Overdue Update

A slightly overdue update; thanks to a really generous donation from the Canterbury Rotary Club’s Millennium Scholarship Fund I have reached my ICS fundraising target! In the last few weeks I have also started all my vaccinations (my poor arms… they’re all bruised and feeling a little like pin cushions now) and later on today I am making my way to Wellingborough – don’t worry, I had to Google it too…. – for my pre-placement training weekend. I will finally get to meet the people I will be travelling to Sierra Leone with alongside volunteers going to Senegal!

Honestly, I’m a little nervous. Travelling on my own to somewhere I have never been; meeting loads of new people in such a short space of time. It’s going to be a little hard for me but I’m sure it will  be worth it from what I’ve heard from other volunteers. I’ll let you know how it all went when I get back!

In other news, I am now fully into my exams. This afternoon I reach my half way point which is both a relief and a scare. So far I would say they have been going okay, I just hope that I’ve put enough work in across the year and intensely over the last few weeks to get the grades that I want. I’ll just cross my fingers and pray for the best; it normally works okay.

Aside from the big stresses, life is still very busy! It’s awards season around the university and one of my societies has been nominated for loads of things! Our president and fundraising officer are off to Nottingham today for a national award ceremony that we were nominated for; on Wednesday is the Kent Union awards where we’ve been nominated for another 3 awards and the university RAG awards are coming up too – again we’ve been nominated! Obviously I am very proud of all the work that we have put in as a committee this year to run the society, fundraisers and projects but it is just so busy!!

Then to top it off I’ve got people with birthday bashes going on, the Dicken’s festival is coming up and the university concert band have our summer concert soon too… If I make it to the end of term I’ll certainly deserve the few days break before jetting off to do (hopefully) amazing work in Sierra Leone. I think I’ll just stick to surviving each day as it comes….

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Coming to an end

I’ve got one week left of the term and to be honest I can’t wait to see the back of it. It feels like it has been one really long term and I need a rest. I mean, I do a lot of resting, but I need a rest where I don’t worry about anything and just chill – which I will do on holiday. I am doing a complete shut off from the rest of the world. No phone, no facebook, no email, no nothing. I need a week away from all people and stress. Of course, it means when I come back I will likely have LOTS to catch up on but I really don’t care.

In other news, I drew the results to my raffle today. Technically my flat mate Judith drew the tickets but same difference. In total I managed to raise £104 for that raffle, which is 1/8 of my overall fundraising target and has brought me all the way up to 79%! Straight on to planning the next thing, I suppose.

I have finally finished all my coursework for the year, which is probably why I took this weekend as slowly as I did. I need to revise but you know how it is… Motivation can desert you when you most need it. Still, I’ve got a week until I break up and I am sure that I can push myself to do something.

I went to the cinema yesterday evening and saw “The Ghost in the Shell”. It wasn’t that bad. Wasn’t great, but I had fun watching it anyway. In the last two and a half months I have, as counted this morning, been and seen 13 different films. Definitely making use of my limitless, I’d say!

Anyway, have a great week guys.

Practically Unrecognisable

You may or may not have noticed that my blog now has a new theme, let me know what you think. I’m still messing around with bits and bobs so please forgive me if links stop working!

Anyway, it has been a really good week. My sister’s show was actually amazing, not least because they managed to keep their Northern accents going practically the whole night! (Trust me when I say that it is hard for a Southerner to do a Northern accent without descending into some weird mix of Irish and Indian!) The show was so good that the local paper did an article on it and boy did the journalist sing the school’s praises. It was definitely deserved though, as always.

On Saturday morning I went to the cinema to see “Lion” which was really emotional. I was alright for the first half but from about an hour in I was basically always crying. Still, it was a really decent film and one of the few nominated films I have seen that I think actually deserves some of the awards it’s won.

Sunday I came home (after a really good roast dinner – thanks parents!). The rest of the week has passed without any major hitches.

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I met Brendan Cole!! Also, isn’t the cathedral pretty at night?

On Wednesday evening, though, I had a spectacular evening. I went to the Marlowe Theatre and saw Brendan Cole’s new show, All Night Long. We booked the tickets way back in September or October (I can’t remember!) and I was so excited that it had finally come around. He and five other dancers put on the most amazing show, backed up by a group of amazing musicians, and Phoebe and I had such a great time. We waited behind at the stage door afterwards and got to have our photo taken with Brendan (I also got my programme signed!) so that just made the night even better.

Yesterday I went to the cinema in the evening to see The Great Wall. Hardly the best of films but it was a fun way to spend my night none the less. I even managed to sneak in my dinner!

Looking ahead, I have a feeling that the next few weeks are going to get very busy and potentially very stressful. I have a lot of things coming up, deadlines for one, but not everything will be bad. Positive things: I have an assessment day for ICS coming up (more to come on this topic should it all go well!), a 12 hour read-a-thon for World Book Day where I will be dressed as super-villain Poison Ivy in a bid to raise money for a local charity and then my Easter holiday in the not-so-distance future. Negative: pretty much everything else.

Still, I’ll make it through! I’ve had a kind of limited set of meals this week, mainly because I have been running around like a little bit of a headless chicken. Even so, I managed to eat well and had a pretty balanced set of dinners:

  • Saturday – pasta bake and “comfort pie” (cheesy potatoes with leeks and peas, I think… It’s my mum’s recipe so I’d have to ask!)
  • Sunday – roast lamb
  • Monday – chili beans and sausage pasta bake
  • Tuesday – Monday’s left overs
  • Wednesday – tomato and chorizo risotto
  • Thursday – chicken chow mein
  • Friday – falafel with salad in pitta bread

Thirty days has September…

Obviously, I know it isn’t September. I may be losing time and have no idea what day it actually is but I haven’t totally lost it – yet. I was just thinking about how that old rhyme goes, you know:

Thirty days has September

April, June and November

All the rest have thirty-one

Except for February all alone

That has twenty eight.

I know there are loads of versions of it and some do have another line about the leap year but really it is such a terrible rhyme. Every time I think of February I think of how it was kind of just stuck on the end of this rhyme like, oh yeah that exists too. Anyway, that’s the thought of the week.

Moving swiftly on… It’s been a long week. More so than usual, I think, but that may be because of the terrible weather. These week’s recipe was Lentil and Fish Coconut Dhal. If you haven’t already, have a go! It’s great and very easily adapted to whatever you have lying around.

I am just finishing off my recipe of the month so keep an eye out for that, too. Have a good week!

Well, That Went Quickly…

January has kind of flown by, hasn’t it! It has been a strange week, I can tell you. As I’ve said before my timetable is odd – I mean, what did I do to deserve days where my only lectures are 9-10am and 5-6pm? Anyway, with all these long gaps in my day I have started to feel as though I am cramming two days in to one. If that makes sense? I do my morning lectures, go home, eat, do some work and then sit around for a bit. Mid afternoon I will go out again and start again and it is messing with my brain. Wednesday morning I woke up thinking that the day after would be Saturday…

Anyway, my dodgy internal clock aside it has been a semi okay week. Focusing on the positives, I got some lab scripts back from last term along with some assessments that we’ve been waiting for for ages and I was pleased with my marks so that’s all good.

Yesterday was Eurovision: You Decide, and that was… well, less fun that we thought because none of the songs sounded like traditional Eurovision; no big key changes, dodgy pop dancing, weird instruments. There were too many ballads for my taste and none went anywhere. Still. The woman that the UK has chosen did have the best voice by far (and had a super impressive CV – west end shows AND had been in The Sarah Jane Adventures?!)

On a very sad note, John Hurt has died. I loved his voice so much. I shall, later today, watch something he was in in memory of him. So sad.

So food this week, I had:

  • Saturday: Vegetable Thai curry
  • Sunday: Chicken fajitas
  • Monday: Chilli con Carne for a late lunch, Sausage and sweetcorn quiche for dinner
  • Tuesday: Chicken curry and chips for another late lunch, more cold quiche for dinner
  • Wednesday: Tomato and chorizo risotto
  • Thursday: Mince curry and poached egg
  • Friday: Homemade BBQ chicken pizza

My weekly shop cost slightly more than normal but the price of my cereal has gone up for £2 (or £2.50 when not on “sale”) to £2.65 :0 And I brought some pre-cooked chicken to have with my lunch because I wanted something different. Still, I’m hardly breaking the bank here!

Now I must dash, got to get into town and run a story telling session in town. See ya!

Back In The Swing

This week was the first week of my second term and it’s been okay actually. I got a couple of marks back from assessments and assignments that we did before Christmas and I am pretty happy with how I am doing. Kinda sadly, whoever wrote the timetable for this term clearly has something against forensic scientists as they have given us 9ams every day save one and filled the rest of our week with stupid gaps that aren’t quite long enough to make going home worth it (but I go anyway because… well…. food).

That aside, I’ve had a pretty normal food week although I have noticed that I am snacking a little more than usual. I suppose knowing that I have biscuits around and making cheesecake isn’t really helping but it is something I’m going to try and curb! Still, walking up the hill to uni at least twice a day may well counter the junk food so I’m not all that worried.

My menu this week was:

  • Saturday: Stuffed peppers
  • Sunday: Sweet potato tagine
  • Monday: Chilli con carne (cold but still yummy)
  • Tuesday: Chicken curry (only slightly cold)
  • Wednesday: Baked fish with potatoes, tomatoes, red pepper and onions
  • Thursday: Lentil and fish coconut dahl
  • Friday: Lasagne and garlic bread

The recipe of the week was a one pot meal, texan hash.

In other news, I signed up to Odeon Limitless this week and have already been to see enough films that this month it has paid for itself! And in about an hour’s time I will be watching La La Land for the second time with my flatmate. I figured since I don’t spend money on drinking or going out that I had the cash to spare and this is something that will a) get me out the house when I am stressed and b) let me see the films that I wouldn’t normally go and pay to see. Win win as far as I can see.

Did people watch Sherlock last weekend too? Some of my friends came around to our house and we sat in the dark with hot chocolate (and marshmallows!) watching it and sort of freaking out – only a little, of course. It was a goodun for sure, although definitely a little weird! Anyway, have a great week!

A Well Deserved Break

I am back home with my family for Christmas now, hooray! This week has been both extremely busy and extremely not. As all students can understand, this has been a week of deadlines and I also had a timed assessment for my law module. Thankfully, as a science subject, I didn’t have to write any essays but I have been surrounded by the stress of those who have. But in other news, we went to see Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them in the on campus cinema (£5.30 a ticket!) and it was great. Yesterday I also went to see Rogue One with my mum and my sister and oh boy was it good.

Food this week has been literally clearing out any fresh food or stuff in the freezer that needed eating (remember that they recommend meat only stays frozen for a few months – who they are, I do not know but they must put nice little symbols on the inside of the freezer door for a reason). I have enjoyed:

  • Saturday: Sweet potato falafel (didn’t really work all that well, I ended up with sweet potato mush but it was tasty)
  • Sunday: Pork, mash, roast onions, yorkshire pudding, stuffing and gravy
  • Monday – Sweet potato and spinach lasagne
  • Tuesday – Buffet at society party (dominos pizza, sausage rolls, cocktail sausages, biscuits, cakes etc!)
  • Wednesday – Beef stirfry and noodles
  • Thursday – Cheese, baked bean and onion quesadilla
  • Friday – Pulled chicken burgers

Before I go back I will have to do a big shop to get me through the next term but I think I have done reasonably well this term. I hope that you guys have too. Hopefully after the new year I will have lots of new recipes ready to put up for you so that you can expand your repertoire and try new things!

I may or may not write again until after Christmas so have a great holiday and don’t forget to take some time to relax!