Patriotic times.

I’m really disappointed in my lack of blogging in the past couple of months. Sorry. It’s a bit of a challenge when you’re working so much, but I thought whilst I’ve got a day off, I’d take the opportunity to Blog one out.

I am absolutely loving the high spirits our country is in at the moment. Despite the fact we have no money, no jobs and no water.(Although the latter one may have been resolved by the large amounts of rain we were recently exposed to!)
It doesn’t look like we’re winning too many medals at LONDON 2012, but hopefully Team GB will get themselves sorted out and go for Gold. I am very excited to be visiting the Olympic Park this week to watch China v Netherlands Woman’s hockey. I haven’t quite decided whom to support, but I will of course be donning my Team GB tshirt.

I even went out today in order to ‘pimp’ up my car….

I’m just hoping they won’t get nicked when I’m out! I’ve had to stick them on with double sided stickers as they definitely are not designed for my wing mirrors! They were only £4 from Sainsbury’s and I will be looking extremely cool whilst cruising around Bishop’s Stortford, that’s for sure!

Another reason why the Olympics is so great is because it gives us the opportunity to watch sports we would never usually make time for. I was learning the techniques of handball and table tennis earlier, whilst watching it on telly. It’s also a great excuse to enjoy the ‘talent’ of certain sports, such as Men’s beach volleyball and swimming. Whoever decided for the athletes to wear such little undies, needs to be knighted!

There’s a lot of controversy about all the empty seats floating about at the sporting events, especially with so many people unlucky to receive any tickets. One of the main reasons for the emptiness is because those areas are cornered off for trainers, families and friends etc or for the simple fact people haven’t turned up. I think they should of had a better system for empty seats, whereby they were able to reallocate on the day of the event seats that were not claimed. That way they still make money but make people happy too.

The London 2012 website had said they were to release more tickets this week to try and solve some of the mystery empty spots, but whether or not people were willing to pay some of the prices for them is another question. When looking earlier, I found swimming tickets for this week going for a steep £300, and they weren’t even the best seats! I’d want a three course meal and a foot rest for that!

Either way, I’m very much looking forward to my Olympic experience on Thursday and will be waving my GB flag with pride.

 

Blog ya later.

Low calorie Cake bake

So Is it possible? Do cakes taste as good once the yummiest high calorie ingredients are scrapped and replaced with a ‘lighter’ healthier option? Well I tried a bit of an experiment today although it didn’t go too well to plan…

CARROT CAKE CALORIE COUNT

I love baking. I’m not the world’s number one (although I like to think so once the apron’s on.) I’m also known to make a lot of mess. Flour up the walls, in the drawers, on the dog…

My best baking success is the carrot cake. I actually got the recipe from my children’s cookbook ( that was my mum’s subtle way on presenting me with a recipe book for idiots.)
The recipe has the perfect combination of moisture, sweetness and carroty goodness. If I give you the recipe, we couldn’t be friends as it’s my way to impress new people.
BUT, let’s just say it is high in sugar and fat, mainly because it is caster sugar and the tasty topping is made with mascarpone cheese.

So I wanted to experiment. I try to stay away from naughty temptations such as cake so I thought I’d try a lower calorie alternative to my usual calorific carrot cake.
Good ole Delia Smith helped me out here. This URL links you to her page where she gives her low calorie recipe.
http://www.deliaonline.com/recipes/cuisine/european/english/low-fat-moist-carrot-cake.html

Overall, the cake was just as nice as my original. The differences…
– My cake uses caster sugar whereas DS uses dark brown soft sugar instead for our sugary needs.

– I tend to use raisins, wheres as the low fat recipe uses sultanas.
(N.B, What’s the difference? Well raisins are made from dark grapes, sultanas are made from green grapes. A sultana tends to be a lot sweeter, more moist and less acidic so I guess that’s why Delia pops them in.)

– Delia throws in Orange zest and also drizzles homemade syrup on the cake as soon as it’s out the oven which gives it great moisture

– The biggest difference is the cheese. For the topping you need soft cheese mixed with various other ingredients. I usually choose mascarpone or Philidelphia, but generally any soft cheese really. The low fat option was QUARK. I don’t really know too much about this ingredient but it has very little fat in it compared to my cheesy favourites.

So, what cake won the bake battle? Well the only problem I had was that I actually forgot to put the dark soft sugar in and instead whacked in the caster sugar before I realised. So the only real difference was the cheese. And, I must say the Quark did me no favours. I found it quite sour and even though it’s mixed with cinnamon, caster sugar and vanilla extract, the taste was too strong for me and ruined the cake a little. My dad however actually quite liked it but did still agree my original was better.

THE ORIGINAL PICTURE (Ignore the fairy cakes, it was my dad’s birthday.)

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The sloppy NEW Picture…(half eaten)

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So to conclude… WHO CARES ABOUT CALORIES. A Cake is full of them whether you use brown, white or even green sugar!
I will be experimenting in the next few weeks with a low fat Victoria sponge just in case I’m taken by surprise. But if you would my ultra easy but amazingly tasty Carrot cake recipe, you’ll have to contact me for that!

I’ve left space…

THE MOON BOOT’s OFF…

Ahoy there. So I haven’t blogged for a few days so thought I’d write some random bits and pieces that have been happening in the last few weeks…

If you read my blog entry a few weeks ago about Lent, then Yes I am still sticking to it! After struggling for the first couple of days, I have slowly adapted to NO nice food. The hardest part of the whole thing is that my body is now used to the healthy food I’m eating and after losing five pounds I’ve stopped shedding the weight because unfortunately…

The twat broke her ankle- hi that’s me. So I’ve not been able to exercise in the gym. Won’t be getting the bikini bod i desired for three weeks and a bit till I jet off to Dubai for a week! Yer baby!

After spraining my ankle whilst slightly intoxicated and jumping off a platform in a club (yes I thought I had wings), I really weakened my foot and a few weeks later when we had the heavy snow fall I managed to slip over (this time sober) and chiped a bone in my ankle resulting in this…

 

To this… a very attractive boot… (Oh and Charlie my dog)

 

Almost 6 weeks later and I’m just about back to normal. My foot is achey at times and it’s going to be a long while until I wear heels 😦 but I did manage to put on a normal shoe today which was a massive ahievement after only being able to wear one for weeks!

Best thing about having a broken ankle… You don’t have to do a lot

Worse things… (there’s plenty)…

– When in a cast it’s such itchy to the extent you shove a pen down the side of the plaster. Problem with me was that I accidently left the pen on and when the doctor cut off my cast there were scribble marks all over my leg. He wasn’t impressed.

– You can’t walk on it for days. I managed to pull a muscle in both arms when using crutches for the first time until I googled how to use them properly.

– It’s always fun to lounge around doing nothing but four weeks later it gets a little tedious

– Oh, and you look like a complete nob when leaving the house in a space boot, especially on a night out when it doesn’t quite match your outfit.

 

SO all in all my advice is TAKE CARE, DONT wear heels if it’s forecasted to snow and ACCESSORISE that moon boot. God it’s ugly.

 

That’s pretty much been my life for the last few weeks. I’m back to work now earning the pennies and hopefully I’ll be driving again very shortly. In the last month, I’ve had to say bye to three friends who have all separately gone off around the world travelling. Lucky things.

BRING ON DUBAI. I’m getting pasty.

Festival frolics…

It’s that time of year again where I have to make the crucial and life changing decision of what festival to land myself in over the summer. Over the past four years I have made sure it has been a yearly event in my life. For any of you who have been to a festival before, you know they are quite simply AMAZING and just as good as a holiday.

This year was definitely a hard choice. All my friends decided months ago we would go to V Fest this year as it’s nearby (Chelmsford) and would be a great thing for us all to do. The line up was released last night and definitely had mixed reviews. I don’t think the headliners are the best… I was expecting Coldplay atleast, but I think the rest of the names are pretty great. I’m extrmely excited about David Guetta because I haven’t been lucky enough to see him yet. (He was at T in the Park the year I was there but they closed the tent because it was far too crowded so I didn’t even get a glimpse! )

If you haven’t seen the 2012 lineup yet, here it is…

I can’t say I’m really looking forward to the headliners on Saturday night so I’m hoping Nicky Minaj and David Guetta will headline on one of the other stages. If I wasn’t going to V Fest (or had loads of money to spend) I would definitely make my way to Kinross for T in the Park and maybe travel over to Belgium for Tomorrowland.
Do you know what will be make me even happier?  If Florence and the Machine, Swedish House Mafia, Two Door Cinema Club and Chase & Status all decide to swing by the fields of Chelmsford and perform. Pretty pleaseeeeeeeeee 🙂 Let’s wait and see/pray!

Anyway, I thought I would share with you my festival frolics over the years in pictures.

GLASTONBURY 2008
My first ever festival with my friend David. The one where Amy Winehouse hit someone in the crowd, I squeezed Mark Ronson’s bum and stood at the front of the main stage for 8hrs straight desperate for a wee.

READING FESTIVAL 2009-
Best atmosphere ever! The one where we got so drunk we totally missed half the acts we had been waiting to see all day… Good times!


T IN THE PARK 2010-
I hadn’t really heard much about this festival until that year. Amazing line up.  The one where we saw a drunkard roll around getting covered in mud and then got arrested. HA.

Isle of Wight Festival 2011-
The one where I won two free tickets with Sky Arts on Twitter! I never win anything! And it was great timing because I’d decided I couldn’t afford any festivals in 2011 but then fell in to luck by winning tickets. Only bad thing about this festival was that it rained so much on the Sunday and our tent got trashed/flood resulting in my best friend Chloe wrapping herself in a bin bag to keep warm over night! The day before was the complete opposite and we were tanning on our camping chairs. So much so, that I had a hand print mark embedded on my leg for weeks after… (Someone was going round doing handprints on people’, but I managed to get a tan round mine leaving a rather obvious mark!)

BOARDMASTERS 2011-
Surfer and Skater festival in Newquay- The one where my best friend bought me tickets for my 21st and we inhaled alcohol oxygen. What a babe. I went from going to no festivals in 2011 to two!

It’s made me so excited for this year after looking through all those photos! I’m going with a great group of people and it’s going to be amazing! BRING ON THE SUMMER! But for any of you who want to treat me to something nice, feel free to buy me tickets to any of the other great festivals this year!

In the next few weeks I’ll be blogging about the best festival tips, so watch this space…….

 P.s. Only just reading Blog’s your Uncle for the first time? Why not flick for my other articles or pages 🙂 

 

 

Day 1: CANTANKEROUS

Day 1 of Lent… WEDNESDAY
It was so hard and it’s only been 24 hours!  I remember when we were at School, this was Ash Wednesday, the day we were smeared with black dirt on our foreheads and shouted at if we even thought about wiping it off. What rebels us Catholic girls were…

Everyone seems to have very little faith in me and think I’m going to fail but not this girl! That gives me even more drive to stick to my Lent promises. My biggest problem is that I’ve eaten so much food in the last few months but my stomach doesn’t seem to know what’s hit it.

Today’s menu wasn’t too bad…
Breakfast: Small bowl of Blueberry Shredded Wheat
Snacks: Banana, Apple, Grapes
Lunch: Pate on toast

So by about 6pm, my stomach was growling at me and I felt really miserable because my stomach wasn’t happy so the feeling reciprocated! I was really looking forward to this new prawn pasta dish my dad was trying out for the first time. One word: DISGUSTING.
It wasn’t dads fault because he was just following a recipe, but for some reason, one of the main ingredients was lemon zest and a lot of it. So I had the worst after taste ever and as you can imagine, I picked out the prawns and tried to wipe the revolting sauce of the pasta. What a fail.
So all in all, I went to bed a hungry pup. Bring on day 2…

For Jesus I’m giving up…

It’s that dreaded time of year when I force myself to give up my favourite things and become unhappy and miserable for 40 days and 40 nights. BUT… I know that it does me good especially because I still haven’t started my Christmas detox.
I seem to be addicted to sugar and get in really bad greedy habits so enough is ENOUGH.

I don’t really do the whole Lent thing for religious reasons. Obviously growing up at a Catholic school we were encouraged to give up something or do something extra in the lent period. So i guess I’ve got in the yearly habit of doing the whole Lent thing.
My pancake day was definitely delicious this year but D Day begins tomorrow…

Here is the dreaded List…

Follow me on twitter…

Just to say.. my webcam definitely does me no favours! My first video for Blog’s your uncle makes me look very goofy. Deary me. Maybe I’ll stick to radio.

Anyway…

I’m back on full steam on the twitter scene. Add me and we can tweet up @KatieDoyle_

It’s a new year and my resolution list became very long. I managed to cut them down to my top 3:

1. Read at least one book a month (FAILED)

2. Go to the gym atleast three times a week (FAILED)

3.  Look for jobs (TBC)

As you can see it hasnt been the most successful of January’s. Number one is totally my fault. I really thought I’d enjoy snuggling in to bed half an hour before sleep time to read a lovely novel, but it seems I would rather lounge on the couch and catch up on the latest telly or I’m socialising. When i’m on holiday I read loads, but I cant seem to get in to the right mind set when I’m at home. I have managed to read 90 pages of Dawn French’s first novel which I am enjoying but I cant seem to get in the right mindset to chill out and delve in to the creative mind set!

The gym resolution is half not my fault. Well it is, because I broke my own ankle but I didn’t plan for this to actually happen. I was doing quite well until I sprained my ankle back in January (after jumping of a stage in 6 inch heels…). After two weeks out of action I had two gym sessions before I then slipped in the snow a few weeks ago resulting in a broken ankle 😦 So It’s still going to be a fair few week’s before I’m back working up a sweat in the gym vicinity.

And the final one… I’m always on the look out but it is hard when already working full time. I am currently on this pointer whilst housebound! So fingers crossed something good comes up soon…

But moving on from that, you just wait and see my Lent list. (Just to clarify, I do have a little bit of a OCD on lists. I like to keep organised, but more to the point, I don’t have the greatest memory so writing down things definitely helps!

POODLE CHOP

I have so much to share with you lovely people. This past few weeks have been absolutely hectic. I’ve turned 21, got a gorgeous puppy, I now have a car, I’ve jetted off to Lanzarote and Edinburgh as well as a winning two free tickets to the Isle of Wight Festival!
In the past few days I’ve just celebrated my graduation and now I’m definitely on a graduate downer.

But first things first. I suppose you want to know why I haven’t been blogging. My third and final year at Uni was such hard work. All my assignments seem to come all at once and I was so dedicated, I was even at Uni on the weekend! My course was good as we didn’t have to write a dissertation, but instead put together a portfolio which consisted of making our own radio and tv package as well as an online article. It sounds  A LOT easier than it was, but I was very proud with my outcome. I’ll be posting my work on my blog once I’ve figured out how to get it off my dvd. Any technicians out there!?

On 6th May, Uni was all over and I was ‘free.’ The feeling was a mixture and relief and nerves as I had no idea what the next few months would bring. If only I could tell myself at the time, that the feeling would not change two months on.

Anyway, I definitely enjoyed my last couple of weeks up in Preston and of course I made the most of it!

THE PUPPY
So, I now am the proud honour of a toy poodle. Well, It’s obviously shared by the family but he is a stunner. His name’s Charlie and he’s about 14 weeks old now. We got to visit him and his brother’s when he was first born and I couldn’t believe the amazing sight.
(n.b. The only pets I have had in the past are fish. Goldfish. I somehow managed to have one that got a brain tumour and the other one was replaced three times- I only found this out on my 18th birthday! R.I.P Gin and Tonic.)

I was at Uni when mum and dad had the exciting chance to choose the puppy (out of three) when they were all big enough. Charlie definitely stood out to them and we took him back to our house at 8 weeks. We’ve always wanted a dog, but we wanted to wait till the time was right and when there would be someone at home as my mum and dad have always worked full time and I’ve always been at school/uni.


He is a great dog and still very small. He slept a lot when we first got him but now he’s as crazy as ever.

 

<<< When we first got Charlie home (7 weeks)

“OMG my dog looks camp.”

Yes you did read right. Charlie is a toy poodle. But this type of dog is not meant to look like your typical poodle. They are less fragile and very cuddly and look like teddy bears. Charlie was gorgeous until… we visited the vets. This was a very sad day.

 

So as novice dog owners we were doing everything by the dog manual we had bought.  After about 12 weeks it’s time for a puppy to have their first haircut, a joyous occasion, the book described it as.
Hmmm, I probably wouldn’t describe it quite like that. So basically… Dad and I took Charlie to the local dog groomers. She was in love with Charlie as soon as she spotted eyes on him and assured us everything would be fine and to come back in an hour. We said several times we did not want the traditional poodle cut and simply wanted an all over body trim. She nodded and scooped the cuddly lump up.
So an hour later we headed back up to collect Charlie but the sight we saw was not how we imagined. In fact, dad noticed a small poodle through the window and I assured him this couldn’t possibly be Charlie. But yes, the camp looking dog through the window was my puppy.
She had cut him like a poodle! All the hair from around his face had GONE. His curls had turned in to a massive frizz ball and don’t get me started on the feet. It looked like he was wearing heels.
Yep. Our dog was ugly. And we were quite speechless. It took me a few days before my mum or I could take Charlie on a walk. Mean? Maybe, but if you had seen him, you wouldn’t want to be seen with the pup.
Luckily that was a couple of weeks ago and his puppy character shown through and he’s back to normal (almost.) Our friend who we got Charlie off gave him a nice trim (not like a poodle) and he now looks a very smart, normal toy poodle.

BEFORE:  (taken 10 minutes before THE CHOP)
 

 

AFTER: See what i mean now!
 

Not to self: Don’t go back to the groomer and make sure they are listening to you properly with eye contact before they start marking kissing noises whilst in a stare at your innocent pup!

Next on the agenda… Isle of Wight Fest. How on earth did I get free tickets….

Blog’s your uncle is BACK and BETTER than ever…

So, i would like to apologise for… the fact that my blog has been inactive for the past few months, but boy has it been a busy 2011.

My blog is back and will updated reguarly with random thoughts, general chit chat and what I’ve been up to.

I have so much to tell you. If you’ve never been on my blog before, please come on more often and enjoy my rabbiting on. I think you will quite like it.

For new readers, I’ll quickly tell you who on earth is writing this blog.

I’m Katie, 21 and have just graduated from University of Central Lancashire with a 2:1 in BA(hons) Journalism. What an amazing three years!!!! You will definitely hear more about my student life on this blog.
I’m currently looking for a job in the Journalism or travel industry. I love travelling and would love to travel the world and get paid for it! I specialised in Broadcast Journalism at Uni so I’m very interested in the radio and tv sides of things.
Any suggestions on what I should do in life… or if you know of any job vacancies… let me know!


To be continued…