Wednesday, 29 January 2014

Recipe | Chocolate & Peanut Butter Mug

Chocolate and peanut butter cake in a mug? Classy! But when your sugar cravings have you replicating a tiger hunting its prey, who cares?

What you’ll need:
3 tbsp. of flour (whole wheat or white)
2 tbsp. of cocoa powder
1/4 tsp. of baking soda (I survived without this)
2 tbsp. of sugar of your choice
3 tbsp. milk of choice – I used Almond milk
1 tbsp. oil – vegetable or coconut (or melted butter)
1 tbsp. of peanut butter (crunchy is my personal fave!)
Small amount of cashew nuts

Optional extras:
Chocolate chips, cashew nuts/walnuts/hazelnuts

In your favourite mug, mix all of your ingredients together but leave the peanut butter out for a moment.

Once everything is mixed nicely add the peanut butter in a nice 'blob'.

Place the mug in the microwave for no more than 1 minute 10 seconds. Then remove the mug and allow it to cool before eating and… tadaaa!

The best thing about these recipes is that you can add to them and jig them around to satisfy whatever craving. Want more chocolate? Add chocolate chips. Not a fan of peanut butter? Swap it for berries or bananas. Want a simple sponge? Omit the cocoa powder and let your extras do the talking!

So whether you’re after a quick cheat meal or you simply have a sweet tooth like mine that overrules any good intentions you ever have – this is one for everyone.

Let me know what variations you try and of course, enjoy!

L x

P.S – if you have any recipe requests, let me know here or my twitter @lailaMLK

Sunday, 26 January 2014

The Weekend | Almost Famous

NOTE - this photograph is not even remotely relevant to this post but I just love breakfast! It was homemade chocolate porridge with peanut butter (I’m obsessed), raspberries, banana and walnuts and it was just so delicious that I had to share it!

Grey t-shirt – New Look
Faux leather trousers – H&M 
Nike Dunk Sky Highs – Footlocker 
Necklace – Warehouse (old)
Watch – Michael Kors
Rings – H&M 
Nails - Essie in Midnight Cami

I did something questionable today - I combined silver and gold jewellery... and liked it. I know this is considered a big taboo in the world of fashion but just like wearing navy and black together, I just don't see what the big deal is.

Fully embracing my penultimate weekend of living in Manchester, it was time for a burger and there was only one place on the menu – Almost Famous.

Two of my best friends, Michaella and Meeka, from Leeds drove down Sunday morning and after showing them around the apartment and having a brief moan about our latest outbreaks or hangovers, we headed to Great Northern Square for lunch (I just called dinner lunch… I’m a changed woman).

After quite literally googling ‘the best burger in Manchester’ I had high expectations of Almost Famous having read glowing reviews; we were not disappointed. The restaurant itself was one of a kind with a life size cow (model obviously) and a King Kong style gorilla all under one roof. I went for the Famous burger with Winning fries (they were yummy sweet potato - I'm a recent convert) and it was quite literally the best burger that I have ever consumed. The girls agreed. I can’t quite describe why, maybe it was the Famous sauce, the cheese, the bun? I have no idea, all I know is that it was amazing. 

It's been great to catch up properly with the girls and it's making me quite excited about the next few months in my beloved home town of Leeds.

Hope you've all had a lovely weekend.
L x

Thursday, 23 January 2014

OOTD | Ease our minds together

Leopard cardigan – Topshop
Off-white shirt – Mango
Jeans – New Look
Tan suede Chelsea boots – Topshop
Watch – Michael Kors
‘Love’ earring – Topshop
Dogeared wishbone necklace - Asos

There is no typical uniform in Dock House, the dress code is that anything goes – and no, there genuinely are no limits.

I’d been lazy with getting dressed lately and thought I’d try out a new combination from my existing wardrobe and try to avoid anything black for the first time in a long while; this outfit is the result.

I love the fact that every item I’m wearing is a staple that never seems to be in or out of fashion. I admire the classic, French chic style and like to think that this outfit gives a nod to that.

After the long and blissful rest last weekend, work has been hectic! There’s so much filming going on and therefore lots to organise. It has also started to dawn on me (to the point where I bolted upright from a fairly deep sleep upon realising) that my first placement will come to an end in just over two weeks. My emotions are ranging from sad to scared to excited to gobsmacked. These past three months have flashed by before the blink of my eyes, just as we were warned, making me strive to appreciate the next eleven (already eleven left out of fifteen!) months of this once in a lifetime apprenticeship. To end on a high - I am ecstatic to be returning to London soon for training! The Cambridge Satchel Company store in Covent Gardens is literally calling my name!

L x

Monday, 20 January 2014

Weekend | Carden Park Hotel & Spa

Having been ordered (ok advised, but still!) to relax, drink plenty of water, consume non-fatty foods and my personal favourite, avoid vigorous exercise – I am currently glued to the sofa, reflecting on the long weekend I am soon to leave behind.

The weekend for us, started on Friday with a spot of shopping at the Trafford Centre. I managed to finally pick up some silver jewellery and new fitness clothing. On Saturday we went to see 'The Wolf of Wall Street' - if you haven't already, you must. It was the best film I have seen in a very long time and Leonardo DiCaprio can really do no wrong in my eyes at the moment.

On Sunday morning, B and myself headed to the Carden Park Hotel and Spa in Chester. 
The Random part: before beginning the relaxation stage of our weekend (to B’s horror) I thought it would be a brilliant idea to take advantage of the fun and games available at Muddy Good Fun. We did the Sky Fox activity which was a series of zip wires through the hotel grounds. I LOVED IT! Although I think it’s safe to say that the poor guy that was lumbered with taking us around thought we had some serious issues.

Anyway, after the random zip wire activity we checked in to the hotel then grabbed some lunch and headed to the spa in our plush robe and slippers. We swam, jacuzzi’d, steamed and sauna’d before torturing ourselves with a brutally cold shower – I’m told it closes the pores so hope that is the case! After that we, well I, had a good workout in the gym, and then we retreated to our room for an afternoon nap with a hint of old school Nickelodeon programmes.

My favourite part: the three course dinner. In the words of B, it was ‘insaaaane’.
We chose to eat in the Redmond’s Restaurant - for starter I had the duck wonton with noodle salad; my main was the salmon fillet with curried lentils and for dessert I had the lemon and raspberry meringue slice with a shortbread crust, a raspberry syllabub and raspberry sorbet (phew! that was a mouthful - no pun intended). I’m pretty much drooling just thinking about it. The service was amazing too. We then treated ourselves to a cheeky gin and lemonade to end the night.

The treatment: the next morning, after a delicious breakfast in Redmond’s, we finally had our treatment. We both opted for the detox body wrap (hence my ‘orders’ to relax) that included a skin brush, exfoliation, detoxing wrap and a scalp massage. I’ve never had a spa treatment but I would most definitely do it again! I felt so relaxed and sleepy. Sadly, I forgot about my camera for this part of the weekend so I don’t have any photographic evidence of us wrapped in tinfoil – what a shame!

It has been a weekend of firsts and certainly one that I wouldn’t mind repeating – it’s amazing what a bit of relaxation, delicious food and fabulous company can really do for you. Have you ever considered a spa weekend, or even the zip wire?!

 L x 

Wednesday, 15 January 2014

OOTD | Repeat yesterday's mistakes

Jumper/dress- Zara (sold out)
Black matt-look leggings - Miss Selfridge
Black chelsea boots - Topshop (sold out)
Spike hoop earrings - New Look (old)
Watch - Michael Kors
Bracelet - Disney Couture
Rimmel 'Black Out' nails with Matte top coat

I wore this outfit to go to The Alchemist on New York Street as one of the apprentice girls was in Manchester with work; so of course we seized the opportunity to catch up! 

I love this jumper, it has a very worn and grungy look about it. I think it's meant to be worn as a top but (as usual) I bought a larger size so that I could wear it as a dress and over tights. My wardrobe is filled with a range of sizes. I don't know about you but I prefer to buy clothes as I want them to fit, not exactly how they're intended to.

This bracelet is one of my favourite possessions. The quote says "Believing is just the beginning'. I'm a sucker for Disney and quotes - if you've seen my Pinterest or Instagram you'll have guessed this by now. I originally had the black version which was a present for my 18th birthday, but managed to lose it almost immediately. My lovely mum was kind enough to replace it for me though.

I'm terrible with nail polishes. I have a ridiculous amount and literally wear about four of them, all of which are the darkest colours I can possibly find. The matte top coat is something I'd completely forgotten about but I adore the way it looks! I think I might push the boat out and attempt an oxblood red and matte combination, that's colour right?

This last week has been a combination of things - the good, the bad and the downright ugly. It's taught me a lot about the people I know, or thought I knew, and proved that the path I was already on and the people I am with are certainly the right ones. Bianca and I are taking a few days out from work this weekend and heading to a Spa in Chester, it's safe to say that it cannot come soon enough!

In other news, my first placement on my apprenticeship is coming to an end soon and I've finally found out where my second will be! I'm so excited but also extremely nervous - I'll let you know more as it gets closer!

L x

*P.S - I apologise for the terrible image quality - I'm adapting to a different room!*