1 September 2015

#NationalBurgerDay - The most bun you can have with your clothes on

Guess what you guys?! I think I mayo've found the recipe for my own personal heaven. And it's all thanks to Asda

Some context would probably be helpful here, huh? Oh, and you'd best prepare yourselves for the corniest selection of food-related puns I've ever pulled together. Don't say you weren't Quorned. 

About a week ago, Skye showed me an invite she'd received to Asda's Blogger MEAT Up in honour of National Burger Day (which she'd salad-ly had to decline due to existing plans). My initial reaction was equal parts embarrassment and excitement... How on earth had I lived for twenty seven years without knowing about National Burger Day?! What kind of burger fan was I?! And, also, EEEEP!! NATIONAL BURGER DAY!!!

I'm not usually one for partaking in National Whatever Day celebrations, but when the opportunity to be patriotic came sandwiched between sesame seed buns and drizzled in BBQ sauce I almost had to be physically restrained from singing God Save The Queen through a mouthful of red pepper hummus. 

Then I read the invite and slaw how many foodie puns the inimitable Shaun had managed to BB-Queue up in his email; resulting in a second mixed reaction of admiration and a hot-dogged determination not to let him beet me. I replied immediately begging to take Skye's plaice. And, no, I'm not ashamed about begging; I'd happily sell my sole for another one of those halloumi burgers.

Yes, there were actual chefs running the grill. SWOON.

Between the puns and the thought of a chargrilled feast, I was feeling beyond excited when I rolled up to Brighton station on 27 August and (c)hopped aboard a Big Lemon bus en (c)route to what turned out to be the fanciest BBQ of my life. Seriously- have you ever been to a BBQ with a JAZZ BAND?! I probably should've brushed my hair...

Jazz band(!) admiring aside, I relished the chance to ketchup with some of my lovely blogging buddies over a stack of saucesome burgers (including loads of veggie options), salad and Pimms. Followed by two huge bowls of Eton Mess - and I was one of the more restrained dessert-eaters. Man, was that Mess good. 

I'd like to thank Asda and Talented Talkers (especially Erica and Shaun) for their fantastic hosting skills; it was so lovely meating you all! OK, OK - I promise that's shallot. 

Katie xxx

P.S. This post was technically sponsored by Asda, in the form of all the Eton Mess I demolished, but the opinions, sentiment, and puns are very much my own. As if Asda would want credit for those... 

P.P.S. Asda also kindly provided me with the photos. Which is just as well, as I've discovered that three glasses of Pimms does not enhance my photography skills. Who knew?! 

26 August 2015

Meetups and marvellous museums

Hello lovelies!

How are you?

Today I'm writing to you from a cosy corner of one of my favourite public houses (thanks for the speedy WiFi, guys!), accompanied by a large lime and soda and an unwavering smile. The smile is thanks to my new favourite website which, strangely, has absolutely nothing to do with cake or curious homewares. I know.

I've described it to my friends as a cross between Facebook and a dating site, but without the dating part. Which they were rather relieved about, after being exposed to some of my more colourful dating stories (The Guy Who Bit My Face remains top of the Worst Date leader board. He's had some very stiff competition).

Anyway, face-biting aside (now there's a sentence I never thought I'd have to write!) I'm feeling all warm and fuzzy from a weekend spent making friends with several groups of total strangers, and it's all thanks to Meetup. Meetup suggests local groups you can join (all free) based on your hobbies and interests. Naturally, my profile lists "Extreme Sports", "Healthy Living", and "Political Debates", because that's the kind of person I am. Ahem. 

Two weeks ago, I dipped my toe into the socialising-with-strangers thing by going for breakfast with a few people who had declared themselves to be fans of tea. I figured anyone who loves breakfast has to be a pretty good egg, and meeting before midday reduced the chance of any murder-by-internet-weirdo scenarios. I mean, whoever heard of someone getting stabbed over a stack of pancakes*?!

After the success of the breakfast meet-up, I decided to (literally) up my game and spend the entirety of last weekend meeting new people. On Saturday, I went on a tour of several Brighton museums, followed by a spontaneous pub crawl, and I spent Sunday afternoon learning some new games (and pretending to be a giant. The mermaid option was already taken) thanks to some fellow exercise-shirking boardgame enthusiasts.  

Saturday's museum tour began at the Old Police Cells Museum, where we learned about gruesome murderesses and were allowed to try on police helmets. Our tour group reached unanimous agreement to refrain from becoming 19th Century policemen, despite the fact you could keep snacks under your hat.

I raised some questions about whether they'd considered using metal-based security systems for their cells...

And we discovered some nice fonts, a half-fancy doll's house, and PC Otter. Obviously. 

Our next stop was Preston Manor, where we discovered that there's no such thing as too many Chinese Buddist Lions...

... that the people at Doulton's really upped their game after their original footwarmer...

... and that Edwardian fire extinguishers were a damn sight fancier than ours...

... even if they did only cater to people whose hands decided to self-combust. 

Our third stop was Brighton Museum, which I wasn't that fussed about as I'd been several times before. Wasn't that fussed about, I should say, until I discovered they had AN ACTUAL REAL LIFE BATSUIT ON DISPLAY!!!!

Holy fan-girling, Batman!

Brighton Museum's also currently playing host to the Natural History Museum's Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2014 exhibition, which I was sad to have missed during a recent trip to London. I'm so, so pleased I finally got to see them, as it was, without doubt, the most astounding group of photographs I've ever seen. They practically rendered me speechless. ME. I wasn't allowed to take photos, but you can view (and buy) some of the prints on the NHM's website.

In lieu of a cheeky screenshot of my favourite photo from the exhibition, here's a picture of a super fancy dress:

I honestly cannot recommend Meetup enough; it's already given my social life a complete overhaul, and my diary is practically overflowing with fun days out. And, if you can't find a group covering your favourite hobby, you can even start your own. Anyone fancy joining my Brownie Eating and Nicolas Cage Movie Watching Club?

Katie xxx

* Except, of course, if someone should try to steal someone else's pancakes. In that case, I say stab away.

P.S. This isn't a sponsored post or anything like that- I just bloody love that website.

20 August 2015

Three Things Thursday

Howdy, Guvnors*! 

How's tricks?

Today's contributions to the ever-growing list of weirdness (aka this blog) are all, happily, free. I'd like to think it's a sign of me becoming less materialistic, but yesterday's response to finding the two Gilmore Girls box-sets missing from my collection would insist otherwise. I might have yelled "YAAAY!" and punched the air a bit. Sorry again for making you jump, Game Shop Geeks...

1. Chalk it up
I know lots of people find sitting on a beach incredibly relaxing, but my fidgety fingers just never stop itching for something to do. On my last visit, Mother Nature was kind enough to provide gratis entertainment in the form of a smattering of chalk chunks mixed in amongst the stones. 

I was secretly hoping that someone might find them before the tide washed my scribbles away...

2. Suspended Sofas
I've decided that all Wednesday afternoons should be spent with friends eating Mexican food, baking cakes, and watching trashy Netflix movies (Burlesque, anyone?). Unfortunately, I don't think my annual leave quota would cover it- but it did make yesterday feel all the more special. It also had just a hint of the surreal, thanks to the d├ęcor in my friend's local Paperchase (a shop I find rather enchanting anyway...). 

Apparently, the floor was rotting away in the first floor of the building; so they came up with a rather ingenious way of decorating the empty space. 

I filmed a speedy video too, to show you all how it's suspended within the space. Pretty cool, huh?


3. Fat Flap
My favourite part of yesterday's adventures surpassed even the magical floating furniture, after my friend's pug (who apparently loves food even more than I do) realised he could no longer fit through the cat-flap...

That face!!

I'll admit, I used his pu(d)giness as an excuse not to give him any of my banana loaf. Cruel wench, I am.

What have you been up to this week? 

Katie xxx

* I thought I'd try a new greeting, but I think I pulled it off about as well as a rapping grandmother. And not a cool, Betty White-style grandma either. "Hello lovelies!" service will resume as normal from my next post.