Wednesday, 29 April 2015

STUDENT RECIPE SERIES: One-pan Kale, Feta and Tomato Spaghetti



Meat can be expensive.  So I tend to try and stick a couple of vegetarian dishes into my diet every week to keep the costs down.  Not only is this recipe inexpensive, it also only uses one pan, so less washing up for you!


INGREDIENTS
  • 75-100g spaghetti (500g for 49p at Lidl)
  • Handful of cherry/plum tomatoes (Tub for 75p at Lidl)
  • Feta/greek-style cheese to serve (200g for 75p at Tesco)
  • 1/3 bag of fresh curly kale (approx. 80-90p per bag)
  • Dash of olive oil
  • Pinch of salt
  • Juice from 1/4 lemon (5 for 99p at Morrisons)
One serving = 80p (I keep surprising myself at how little each serving actually costs!)

METHOD

1. Pop the spaghetti in a reasonably large pan and cook in boiling water.  Add a pinch of salt to taste.

2. Meanwhile, wash and prepare the kale (I always pull out the hard stalks because they tend to taste very bitter) and chop the tomatoes into halves/quarters.  After about 5 minutes of the spaghetti cooking, add the kale into the saucepan.

3. Add the tomatoes a couple of minutes later.

4. Leave to cook together until the spaghetti is soft and ready to eat.

5. Drain the water, leaving the spaghetti, kale and tomatoes in the pan.  Add the dash of olive oil and the lemon juice to flavour it.  I would usually use fresh lemons but I forgot to pick some up! I always keep a bottle of lemon juice in my cupboard for forgetful times like these.

6. Pop it all in a bowl and crumble the feta cheese over the top.


And you're done! Now go indulge in the kale and feta-y goodness.

Wednesday, 22 April 2015

REVIEW: Nail-buff.com

Just a quick shout-out post to a website I came across recently.  Nail-buff.com allows you to "upload" the nail polishes you own and compare the colours so you don't end up buying two of the same colour! Although currently there are not LOADS of brand colours already available to select, there is an option to create your own, which is very easy to do, especially if you have the nail polishes' website up in another tab like I did! I think it's a great concept and could come in so useful.




This is by no means my whole nail polish collection but you can see the idea! I love the way it's set up; it looks so slick and is easy to compare them.  Not only is there the option to upload your collection, but there's also an option to compare two specific colours! The website have also started uploading glitter colours (which are obviously pretty hard to duplicate yourself on a colour chart!) so I'm looking forward to being able to upload my Barry M glitter nail polishes in the near future I hope.  Do let me know if you also use this site, and if you do - what do you think?

Monday, 20 April 2015

#LookAfterYourself: Distress Tolerance

You may have heard of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) - it's the most widely used non-pharmaceutical therapy for disorders such as depression, anxiety, eating disorders, OCD, etc.  However, you may not have heard of Dialectical Behavioural Therapy (DBT).  DBT is a type of CBT, but it offers futher coping strategies such as mindfulness, emotion regulation and distress tolerance skills that are not covered in traditional CBT. 




While I am no expert in this field, my psychology placement experiences have taught me a lot about the benefits of DBT and I feel by sharing some of the skills taught in DBT, it could be helpful to those with diagnosed mental health issues, or even for anyone wanting to improve their general well-being!


I'm going to focus on distress tolerance skills, which aim to help you deal with overwhelming emotions, thoughts and situations.  It's important to remember that these skills are not designed to help you overcome and solve your problems but they may help you to react more rationally and constructively to overwhelming thoughts and events.

Two of the ways in which DBT suggests you can overcome or tolerate distress, at least in the short term, is using distractions or self-soothing activities.  Self-soothing encourages you to use your senses to soothe yourself.  For example, you may listen to some calming music (auditory), light a scented candle (olfactory), go to a picturesque spot or look at your favourite pictures (visual), savour your favourite meal or snack (gustatory), or pamper your body with a silky moisturiser (tactile).  The idea is to focus on these activities mindfully - fully engage in the sense you're stimulating and relax in the present moment.




The second distress tolerance skill - distraction - can help you to temporarily be lifted of your worries and anxieties by engaging in a pleasurable experience.  Distractions give you time to find an appropriate coping response to a distressing situation - they allow you to calm your emotions so you're in a better place emotionally to deal with any overwhelming thoughts and situations.  Even if you're not experiencing an overwhelming thought or event, I think it's important to set yourself some time to yourself so you don't get overloaded with everyday stressors and worries!

Here are some examples of how I personally like to distract myself from life's and my own stresses and anxieties:

1. Cook or bake something yummy

2. Take a nap! Sometimes a nap can solve everything

3. Take a bath - candles, music, face mask and magazines all necessary!

4. Blogging/reading others' blogs

5. Speak to a friend/family/boyfriend - just have a chat! It can really take your mind off things

6. Retail therapy - even little things like a special treat from the supermarket or a piece of jewellery

7. Exercise/yoga - yoga is a new one for me, but it really is very relaxing and puts me in a great mood

8. Paint my nails

9. Music - be it playing, listening or writing! (Cheeky plug to my Youtube channel here)

10. Look through old photos - here are some of my favourites!




I'd love to know if this post has helped you in any way! Leave me a comment down below with your feedback.  What do you do when you're feeling stressed out?

Wednesday, 15 April 2015

OOTD: Birthday Meal







For my mum's birthday last week we went out to a local pub restaurant for a meal which was really lovely but of course the most important part of this is deciding what to wear! I'm going to show you how I dressed up my favourite £5 Primark dress.

As a poor student, I am a big fan of Primark and I absolutely love this versatile swing dress which was only £5.  I occasionally wear it for work but I also love wearing it casually during the day if I'm out shopping or dressing it up for evening wear. I opted to wear it with tights as my legs are beyond pale right now! 


The boots I'm wearing are also from Primark and came in at about £15 I believe. I pretty much live in these boots and have worn them to work almost every day for the past half a year!  Normally I would have worn this dress out with some chunkier boots with a slight heel but I didn't bring them back home with me this Easter.   I think these boots still work perfectly fine though.


 Hair-wise, I washed it earlier in the day and let it dry naturally. I then used my GHD's to put a few natural-looking curls in my hair, as it tends to go slightly frizzy when I don't blowdry it. 




 In terms of jewellery, I wore a statement gold necklace I bought from New Look last summer for about £3 in the sale. The ring on my index finger was from a Primark multi-pack and the gold ring on my middle finger was from Camden Market.  I love picking up little pieces of jewellery from London markets as they tend to be a little bit different and more special than your average high street jewellery pieces.  The bracelets are from Primark and I think you get 6 or 8 in a pack for £2.  I keep these on my wrists permanently until they eventually break, but the last one I had on my ankle lasted over 6 months!  I always love to wear simple outfits, like this all-black outfit, and quirk them up with jewellery, particularly big statement necklaces.

On my face, I'm wearing the MUA Undress Me Too eyeshadow palette, Benefit's Roller Lash mascara and a Clinique chubby stick on my lips.

So there you have it! Have you ever bought one of the famous £5 Primark dresses? What did you think and how did you style it? I'd love to hear your thoughts!



Friday, 10 April 2015

Liebster Award Tag



I was nominated to do the Liebster Award Tag by the lovely Geena - go check out her beauty and lifestyle blog, she has some really interesting and varied reads that are so relatable :)

This is a great opportunity for small bloggers to also be heard! So let's start:

The rules of the tag:
  1. Thank and link the person who nominated you.
  2. Answer the nominator's 11 questions.
  3. Nominate 11 small blogs who have less than 200 followers (I cheated a bit here as some of my nomination have just over 200 followers on Twitter). You should believe that they deserve this award and include their link in your post.
  4. Create 11 new questions for your nominees to answer. Notify these nominees via social media/blog.

  • Why did you call your blog, the way you called it?
When I decided to start blogging, I wanted a quirky blog name that rolled off the tongue.  I knew I wanted to focus on affordable products from the high street to mirror my own budget - hence the inclusion of "High Street" in the name. And as we all know, beauty-buying/trying/reading/fascination can become quite an addiction, and so "High Street Beauty Junkie" was born!

  • If you could be any animal, which one would you be and why?
Anyone who knows me well will know that I have a slight obsession with pandas so I guess it would have to be that! They're so chill and can get away with anything because they're bare cute.

  • What was the craziest thing you have ever done?
Hmm hard one! Moving to London for a year for me has been pretty crazy - living with complete strangers (who I would now class as very good friends), working full-time on a wage of £0 and living solely off my student loan were all very big risks.  But I've loved the last 7 months and I'm gutted I only have 3 left!

  • Do you have any hidden talents, which one?
I can do the "impossible" and lick my elbow. For realsies. 

  • What would you do, If you were the other gender for one day?
I would pee standing up as much as possible, and just generally play with my new willy. If you say you wouldn't do this, you're lying. And have sex of course. Just because.

  • What do you like most about yourself?
In terms of appearance, I think the thing I like most about myself is my hair.  It's in pretty good condition because I've very rarely dyed it and it's naturally blonde which I think sometimes I take for granted!  In terms of personality, I like that I'm an open-minded person and I try to be as non-judgemental as I can!

  • What is your biggest pet peeve?
Following on from the last question, I tend to get annoyed by very close-minded people! Other than that, I have a pet peeve of continuous tapping noises when I'm trying to work - not ideal at the moment as there's a lot of building work going on where I work!

  • What is/was your most hated subject at school and why?
When I was at school I disliked geography and history - I was just really bad at them and gave them up as quickly as possible! It wasn't that I found them uninteresting, I just couldn't get my head around them!

  • If you had to change your name for some reason, how would you name yourself?
My full name is actually Charlotte so I've already shortened it to Charli which I much prefer! However, if I had to change it again I'd make it something fierce like Ruby or Jazmyn.

  • If you could only eat one food for the rest of your life, which one would it be?
Right now it'd have to be avocado.  I can never get enough!

  • Something more serious at the end: If you had to choose when you're going to die, which age would you choose and why?
Ooh this is pretty dark haha! I'd like to live a long, happy life but not so long that I can't do that much for myself towards the end of my life.  However, I think the key is to hold as many happy memories as possible which you're able to reflect on when you're older and have no regrets!


The beautiful and talented bloggers I am nominating are:
Hannah (@holabelleza_)
Paige (@Paige_1212)
Amy (@eadeyamy)
Antonia (@SweetPassions07)
Leanne (@LeanneDunnage)
Georgie (@_missgeorgiee)
Emma (@keepupwithkirby)
Alice (@MissAliceRed)
Lucinda (@LuciEvetts)
Arielle (@ariboo_blog)
Nikita (@nikitabatavia)


My questions to you are:

  1. What or who inspired you to start blogging?
  2. What is the one beauty product you can't live without?
  3. What is your favourite thing to do when you're feeling down?
  4. Who inspires you the most in life and why?
  5. What is your favourite season of the year and why?
  6. What is your favourite high street brand? (This can be fashion, beauty or both)
  7. Describe your perfect summer getaway?
  8. What would be your dream career?
  9. What are you most looking forward to this year?
  10. What is  your favourite genre of music?
  11. What piece of advice would you give to a newbie blogger?

I'd love to read your responses so tweet me at @Charli_bblogger or comment on this blog post when you complete it! xx

Friday, 3 April 2015

STUDENT RECIPE SERIES: Avocado Pasta


This is probably one of the easiest meals I have ever cooked and also one of the most delicious.  Even better, it's really cheap and pretty healthy too! For any recipes I post I'll estimate the total spent per serving, but obviously this will depend on where you're buying your food. I'm assuming you have cupboard items such as salt/pepper/herbs already.
 

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 avocado (4 for 99p at Morrisons)
  • 75-100g spaghetti (500g for 49p at Lidl)
  • Juice from 1/4 lemon (5 for 99p at Morrisons)
  • Dried herbs (coriander works well)
  • Pinch of salt/pepper
  • Pinch of chilli flakes (optional)
One serving = 40p!!!! (This seems so ridiculous haha but it's true! Morrisons sell small avocados so much cheaper than anywhere else I've seen - elsewhere they're at least £1 for just one)



METHOD:
  1. Cook the spaghetti for the recommended time stated on the packet (usually around 10-15 minutes).
  2. While the spaghetti is cooking, de-stone and peel off the skin of the avocado, chop up the inside and place in a bowl to mash.  It's best to use a very ripe (soft) avocado as it's much easier to mash up.
  3. Add a pinch of salt, pepper, lemon juice, chilli flakes and dried herbs to the mashed avocado.
  4. Drain the spaghetti when it's cooked to your liking, add the mashed avocado to the saucepan and mix over the heat.
  5. And that's it! If you're feeling crazy, why not chuck in some bacon or cherry tomatoes! As you can see it's not the prettiest dish, but it's so yummy and easy when you don't have the energy to cook anything extravagant.