world" we went for the Callos Madrilenos and Malay Beef Rendang.


Now, what we didn't realise (even though it stated on the menu!) was that these came with a choice of rice, noodles or mash, and in a rash decision chose noodles in the Callos Madrilenos and rice with the Rendang. Complete wrong decision with the noodles! The dish would have been just so much nicer and suited to go with mash! I also found the the side portions were a tad too big in comparison to the main part of the dish, but that might just be me being greedy! That said, both dishes still tasted delicious. Although the Callos Madrilenos (just pictured in first photo) and noodles were an odd combination, taking away the noodles the dish was full of flavour, and the chorizo and pork was cooked as perfect as could be! Our favourite by far, though, was definitely the Malay Beef Rendang. I seriously need to learn how to describe flavours better because I'm basically at a loss at describing just how amazing this was and how tender the beef was too! But for now, until I learn to describe better, I suggest you take a trip 15 minutes from Euston on the train out to this place and discover it for yourself! Look past Rodell's appearance and you'll find seriously good, fresh cooking here, well worth the trip for any Londoners or people of Watford and it's surrounding areas!


To visit Rodell's website, click here.

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Thursday, 4 December 2014

TWEED AND TARTAN




So, since we last spoke a couple things have happened. I have left my job and got a new one much closer to home, which makes me super happy as not only will I be saving about £8 a day in travel (£40 a week more to spend on clothes, right?), it will take me about 45 minutes less each way to get to and from work! I'm so happy about this as I was in complete overdrive in my last job. I finished work at 6, got home about 7.45 because of them almost daily London Midland train delays, ate dinner, completed things I'd taken home from work to finish, and then it was bed time. I had no idea when I was supposed to fit in any me time, social time or Christmas shopping whatsoever, as my days off were just spent sleeping! Although I'm still going to be working my arse off in my new job, the hours are much better and like I said the travel time has been cut hugely, so I am very excited and happy to be getting more time for myself!
Another thing that's happened that I'm really excited about is one of my best friends is moving down to live with us for a few weeks (lets hope that turns in to months (read: forever)), which just before Christmas will be so fun! Daley absolutely hates Christmas, so in previous years I have had no one to watch films, Christmas shop and wrap presents with, so having her here to stay will be super duper fun!


Anyway, on to the outfit and my amazinggg long lost tweed trousers from New Look! I have had these since before I started Uni and never really got in to wearing them until recently. Even though they do appear a bit baggy in the photos, they are actually just perfect with the right leg fit, just high enough on the waist, and long enough too as I often find trousers way too short for my very disproportionate leg length! The tweed material alongside the tailored cut makes them the perfect work trouser, but with the tie waist and paired with this burn out tartan tee gives a more relaxed day off vibe while still making it look like you made an effort. These photos were taken a couple of weeks ago now, and it makes me so sad how much more cold it's got just in them 2 weeks. This coat is pretty thin to be honest and my little arms can't bare the thought of wearing this until about March time now! Noooo! Although I'm now more excited than ever to wear woolies and winter coats, I do really love this coat and so will be missed in the months to come!





Are any of you excited to be dressing for winter? And have you had any exciting things been happening? I'd love to know! Ps. Sorry about the grainy quality of the photos here! Think even 3pm is now too dark to take photos!

Outfit: Fedora: Topshop, Trench Coat: Primark, T-shirt: Topshop, Trousers: New Look, Ankle Boots: Century 21

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Monday, 24 November 2014

MONOCHROME MONDAY | ASOS ACCESSORIES CHRISTMAS GIFT GUIDE



Wishlist: Silver Backpack, Matte Lipstick, Eye Liner, Embellished Heel Ankle Boots, Leather Strap Watch, Faux Fur Stole, Eye Clutch, Silver Brogues, Silver Block Heels, Speckle Nail Polish, Embellished Clutch

I'm sure you've already been bombarded with hundreds of gift guides from other bloggers, but I just couldn't help myself! I've combined it with my usual Monochrome Monday post, and am starting off my Christmas gift guide series with an accessories post! I didn't actually intend it to be all ASOS, but when narrowing all the pieces down I'd found searching online, it just happened that all my chosen pieces could be purchased from here!
My favourites of the guide? Firstly the perspex eye clutch bag! How absolutely adorable is this! Although I'm not one for flashing all my belongings for everyone to see, I'm still loving this! I'd perhaps pop every thing inside the bag in an additional little purse so you can still see the cute little eye design with out advertising to the world your iPhone and Mulberry purse (not that I have either of these!). Next, the cut out silver brogues by New Look. I'd seen some gorgeous similar ones by Hobbs but as per usual, my pocket change can't quite reach to this. I am loving all silver accessories at the moment, so of course I need to add these shoes to my collection. I like that the soles and laces are black too as I've seen other similar brogues but with brown rubber soles - no thank you! And finally, the Daniel Wellington watch. Who doesn't lust over one of these? Since the first mass of bloggers were gifted these from the company, my heart has been stolen! I have huuugely hinted at Daley that I NEED one of these, so let's hope for his sake that he's been listening!

What's your favourite piece here? Have you spotted anything on my gift guide that you'll be adding to your wish list? Keep your eye out next Monday for my next gift guide!

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Friday, 21 November 2014

EXPLORING LONDON | RAMEN AND NOODLE SOUP



The Japanese Canteen: Being a huge Wagamama fan and walking past this place every morning and evening, I knew that I was eventually going to end up taking a detour inside one day. And I'm so glad I did! Noodles, ramen and spice are three of my favourite things together; so choosing from their very well priced menu proved quite difficult with all the varieties on offer, especially with the added choice of broth bases! I ended up going for the Duck Ramen with a coconut broth base, whilst the boyfriend went for Chicken Ramen with the Japanese soy broth base. Of course I also taste his, and can confirm both were subtly delicious! I did end up adding quite a lot of soy and chilli oil to mine, but this was down to personal taste rather than bad seasoning by the chefs! Although I didn't think it was quite as good as Wagamama, for the price and speed of service I would definitely recommend for any noodle fan out there! Click here to visit The Japanese Canteen website.




Pho: I heard about this place from a Lily Melrose tweet a while back just as I had moved to London. Fast-forward 2 months and I finally got round to visiting! On the way there we walked past The Breakfast Club's usual queue, and although we were tempted to eat here, the queue was just too long for our hungry bellies! We got in to Pho just before the rush thankfully and got to spread out on a 4 person table - about 10 minutes later they were turning people away! The restaurant is laid out really oddly in a U shape, which I felt made it much harder for the waitress who had to keep checking back and forth between each side and we ended up having to wait ages to order our food. However, the wait was worth it when our food arrived!
We ordered the Nem Nướng which is pork and lemongrass meatballs; to me they sounded quite boring but I'm glad my other half persuaded me as they were so full of flavour. Who would have know adding lemongrass would make pork mince taste so much more interesting! We both could have eaten a lot more of these! But next came our Pho's! Oh man, these were so delicious! We both went for the hot and spicy versions with Daley choosing Bún Gà Huế (chicken) and me choosing Bún Tôm Huế (tiger prawns). The pho base was actually quite sweet but completely worked, but they also give you a side plate of corriader, lime, chilli and other kinds of leaves, so to season to your own taste. I added them all, plus the chilli oil, chilli sauce, fish sauce and a mystery brown sauce that was placed on every table. To be honest, the pho didn't need any of these extra flavourings as it was seasoned perfectly but I'll add anything for extra spice! Comparing to Wagamama again, I'm afraid Pho's soup bases made Wagamama's taste like water in comparison. The only bad point was the oiliness of the surface, which you can probably see from the photos, but other than this, I would definitely, definitely recommend for any one who doesn't mind pushing their way past Oxford Circus crowds (or finding any of the many others dotted about London)! Click here to visit the Pho website.


Sushi-No-Mai: What a hidden gem this is! If it wasn't for me reading many food blogs I'd have never come across this place. Situated on the second floor of Watford Market (who knew markets had more than one floor?!), this little place is a real surprise! Now, I say market, but with the recent renovation of Watford Market, it doesn't feel like your average market stall. It's super clean, has doors and windows and plenty of space to sit inside and out. I've read that the head chef here used to work as master sushi maker in Selfridges Oxford Street, so I visited with high expectations and certainly didn't disappoint! We thought that there would only be sushi on offer but were very pleasantly surprised to find that there was a full menu of ramen, katsu curry and more! Of course with my love of noodle soups, I chose the seafood ramen. Usually just a handful of bean sprouts are thrown in, so the seaweed and other leaves was also a nice addition. My other half wasn't actually as keen on the base as me, but I loved the deep, slightly salty flavour - it just meant I didn't have to add nearly as much soy as usual! Again, I'm sorry to Wagamamas, but Sushi-No-Mai's soup flavour just out did Wagamama's. Anyone visiting Watford late week when the market is open, I would definitely recommend a visit here - but get there early, the seats fill up and they have a serve until they sell out policy which is usually before 3pm! Click here to read about Sushi-No-Mai.


Shoryu Ramen: Saving the best until last. I headed here after a days work with a friend who also moved down from Birmingham. Knowing my love of asian food, she suggested this place after reading good reviews. Oh boy, were them reviews true! After a short wait, we were shown to a table. Everything was quite squashed in but with some plum wine in hand, and some piping hot, juicy prawn tempura to start, we soon forgot about the space issue. The menu was quite hard to read I felt, but the waiter was quick to suggest a dish for both of us. And he definitely chose well! I got a spicy minced pork ramen, topped with pickles, egg and seaweed which with the addition of ground sesame seed, all worked together amazingly. I'm not great at explaining flavours but it was rich, but not overpowering. Spicy, but subtle. This ramen blew Wagamama's out of the park, and just pipped Pho to the post too. Love ramen? Then Shoryu Ramen is the one to go to! Click here to visit the Shoryu Ramen website.

Are you a big ramen and noodle soup fan? Have you been to any of these restaurants? Or do you know anywhere even better for ramen?

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