June Favourites

I don’t know about you, but I always look forward to the end of the month because I’m excited to see what YouTubers and other bloggers have been loving during the month. For me, I think it’s a brilliant way to discover new entertainment and products, and so I thought I’d join the club and share a few of my favourite things of the month.

Essano Rosehip Moisturiser
I have been through a lot of face moisturisers during my time and I think I have finally found the perfect one for me. I have normal skin, but it is sensitive so I do struggle to find a moisturiser which won’t cause me to feel uncomfortable or itchy. The Essano moisturiser is the perfect consistency and it’s not too thick or thin either, thus it is easy to smooth all over your face.
A bonus is that it is affordable, organic and produced in NZ, so you can’t not support your homegrown products!

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Muji Pens
Not gonna lie, I could dedicate a whole post to Muji but I think I’ll just settle with the pens being featured on this June favourites for the time being. If I’m being honest, I was initially very reluctant to shop at Muji because I am one of those people who are fully dedicated to Kikki K, and will basically only get my stationery from there. However, at the same time, I am also someone who will only use fine tip pens to write because I just think they make your handwriting look so much prettier and neater. My friend told me about how Muji sold really fine tip pens, so as you can imagine, I was super keen to try them out.
They are so easy to write with as they flow so nicely as you move your hand across the page. The only con I’d say is that they are quite inky, so they do show through if you write on the back of a thin piece of paper. Perhaps avoid writing on the back of the page unless you’re using a thick piece of paper. Otherwise if you’re like me and love fine tip pens, go grab a couple from Muji! They’re really cheap too and you can also get ink refills, so you don’t have to worry about having to buy a whole new pen when the ink runs out!

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Forever Ends Here Jumper
I couldn’t help myself and had to put this in. If you read my about page, you’d already know that Forever Ends Here is my favourite band. Well at the end of last month, I went to a gig of theirs and also bought their jumper. I am a huge fan of crewnecks, and it is one of the most comfortable jumpers I own. It fits perfectly, especially since I do like my jumpers a little baggy so that they’re really comfy and easy to slip on and off. The thickness of the jumper is also fantastic as it is great for winter with say, a thermal underneath. And what’s not to love about a new piece of merch from your favourite band!?

With Confidence – Better Weather
In terms of music, the first album I loved this month (even though it only came out in the middle of the month) is Better Weather by With Confidence. For those of you who don’t know, With Confidence is a band from Sydney, Australia, who recently signed with Hopeless Records. How great is that for a little Aussie band!?
Anyway, they released their debut album under Hopeless Records and I’ve had it on repeat since! Very rarely will I like every song on an album, but it’s safe to say that I do love all the tracks on Better Weather! So do support a local band and follow them as they move onto bigger and better things!

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So those have been a couple of my favourite things this month. Sorry for the lack of items featured. It was the exam period this month so I didn’t get that much time to explore new things but hopefully I will get to next month.

As we say goodbye to June, I hope it was a good month for you. If not, we’re saying hello to July very shortly so stay in there and keep on smiling.

Love,

Jess

Beginner Recipes For Each Meal

Despite already having cooked at home, moving out meant that I had to cook for myself a lot more often. This drove me to try out all sorts of recipes for different meal times, and so I thought it’d be nice for me to do a blog post showing you my simplest breakfast, lunch and dinner recipes which are fantastic for people who are just starting to find their way round the kitchen.

Breakfast:

Oatmeal
Anyone who knows me will tell you that I absolutely love oats. People often think that healthy food isn’t usually that tasty, but given that you can add whatever you please with your oats, oatmeal is definitely something that is delicious!

Oatmeal is honestly the easiest and fastest thing to make in the morning, and I will share the simplest method with you.
1) Add your desired amount of oats into a microwavable bowl (I usually do 1/3 – 1/2 cup).
2) Pour twice the amount of liquid into the bowl. You can use water, milk or a mix of both. I generally use water because I like to have my oats with milk, so this is entirely up to you. Also, if you like your oats more liquidy, I would add a bit more liquid.
3) Put your bowl into the microwave for around 2 minutes and 30 seconds. I use rolled oats so it’s usually done in that time. However, quick oats will take less time while steel cut oats will take a wee bit longer (it’s fairly easy to judge for yourself).
4) Take the bowl out of the microwave and add your desired toppings. You can add fruit, nuts, spices (I like to use cinnamon), yogurt, milk… Well basically anything you want to put in it really!

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Lunch

Pasta
As a student, I always need something quick and easy to make for in between classes. I suppose most people would opt for a sandwich, but I’m not much of a bread person unless it’s toast. So what I like to do is make a really basic pasta salad type dish, which is nice and filling, and you can take it on the go in a container!

Rather than typing out what I do in a stepwise fashion, I thought I’d just write it as a paragraph because I feel like pasta is something anyone can make as it is so easy and versatile. Firstly, cook your dry pasta as directed on the packaging. I prefer using wholemeal pasta because it generally has more fibre and protein than your regular pasta. Also, I find that wholemeal pasta has more texture as you bite into it and so I think it’s nicer to eat. The only con about this is that wholemeal pasta does take longer to cook.
Once your pasta is finished, drain the hot water and then pour cold water over it to minimise the starch content. You will then take your pasta out of the pot and transfer it into a bowl. What I will then do is cook my protein and veges in a pan. The good thing about this is that you can choose whatever veges and protein you want because as I said before, you can basically put anything with pasta. Once they are cooked, add the pasta to the pan, along with any seasoning or sauce you want. I like to add herbs with my pasta, and when avocados are in season, I will often add half an avocado to make my pasta creamier and more delicious! However, if you’re feeling a bit lazy, you can also just add salad leaves to your pasta to satisfy your 5+ a day.

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Dinner

Burrito Bowl
Again, as a student, we don’t always have the most time. So a burrito bowl is another fantastic meal to make where you can just add whatever you want to it, and it’s super healthy and delicious! It’s also very easy to make because you can just use canned beans so even if you don’t have much time to cook dried beans, you can still have a burrito bowl! Considering how many burrito bowl recipes I’ve tried in my time, what I thought I’d do is just share three of my favourites. They are all fairly similar but some are simpler than others.

Oh She Glows: http://ohsheglows.com/2015/11/02/diy-burrito-bowl/

Blogilates: http://www.blogilates.com/blog/2016/05/27/healthy-homemade-vegan-chipotle-burrito-bowl/

Iowa Girl Eats: http://iowagirleats.com/2014/08/29/easy-homemade-burrito-bowls/

So there we have it! Those are my favourite simple meals to make for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Do give them a try and I hope you find them as good as I do!

Love,

Jess

Tips For Exploring

A spontaneous trip to explore a city will always sound thrilling. Being in a different country, you’ll get to see and hear things you normally wouldn’t. You get to go to places you’d never been before. And you get to develop new interests because of these places.

As someone who only recently moved to Melbourne, the thought of exploring the city is extremely appealing. So as you can imagine, I have had many opportunities to go and do so, hence allowing me to share my tips for exploring a city (some tips more obvious than others).

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1) Map
I suppose the point of exploring is to go wander around places you’ve never been to before. It is nice to just go on a little adventure and discover new places in an area for yourself. However, I cannot stress the importance of a map. It is the one thing that will get you back to where you started when you can’t seem to navigate your way round, or you feel like you’re getting a little bit lost.

Now I don’t want to sound like I’m from Gen X, but having a hardcopy map is a lot safer than using your phone. You’re probably thinking, why would I say such a thing? I don’t want to look like a tourist!? Isn’t it easier to just use your phone? I mean, you have your phone on you 24/7 anyway, and a physical map would just be an extra thing to carry around with you!  However, if you rely on your phone, you may run out of battery, thus preventing you from being able to use it if an emergency occurs. Very rarely would you go exploring on your own, but even if there are at least two of you with two phones, I’d just rather be safe than sorry.

2) Time of day
Don’t get me wrong, exploring the city at night is much more gripping than during the day. However, it doesn’t take a genius to figure out that at night, it’s a lot more difficult to see where you’re going, and that’s clearly a problem that will never go away.

This kind of links to the previous tip actually. You see, when you go exploring during the day, everything is bright and visible. You can see road signs and landmarks, allowing you to navigate your way round easily with a map during the day. In contrast, you can’t really see the signs or key features of a place at night, and so you do run the risk of getting lost because a map won’t be that handy. So I suppose, if you want to play things on the safe side, do go exploring during the day! That way, you can also see things unique to the city much more easily! In saying this, I would recommend going at night after perhaps knowing your way round a little bit because it really is a lot more fascinating.

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3) Research
Now I know when a trip is spontaneous, you don’t exactly have the time to do your research. I mean, that’s what spontaneous is about right? No planning and no prior knowledge. However, this can result in you getting yourself into a bit of a muddle.
The other day, my friend and I made a trip to the city. It was late at night, we’d finished our dinner and was on our way to a festival. When we checked out the event page for the festival, they had a list of things we could see, eat and do. So yeah, I guess you could say that we did plan this. Unfortunately, when we arrived, it wasn’t the amazing festival we thought it would be. There were pretty lights to look at and a few musical performances here and there, but otherwise there wasn’t that much to see. We were feeling a little peckish after dinner and considering how cold it was, we wanted something warm to eat. So this is where my emphasis on research comes in…

We continued walking along the path and began to see heaps of people going in one direction. So we thought, hey, why not follow them and see where they’re going? Perhaps there’s something to see that we weren’t aware of? Little did we know that the Wallabies vs. England game was on, and so everyone was going to the stadium. Obviously we weren’t going to that and so we kept walking. But as we did, there were mobs of people coming in the opposite direction as they wanted to get to the game. So there we were, two girls walking in the opposite direction of massive groups of people. It was insane and we struggled to squeeze through everyone! We ended up walking over 4km to the nearest suburb, which I suppose you’d say is a little ridiculous. So my point is, do carry out some research (even looking something up while walking around would be good!) to know what events are going on around you so that you don’t run into the mess we got ourselves into.

4) Zomato
Most, if not all, people would save a whole day to go exploring. So obviously, you’d get a little hungry and want to find a place which serves some delicious food. This tip is a short one, but is very handy.

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I’m guessing a lot of you will have heard of Zomato. But in case you haven’t, or you don’t use it, it has literally every food place you can think of worldwide. You can filter your search so that you can find your ideal place. Whether it be the cuisine, time of day or price range, you will always manage to find a nice restaurant or cute cafe that floats your boat. Furthermore, by using Zomato, it means you don’t risk walking into a fancy looking restaurant and coming out with an unexpected huge bill, because you only wanted to go there for how nice it looked…
On a side note, I will be making a post on my favourite places to eat in Melbourne so do look out for that!

So those are a few of my tips that I thought I’d share after experiencing difficulties that come with exploring a city.

Happy travelling and stay safe.

Love,

Jess

From Me To You

Hello!

So in typical blogger style, I thought I’d start off with introducing myself.

I’m Jess, 18 years old, and a Kiwi living in Australia. Now I suppose my recent journey of moving from New Zealand to Australia will form a great basis of what my posts are about (this may or may not be explicit).

I’m passionate about fitness and health, and I am an avid baker, hence why I do bake vegan frequently. I will probably also post recipes because I do like to experiment, although you can guess that most will not turn out well the first time round.

Rather than rambling on about myself, I thought I’d just do a quick fire round of a get to know me tag so you have a simple idea of who I am.

  1. What is your favourite color?
    Pink
  2. How tall are you?
    5′3 so yeah, I understand the struggles of being short.
  3. Cats or Dogs?
    Dogs
  4. How many countries have you visited?
    4 – all of which are in Oceania
  5. Are you in/gone to college?
    Currently in
  6. What was your favourite/worst subject in High School?
    My favourite would definitely be Chemistry and closely followed by Physics. My worst would be maths and I’d like to think I’m not the only one haha.
  7. What is your favourite drink?
    Chai tea
  8. What is your favourite animal?
    Seal
  9. Tea or Coffee?
    Tea! On a side note though, I couldn’t stand coffee at first but now I don’t mind lattes.
  10. What sports do you play/Have you played?
    I’ve played quite a few in my time but I suppose my favourite would be netball.
  11. What is your favourite movie? 
    The Notebook. It makes me cry every time.
  12. Do you speak any different languages and how well?
    Cantonese, although my knowledge is extremely limited.
  13. Do you have any siblings?
    Yes, one brother.
  14. What are some of your favourite tv shows?
    Home and Away! Literally cannot get enough of it!
  15. Tell us one of your bad habits!
    I can barely ever think of one at the top of my mind when someone asks me this so the only one I can think of is talking to myself. I do it way often and the fact that I live on campus means that people living next to me probably think I’m so weird.

So I hope that gives you a little insight to who I am, and I do have more about myself on my “about” page.
I will generally post one or two times a week so happy reading, and I hope you have a good day!

Love,

Jess