Birmingham Diaries | Cocktail Cosmetics

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Weekend Post

Food Diaries | The Best Red Lentils

Disclaimer: Ok, Nigar hates this one- the only daal she'll ever eat is brown lentils. She doesn't eat/like certain things just because. I love this daal, the hubby loves it and mum loves it. Dad doesn't like anything that he hasn't cooked. 

Wellness Diaries | Matcha Tea

Matcha Tea: The new green tea but even better. Essentially matcha tea is green leaves grounded down to a powder. The entire leaf is the consumed rather than just steeped in hot water. It has a whole host of benefits attached to it; super high in antioxidants, cholesterol lowering properties, weight loss properties, and energy boosting powers. Not only is it an antioxidant (140 times more antioxidants than green tea) but also anti-inflammatory properties.
Matcha tea is also high in L-theanine which increases alpha waves activity in the brain, causing an increase in alertness and attention while also causing relaxation without drowsiness.

  There's all kind of "grades" of matcha tea (premium, ceremony, classic, cafe and kitchen grade) and it gets confusing, not to mention the prices vary so  drastically between grades and between brands.  So I just ordered the organic one from a brand I trusted (I use Clearspring Organic Premium Grade). Do not use boiling water as that will make it taste super bitter and grassy. Boil your water and let it cool before using. 


Place 1 teaspoon of matcha powder in a bowl
Break it up with a spoon to remove any lumps 
Pour water 
Whisk until frothy 
(using an battery powered one as it whisks faster than using a manual one)
Drink and feel the antioxidants power through your body

how to make matcha tea, clearspring organic matcha tea

how to make matcha tea, clearspring organic matcha tea

how to make matcha tea, clearspring organic matcha tea

how to make matcha tea, clearspring organic matcha tea

It does taste like green tea but a bit more intense. For the record green tea tastes like pond water (green tea is one of the few things I consume because of the way it makes me feel rather than because of taste). This makes you wake up feeling very skinny and clean. Also super great when you're bloated and need to de-bloat asap. 

how to make matcha tea, clearspring organic matcha tea

Ever tried it? Want to try it? Are you a green tea person?

Weekend Post

Travel Diaries | Nigar's Travel Experience.

Its already been just over a week! Dear Lord that's gone quick. Heres a recap of the actual travelling.

Oversized top; JDY (Via Asos) | Jeans; H&M | Cardigan; Primark 
Bag; Oasis ( Via Asos) | Shoes; Toms

I got the flight to Dubai on monday. 
I woke up early, walked! to argos, and got some new lighters 'holdalls' for my stuff. went home, packed and then made my way to town. I went for a haircut and blowdry at the Umberto Giannini salon in the Bullring, with Daniel, and left with fabulous hair that bounced everywhere. It lasted all the way till after I landed in MRU (Mauritius)! 

So I got to the airport, checked in, was over my allowance and had to remove stuff - some clothes, my yoga mat and my Nana's Bakhoor burner. Please keep in mind it was a woman who served me first. I then got a guy who let my 4KG over my allowance go. SCORE! Women on service counters can be such bitches. And as a woman, I am fully allowed to say that. 

So I sent my stuff, my then went up to security, said bye to my parents and off I went. I thought I had lost or left behind one of my makeup bags which had my miscellaneous items in, so none liquids. Like my beauty blender, my new sigma brush, my mirror, lip balm, and hair ties/clips. I didn't actually know what was in it till the flight when it all came back to me and my panic attack went from 3 to 8. Not a cheap bag to lose! Also, because I was running around trying to find someone who could help me, and the people were very friendly and helpful, I was very late to my gate. Very late.

So I got on the flight, sat next to a couple who kept kissing and taking selfies, and watched Lucy and Ek Villain. AND OMG. I asked for a Coke, and the lady asked if Pepsi was ok. :| 

I love that Emirates has this in their planes. They only turn it on at night and its like little stars! So pretty.

 Love looking at clouds. 

Arrived in Dubai at 7am local time. Got off the plane, and  headed straight for a McDonalds. I wanted Burger King, but alas there was none in my terminal. The McDonalds had no milkshakes, and I paid £10 for a burger. Well. 

Met a really nice man, purely platonic, while sitting in McDonalds and started talking to him. Passed the time and I got some good conversation in. 

Made my way over to my gate, sat down and then waited for it to open. When I got on the flight I realised how empty the plane was. We got the new airbus, which is huge, and in my 'compartment' of the place there was like .. 20 people? It was sooo empty. There were two women sitting next to me, but we all ended up sitting separately, and I had my three window seats to myself. I put on some Big Bang Theory, and then the fatigue hit me. I'd been awake since 8.30 the day before mind you. So I lay down and slept. It was such a good sleep. Landed in MRU at 4.30, went throught the whole shabang, and got picked up by my family. I didn't get a bus full of people which deeply upset me, just one car. 

It was a decent trip. I love travelling with Emirates. The food wasnt that great this time, but the entertainment made up for it. 

Travel Diaries| Hola Barcelona

In September, I went off to Barcelona with the hubby. We had an early morning flight and 4 hours later we were in Spain. We napped for a few hours and then headed out. It so happened it was a public holiday and Barcelona was celebrating their Patron Saint in the La Merce Festival. While shops away from the city centre were closed, everything in the centre were open. Their public transport ran like clockwork.

Weekend Post

Travel Diaries | What I packing - Shoes & Accessories

DIY | BODY SCRUBS: The Ultimate Coffee Scrub

DIY Frank's coffee scrub

Before I whipped this up I was convinced it wasn't going to do that much because a) hello, it's just coffee and b) it's pretty hard to beat my favourite body scrub. So I trailed it on other people first; Nigar and the hubby. They both said how "clean" they felt afterwards. And then I was like well I wanna feel clean. Know what I mean? Probably not ...

This is totally inspired by the Frank's coffee scrub that Instagram went crazy for a little while ago. At 15 dollars a pouch it is on the less pricey side of scrubs but come on do you know how many batches of these I can whip up for 15 dollars? A LOT 

Scrubs are one of those products that I never purchase because the DIY versions are so much better, not to mention cheaper. I really enjoy whipping up concoctions in my kitchen, there's just something so deeply gratifying in the process. 

Anyhoo, this coffee scrub is messy, so use in the shower. You will end up feeling like you have new skin, as it exfoliates and moisturises in a less oily way than my other favourite. Coffee on the skin is also great for combating cellulite. 


Ground coffee: 2 tbsp
Almond oil: however much you like
Sugar:1 tbsp
Salt: 1 tbsp
Essential oil of your choice: a few drops (I want to smell like grapefruits so I'm going to use that)
Vitamin E capsules: 2 (optional) 

To be honest I don't actually measure things out, I just add things to what I feel like so feel free to do the same.

DIY Frank's coffee scrub

DIY Frank's coffee scrub

DIY Frank's coffee scrub
Take that Frank's coffee scrub....

Mix all in a bowl, hop in the shower, scrub and rinse. All done. 
Now touch your skin, you'll keep wanting to touch it for a while....

Have a great week guys. 
Are you a scrub person? What is your favourite? 
TRY this and share your thoughts below 

Food Diaries: Spicy Butternut Squash Soup

Another ridiculously simply soup, following on from last week's spiced parsnip soup.
I make this at least once a week as the hubby likes it so much.

Travel Diaries | What I packing - Clothes

We're going to Mauritius over the Christmas holidays. I'm going for a significantly long time compared to mommy and Kay. I'm going for 57 days, or 1 month 27 days, or 8 weeks (rounded down). ooooooooooo! We are still hoping to blog, so don't worry guys! Mom and Kay will join me both individually. 

This post will be on what I am taking with me, along with a checklist for you guys to use if you need to! Lets keep a few points in mind before I start though:
1. I'm brown, so we have to prepare for events such as weddings, engagements, khatams, and other such asian things. 
2. I'm an over packer. I like being prepared for whatever I need to do.
3. It's easier to pack for a shorter holiday, so please take that into consideration! For such a long holiday there's so many variables, and let's not forget that wearing the same outfit 20 times will just kill me! I'm not a capsule wardrobe kinda girl. 

Lets get onto the outfits! (I've tried to link all the recent purchases)

 Short Dresses

Boohoo || Asos | Forever 21
| Asos | H&M| Asos |

Weekend Post

OOTD | Office Wear

So I've experimented with my office wear over the past few weeks for my internship. Sorry for not posting! Its difficult to take my own pictures and most of the time I was so exhausted I just couldn't be asked! And I wore a lot of the same outfits. 

I did notice towards the end that I was gravitating towards a shirt, jumper and jeans/trousers. This OOTD is basically just remastered everyday using one of my many blouses/shirts and jumpers. Warmth and style! 

New Look from a couple of years ago. No point investing in a new coat this year, at least not yet.
I love everything oversized. And if a jumper is oversized, then we're perfect for each other. From H&M - old.
Jeans from Zara
 Necklace and shoes both from New Look
Face of the day! 
Lipstick was MAC in Hug Me. 

Laters guys!  :D

Three Things Thursday | Mauritius Edition

This weeks 3 Things Thursday will be based on things I cannot wait to do when I'm in Mauritius.
NOTE: All photos are from 2009!

1. Street food.
I think everyone who travels back home, wherever that may be, looks forward to street food. We have this thing called confi (sp?), which is basically mangos, pineapple and cucumber, that has been kept in this salty water, and then they put it into a bag and add chillies and salt to it. BEST THING EVER! If you guys haven't tried your fruits with salt and chillies, you are missing out bro. Go do it now. 
Ok, so this was pineapple with PIMA! (chillies). Yummmmmm

2. Beaches
I mean come on. 
Will share better photos than this I swear. Also we know that random guy giving a thumbs up, he's not as creepy as he seems ;)

3. Hang out with family
We don't have that much family here, not as much as most my other brown friends for sure. So it's always nice to go see them. And I mean all of them. I love just sitting down with my Nana in his sweet shop and just talking, or even just sitting there. Language can be a bit of a barrier for me at times. I've never forgotten how to speak creole, but I do find that I add a few english words here and there when I'm not thinking about it. 
The great thing is that there are so many people whose houses I can go stay at, that I'm hoping not to get bored!
We hired a bus. To go to a beach resort. A BUS! Can you spot Kay?

3 Things Thursday is a weekly idea that three bloggers have come up with, Love Laugh MirchPink Chai Living, and The Write Balance. Do check them out!