FASHION/ Cute but savage (but cute)

Another day, another sassy slogan tee…how do they all manage to sum me up in very different ways?!?Rock on Ruby cute but savage but cute t shirt, Topshop lace up jeans, Public Desire multi colour slides, silver mirror cat eye sunglasses

I feel that people often presume I’m more on the ‘cute’ side – friendly, agreeable, just kind of there to do whatever when asked.

Rock on Ruby cute but savage but cute t shirt, Topshop lace up jeans, Public Desire multi colour slides, silver mirror cat eye sunglasses

However, there’s definitely a ‘savage’ side that comes out to play when needed – I have a fiery temper, I’m pretty opinionated and I will argue my corner if I think I’m right. I try to keep it a nice kinda savage, but sometimes a gal just has to take it from 0-100 to by her point across!

Rock on Ruby cute but savage but cute t shirt, Topshop lace up jeans, Public Desire multi colour slides, silver mirror cat eye sunglasses

This tee is great for throwing on for any kind mood: having a casj/cool day – tuck into some mom jeans, sassy day – tie it up and chuck on some black skinnies and heels. Fat day? No problemo – let it hang loose and you can eat pizza without fear…hehe.

Rock on Ruby cute but savage but cute t shirt, Topshop lace up jeans, Public Desire multi colour slides, silver mirror cat eye sunglasses

One of these days I may even work out what to do with my hands and face in photos!

Tee, Rock on Ruby* / Sunnies, eBay / Jeans, Topshop (similar version here) / Sliders, Public Desire

Thanks to the fabulous Emma for these pics – we went for a little walk one Friday evening to The Bankside Gallery – an industrial area that spray paint artists have transformed into a creative outdoor space of colour and inspiration in the city. What a fabulous way to reclaim an area that’s been unloved for many years. If you’re in Hull, I’d definitely encourage you to take a look, new areas are being added all the time and you may be lucky enough to catch some of the art being created!

Thanks for reading,

J xx


FOOD/ My top #HullFoodie hangouts (Season 2, 2018)

I can’t believe we’re ANOTHER month down on 2018 already! As well as working hard on my 5 Things for 2018 I’ve been busy curating part 2 of my #HullFoodie hangouts (you can remind yourself of part 1 here) some of them are old faves revisited, some are places I’ve only just gotten round to trying. Prepare to be hungry…

Thieving Harrys

(Photos by Emma)

If you want a brunch that’s yummy and suitably basic bitch enough for the ‘gram, TH is the place. It’s just across the way from where I’ve been living for the past few months but I’d never managed to make it in before a girl’s trip one sunny Saturday morning. Since I’ve tried a few different things on the menu – my top pick is these delicious pancakes.

Francesca’s

I’ve previously done two reviews about this place (the most recent one is here) and tried a variety of their menu – pizza, pasta, salad, sides, its all delicious. They’re often running special offers too so you can either save money or (as I do) order more food for the same price.

Millhouse

This place is a long standing favourite – it’s usually where we spend our anniversary or treat ourselves to a ‘proper’ Sunday lunch. The food here is a la carte and priced accordingly, though it’s still fairly reasonably and very tasty indeed. The decor is lovely and the drinks selection is good too, the only slight quibble I have is that the service can occasionally be a bit haphazard.

Craft and dough

(image credit: Instagram tag)

More pizza, you say? Oh yes, and this one is quite special… They’re a whole metre long! In a great location on Newland avenue you can bag a delicious doughy treat (they do half metre sizes too, which are still pretty epic) yummy cocktails and a round of beer pong if you fancy it. These beauties even bested me, which NEVER happens when pizza is involved, but they make a great lunch with a bit of salad the following day.

Tapasya

If you want fine dining with a twist, Tapasya is where you need to be. I visited in March and sampled a variety of their Asian cuisine (You can read about my recent visit here) which was amazing quality. If you think you’re a connoisseur of Indian food, you need to give this place a visit for the whole experience. I can’t wait to go back with the Mr.

thanks for reading,

J xx


FASHION / Thank you my love

One chilly (and ever so slightly snowy) afternoon, a group of Hull Bloggers gathered to eat, drink, chat, coo over baby Jasper (Violet’s adorable bubba) and snap some pics…

I learnt during this time that I can also do two other facial expressions as a variation to my usual RBF – the ‘I look innocent but am totally plotting something (above) and ‘oops, you caught me doing the eye-roll’ (below)

This jumper is so bobbled now because I’ve worn and washed it to death since buying it last year (it’s a take on the popular whit boyfriend tee, which I also own) it’s really easy to chuck on and is a flattering length to hit the top of high-waisted jeans without making you look too bulky (sadly it can’t minimise my love handles, but it doesn’t make ’em look any worse. Cake takes care of that.)

Totally living for these Primarni trousers too! I was going to pick up a similar pair elsewhere that were about £30 in a jogger style, however these were a bargain £11 and just as comfy because they’re made from jogger- type material. They also have the Adidas style poppers to play around with the proportions and keep cooler in the summer hopefully. I’m optimistic it will be warmer!

Props to Amy and Courtney for taking the pics.

Jumper, Topshop (sold out online) / Trousers, Primark / Boots, Ankle boots

Hope you all have a lovely #Easter weekend and thanks for reading,

J xx


FASHION / Oh hey there Mrs

On this day 8 years ago, I became Mrs Barrett. It was the start of a new chapter that has brought challenges, support, a lot of happiness and ‘laugh until you can hardly breathe’ moments, and I wouldn’t swap my Mr for the world. Ultra soppy but very true – he’s got 99 problems and ‘dis bish is the biggest one!

Thanks to my faves Rock on Ruby for teaming up with Bespoke Bride for a sassy range of bridal-related tees right when I needed them most! They’re the same brilliant quality as usual, I’m wearing a size M which was fitted but still a bit loose so was really comfy.

Shout out to these trousers, which are adorable and ridiculous comfy – they feel great and are meant to be culottes, but I’m a short-ass so they look more like half-mast trousers… also sharing a little pic at my cute heart tattoo, which rarely gets an outing.

T-shirt, Bespoke Bride x Rock on Ruby / Jacket, Topshop / Trousers, Topshop (similar here) /Trainers, Adidas / Sunglasses, Missy Empire

Thanks to Emma for taking these pics.

and, just in case you haven’t seen enough of my wedding pics over the years, here’s another…

Thanks for reading,

J xx


FOOD / #HullFoodie … Tapasya*

Think you’re an Indian food connoisseur? Think again. Unless you’ve tried fine dining Asian style, you’ve only tasted the tip of the iceberg!

I was recently invited (along with some of my best girls) to try out the brand new menu at Tapasya Beverley Road, created by their brand new chef.

This is restaurant I used to pass every single day on my way to work since it opened a few years ago – I always thought it looked beautiful (and smelled Devine) and vowed I’d give it a try one date night, but never got round to it. So a girly night out it was!

The restaurant has lots of beautiful and ornate touches – from the floating flowers and tea lights to sultry dark wood finishes and sparkling chandeliers the scene it set for class (and of course, great shots for the ‘gram).

As well as a cloakroom (classy) and car check-in (high-tech and comfortingly secure) there’s a ridiculously well stocked bar – whatever your tipple of choice is you’re likely to be in luck; however I was driving so no alcohol for me this time. I’m not a beer drinker but I opted for a non-alcoholic Cobra…a gal’s gotta get into the spirit!

We kicked things off with a cheeky amuse bouche – vegetable samosa with tamarind dressing encased in the most delicately crunchy and golden pastry I’ve ever eaten (I’m a prolific lover of pie, so I’ve tried a few!)

Starter – Purani Dheli Ki Aloo Tikki

I’m gonna skip to the good bit – it tasted as good as it looks! Cumin and potato cakes wrapped around moorish soft cheese drizzled with tasty chutney. This is an amazing combo of comfort food with fine dining. For me, it doesn’t get much better.

Main course – First class railway lamb curry

I ordered this purely because it has an interesting colonial heritage behind it – this dish is served on first class railways throughout India and used to be pretty spicy; until a British official found it too hot and asked for it to be toned down. That’s pretty much talking my language! I adore food that’s rich in flavour but struggle with food that’s too spicy.

I was really surprised at the presentation of this dish when it arrived, it looks more like a posh Sunday lunch than a curry. The sauce is in the little jug at the back of the plate (which made a great Boomerang for my Insta-story. Of course.) and was the perfect combination of mild and flavoursome without being ridiculously on the creamy side. Absolutely perfect.

On the side – all the things

That’s the only way to describe it – can’t decide? Just order it all to share out family style! As well as the Saag Makai (creamy spinach and corn. If you like Saag Aloo, you’ll enjoy this) and Dal Tadka (yellow lentils; a house speciality) pictured we had a selection of naan breads and basmati rice. Aside from saying it all tasted good (may sound like a cop out but true story) everything complemented my main course, and everyone else’s, perfectly.

To finish – Kala Jamun

These ‘mini oodles’ of reduced milk soaked in sugar syrup were the perfect way to round off a beautiful meal – dusted with a coconut and served with creamy vanilla pod ice cream, the portion is big enough to satisfy your sweet tooth without being sickly.

I’ve not had the best experience with Asian-inspired desserts in the past, so I’m pleased that I’ve been introduced to some different (and wickedly delish) options on Tapasya’s menu.

As you may have gathered, my overall verdict is that I really rate this menu! There’s plenty of choice for carnivores and veggies to enjoy, the menu is pretty inclusive so I think even those who would say they don’t like curry would find something they’d really enjoy. It’s just great food! The price point makes it somewhere you may not be able to head every weekend – but if you’re looking for a fine dining experience in East Yorkshire, this is somewhere you should plant firmly on your radar.

Thanks for reading,

J xx


LIFESTYLE/ Happy New Year! 5 things for 2018

A very happy New Year to you all! I sincerely hope that 2018 continues to bring you joy and happiness, as well as presents you with some surprises and challenges to bring you even more. To kick off the new year I thought I would share my top five goals for the year ahead – they vary between the general and specific, the superficial and the real, nevertheless they’re all pretty important to me: 

Find a new home 🏡

We sold our house back in September and just haven’t one that’s felt like “home” to us yet, as well as ticked all our boxes (and there aren’t that many to tick, which it makes it more frustrating). However, we are going into the year hopeful that the right house is out there waiting for us.

Smash my new job 💻

I will be starting a new job imminently by the time you read this, eek! I don’t mention work very often on my blog as I’m very keen to keep the two separate, but I’m very excited about this new opportunity. It gives me a chance to progress along my new career path, develop new skills and take on some new challenges, which I’m so down for.

Get back to my happy weight ⚖️

Personal and professional factors have contributed to a rather large weight gain over the past couple of years, which is disappointing given that I slogged my guts out for four years trying to shift it in the first place (and another three years keeping it off). The good thing here is that I’ve done it before so I know I can do it again and feel like my life is turning a much more positive corner to allow change to happen.

Have eyebrows on fleek 💉

I’ve been self conscious about my brows for years now – this is down to my teenage self over plucking as it was the 90s (nobody told you how to do these things right) and they never really recovered. So I’ve taken the leap and decided to get them tattooed; this is a pretty big deal considering that I’m petrified of needles (I usually feel physically sick at the thought of them) but I’m trying to be brave and focus on how much better I will feel when they’re done.

See more of the UK 🇬🇧

I’ve been thinking a lot about my next travel destinations over the past few weeks, and have realised that I’m very poorly travelled around my home country. I’ve decided to change me travel goals and make exploring some UK cities a top priority; this may work well considering that I’ll be making a couple of big purchases this year (a house and a car) so somewhere far flung isn’t that achievable. I still plan to go abroad too but probably somewhere closer to home, still somewhere that I haven’t been before.

So those are my main priorities for the year – I’m sure as things happen towards achieving each goal I will put up som related posts – hopefully this means there’ll be more travel and lifestyle content in 2018, as well as getting back to my number one passion (and the reason I started blogging int he first place) fashion. Hope to see you there.

Thanks for reading,

J xx


BLOGMAS day 9: Home made hot chocolate (and the cutest festive mug to drink it in)


At this time of year I love making my own hot chocolate, which usually has a lil’ extra kick to it, so thought I’d share one of my favourite recipes. Really easy, pretty quick and very tasty!

Spiked peanut butter hot chocolate:

50g milk chocolate

200ml milk

70mls Marks & Spencer Chocolate & Peanut cream liqueur

Marshmallows

Whipped cream

1. Place a small pan on medium heat and add the chocolate milk. Stir gently and continuously until the chocolate melts and the milk is a smooth brown colour.

2. Add in the liqueur and continue to stir until all the liquid looks blended together.

3. Drop in a few marshmallows and allow them to melt a little.

4. Remove from heat and serve in a cute AF mug. Decorate with whipped cream and a sprinkling of marshmallows.

Enjoy!

This recipe has a ‘make it up as you go along’ vibe so you can sub out ingredients to suit your own preference. My top swaps for this recipe are:

– Chocolate: using dark chocolate will add more depth of flavour, whereas white chocolate will make your drink creamier.

– Alcohol: dark rum, Irish cream and whisky all work well with chocolate. With dark chocolate you could even add a small amount of red wine (yes, really!)

– Decoration: for extra sass add a mini flake, chocolate sprinkles or edible glitter.


And of course, a super cute festive mug to serve your chosen creation in! I bought a pair of these from Primark for me and the Mr to use throughout December.

If you have a good recipe of try out a variation of mine please do let me know in the comments!

Thanks for reading,

J xx