Tuesday, 10 October 2017

Avenue Q at Leeds Carriageworks Theatre

At the end of September we headed to the Carriageworks Theatre, a small venue nestled away in the heart of Millennium Square, Leeds to see Avenue Q. A musical show with a twist in that all but two of the cast are puppets but the actors voicing and controlling the puppets can all be clearly seen on stage.

Be warned the use of puppets in no way means that this is a child friendly show, oh no. Think filthy Sesame Street and you'll pretty much have what Avenue Q is, a fun filled ride of puppet nudity, profanities and musical numbers such as 'The Internet is for Porn', 'Everyone's a Little Bit Racist' and 'You Can Be as Loud as the Hell You Want (When You're Makin' Love). In short we loved it!

On more than one occasion I was crying with laughter, the dark, crass humour was right up my street and Josh's too so we were bound to in stitches at line's such as "grab your dick and double click". The story follows Princeton, a recent college graduate who rents an apartment on Avenue Q. Whilst searching for his purpose in life he becomes well acquainted with the other residents, Brian and Christmas Eve (the only non puppet characters) who are ready to move on with their lives together, Nicky who suspects his friends and flatmate Rod is gay and just can't admit it, Kate Monster who dreams of opening her own school for little monsters, Trekkie Monster who has an addiction to porn and finally Gary Coleman the building superintendent. On his journey to discover his purpose, Princeton also meets the Bad Idea Bears and Lucy the Slut (and with names like that you just know they're going to spell disaster for Princeton!).  

Avenue Q far surpassed the high expectations I had of it. Diva Productions, a local theatre production company, did a fantastic job of creating their version of the extremely popular Broadway show. I'd definitely watch another show by them and I'd absolutely book tickets to Avenue Q again at the drop of a hat.

If you love your humour on the dark, filthy side I cannot recommend Avenue Q enough, seriously if you see a production of it, book tickets I just know you'll love it!   

Thursday, 5 October 2017

Lush Halloween and Christmas Wishlist

Oh Lush, I do love your autumn collections! There's so much stuff I'd like to try from across the Halloween and Christmas ranges this year. Along with trusty favourites such as the Luxury Pud and Butter Bear, I'm excited to try the new offerings such as Thundersnow and Christmas Sweater. I also need to treat myself to a bottle of Rose Jam shower gel this year as it smells amazing! 

What's caught your eye from the new collections?

Tuesday, 26 September 2017

Some things are hard to let go of

A quick calculation tells me that 7 years ago, I moved to Coventry for university. I don't know where that time has gone. All I know is that those 3 years I spent in that city are still some of the best years of my life so far and maybe that's why that period in time is so hard to let go of.

I last visited Coventry in 2014, which in itself is 3 years ago now. I've no idea what the city is like any more but if I close my eyes, I can map out the various paths we walked to university each day, I can see the shopping area lined with silver lights at Christmas, I can see each wonky medieval building down Spon Street and I can step inside The Old Windmill pub with it's cobbled floors and roaring fires. I can wander across the bridge that led us to the canal so many times for a sunny winter walk. I can place myself in the cathedral ruins, the place I was always drawn back to with its cobbled side streets, old style lamp posts and historical buildings all sharply contrasted with the new Cathedral and its rainbow of stained-glass windows, the place where after 3 years in that city, I graduated in. I remember first stumbling upon the ruins the day after we'd moved and every walk we took around that city after then seemed to lead me back there. My mind meanders back to the time we walked past the pubs in that area one weekend evening to seek the darkness of the university courtyard that lay just beyond the ruins so we could watch a meteor shower, sandwiched between the sounds of the nearby beer garden and the student union bar.

I remember the city centre studio apartment we called home for the entire 3 years we lived in Coventry, the food trucks that lined the streets outside our building and the sense of calm and quiet I felt every time we stepped outside of our building on a night and into what was a bustling shopping area during the day but a ghost town on a night. I remember the exact layout of our tiny apartment and the day I dyed our entire white bathroom red with hairdye on Halloween and then spent a whole week trying to remove the stains.

Each room I entered within the different university buildings has put a separate stamp on my memories. From the huge lecture theatre I learnt about IPA in, to the small classroom where we debated vampire literature, the window seat where I learnt creative writing techniques on cold winter evenings and reluctantly wrote poetry despite the fact that every creative fibre in me wanted to wrote stories. Finally, the modern newsroom where a portfolio careers was hammered into me for 3 years.

Of all the topics I've spoken about, of all the blog posts I've wrote in the past 6 years, this has to be the hardest, the rawest, the one that's brought tears to my eyes as I've typed. My life is so much different to that of a carefree student living in a tiny damp filled apartment in the middle of a city centre, a city, I should point out that wasn't even one of the nicest places you could go if we're going to think of some of the beautiful cities in this country. I have a job, I own a house in a nice village, with a bit of hard work and saving I'm able to book my dream holidays but I just cannot let go of that 3 year period of my life. The tears that prick my eyes won't subside even after all this time because I loved that place and that experience and I still miss it and yes, I'd go back in a heart beat.

I don't want to live in the past but I also don't ever want those memories to fade. I still want to close my eyes to the world and suddenly feel the sun on my skin and hear the reggae music from the time we went to the Godiva Festival in the War Memorial park. I still want to be able to remember the happiness I felt at visiting the Christmas market in Birmingham and coming home to warm pyjamas and a film. To feel the warmth of a hot drink between my hands from our weekly Starbucks Sunday's that eventually turned into Costa Sunday's but never quite had the same ring to them. To experience to snow fall in the cathedral ruins, perhaps the only time I've liked snow since I was a child, seeing those cobbled streets dusted in white, feeling the crunch under my feet and shivering as I looked up to watch the snowflakes fall about me.

It seems to me that during the warm July morning that I packed all my belongings into a van and left Coventry for good that I didn't quite bring everything back with me. Some small part of me has remained in that city ever since, pulling my heart back to that time, to a wonderful 3 years that I just can't let go of.

Sunday, 24 September 2017

Creating a cosy bedroom

What's better at this time of your then having a cosy, relaxing space to come home? I love to keep my bedroom homely and chilled out to create the ultimate space to relax in on a night. As the nights are starting to get colder and darker. I've begun to think how I can add some extra autumnal touches to my bedroom. Think candles, snuggly bedding and ALL the cushion scattered on the bed! With this in mind I've come up with three bedroom looks that I'm loving right now.


*sponsored content*

I love the clean and simple look of a monochrome bedroom. I think the big velvet and knitted cushions add some softness and warmth to the look and the candles would provide some beautiful autumn scents.


*sponsored content*

I absolutely love this look, to me this just screams autumn and I'd love to create a similar look in my bedroom. The reds, oranges and mustard tones are my absolute favourite colours for this time of year. I can't resist cinnamon scents in autumn either. I can just imagine falling into a big pile of those checked cushions and wrapping myself in the throw!


*sponsored content*

This look is probably the most similar to how I have my room now but I definitely need to swap out my lighter fragranced candles for something more suitable for the season. I've had these two candles before and they smell amazing. I really want some new cushions for the bed too. I like plain bedding so I feel like different patterns and textures on cushions really add some detail to the room, I've think the best cushion covers you can find online at Yorkshire Linen.

Which look is your favourite? 

This post is in collaboration with Yorkshire Linen. All opinions are my own.