19 June 2015

The Botanist Manchester

Hello beautiful people!

Manchester is a great city – so vibrant, energetic and happy. The people are lovely and there’s always so much to do. One thing I love about Manchester is its incredible variety for places to eat. I am a big fan of food.. I love a good meal! I especially enjoy independent cafes and fancy restaurants, both of which there are lots of in MCR. One of the nicest places I have been to is a high end restaurant/bar called The Botanist.

The ambiance! Oh my. Inside The Botanist is garden/floral/nature themed. Just like the name suggests. It’s absolutely breath-taking. The mix with a vintage yet retro feel just makes it even more special. I am someone who can only truly love a restaurant if the atmosphere is good – just good food doesn’t give it a place in my top 5. Staff are lovely too, always a bonus as customer service is very valuable. They have live music there which is a great touch and can really add to make your evening special. 

So now the main thing.. the food! Their menu is not super diverse, but still has a decent variety. The food itself tastes heavenly and they give good size portions. Presentation is also something to look out for, as they serve their food on ‘garden’ themed utensils. Very pleasing to the eye! There is a very large drinks menu with some really good things on there. I have only ever tried a mocktail as I don’t drink alcohol, which tasted delicious.

The food featured is a selection from their 'deli board' that I ordered - humous, bean salad, salmon & potato salad, which came with a large piece of Turkish flat bread
Their famous chandelier!
Overall, I would suggest that if you’re visiting MCR for a few days or are just looking for a nice place to eat here, try The Botanist. It’s definitely a place to impress. It’s certainly in my top 5 places to eat in MCR (and I have been to a lot of places!) I think I am going to go there to celebrate my birthday too.. haha.. I’ll have been there too often before I leave! I would recommend making a reservation first as they are usually very busy and all booked up!
Have you tried The Botanist? Is there anywhere in MCR that you would recommend going to before I leave MCR?

Lotsssssss of yummy and tasty love,
Ayesha xxx

6 June 2015

There is always at least one reason to smile..

Hello gorgeous people!

I'm still alive.. hehe.. sorry for being in hibernation! My Master's degree has been my main priority. But now I am exam and assignment free! Well.. I say that, but technically I'm more busy, as I'm conducting research and doing my dissertation.


How are you all? I was thinking of being a little positive again (woop woop). Everyone has some form of stress going on at some point in life, but it's important to keep your chin up and stay strong. Being resilient to the negative events is what makes someone strong and able to cope - so I've learnt (and studied actually).

You've probably got one worry or the other. One thing going wrong, one thing upsetting you, someone hurting your feelings, someone bothering you, lots of studying, arguments at work.. bla blaaaaaaaaaa. The list of negativity can go on.

But, how often do we focus on the positives? There are always SO many things to be grateful and thankful about. One of the simplest ones is the fact that you have your eyesight, if you're reading this. Not everyone has that. And then the other things in life we take for granted (our body, food, shelter etc). 

Let's get a bit more personal though. Think of something that you have that is important to YOU. It could even be a pet. You know best what makes you happy. Think of reasons that you can smile about, not reasons to be sad for. 

At the end of each week, write down five good and positive things that happened for you in a diary/notebook. Don't even think about the negative! They don't have to be big either - anything small that made you feel good. When you start to count your blessings, you will focus less on the bad things in life. Hopefully you will be happier that way. I'm just trying to be a little blunt.. I know things are never that easy.. Then at the end of the month you can look back and realise how good your month has been. You can even look at this when you feel down and need something to cheer you up.

Okay I'll go first. Five good things for me in the past week:
1. I finally started getting participants for my research study
2. I ate some raspberries (I loveeeee berries!)
3. I got a good grade on my hardest assignment 
4. I saw my parents
5. I spent time with friends

Here's some flowers because they make me happy :)
Sometimes it's best to 'let go' of the things that stress you. We don't always have to try fight - just let it go. Set yourself free from the stress. If you do that, no one can possibly change the way you feel about it. Don't let anyone get to you. If you are strong in yourself, you will not care. :D

Okay stay happy and smiling everyone! Love you all!
Ayesha xxx

27 March 2015

Teacup Kitchen Manchester

Hi lovelies!

I've never written a blog post on a cafe or restaurant before, but I felt this place needed a mention. I went to Teacup Kitchen in Manchester (Northern Quarter) with a friend earlier this week as we wanted to try somewhere new, preferably an independent cafe. Teacup are more than just a cafe though, they serve food and drinks too, as well as some of the most delicious freshly baked cakes!

Their ambiance was great - vintage yet contemporary. Service was even better - all of the staff were so friendly and helpful! I hate places that have really rude staff - being kind and polite to your customers reflects well on the business. Teacup though, I can assure you are lovely. My friend and I took a ridiculous amount of time to decide what to get; there were so many choices and I'm indecisive! They were very patient though and actually helped haha :P 

By the way, I'm not being sponsored for this post if you think that's why I'm raving so much about them! Haha. I did genuinely like this place and I want to go back soon. I need to try their brunch and have some more heavenly mocha! Oh and maybe more cake.. *cough*

They had a little sand timer so we knew when the tea was ready!

Did those photos tempt you? Can you SEE the brightness of the rainbow cake?! My goodness, take me back please. I sound a little obsessed, but, I love to eat :P Not even ashamed! Have any of you been there? Do you know of any other nice places in Manchester that I should check out? But yeah, if you're ever in Manchester check them out! :D

Eat lots of yummy things and stay happy,
Ayesha xxx

P.s. good food is the key to my heart. Literally.

23 March 2015

Sharing positivity

Hi lovelies,

There are times in our lives and times in lives of people we love when things get really difficult. Sometimes it's hard to see the light at the end of the tunnel. But I promise you, the sun is always shining behind the grey clouds. I am a firm believer that everything happens for a reason - even what we may not like is for the best.. we just don't always know it.. 

I'm writing this post to share a quote I read today:

"You're going to go through tough times - that's life. But I say, 'Nothing happens to you, it happens for you.' See the positive in negative events." 
- Joel Osteen

A photo I took! Just because you only see one rose coloured pink, doesn't mean that the actual colour (and value) of the other roses is any less. Sometimes it is just a matter of perspective (I feel like a philosopher haha).

Obviously adhering to this quote's message is so much more easily said than done. But maybe if we try to be more optimistic and keep an open mind, things may seem easier and more bearable. We should allow life to take its course, and with due time we should hopefully realise that what negative happened before, has provided the opportunity for something more positive to come out of it.

That is all. Stay happy,
Ayesha xxx

7 March 2015

Flowers make me happy :)

Hey beauties!

Hope you are all doing well :) The weather is looking a little nicer recently, with the sun shining while it is still cold. Spring is.. coming! Maybe! Haha. You can't really trust British weather though..

For me, I love to have a vase full of flowers in my room - it just brightens up my mood and makes my room feel beautiful. It's so nice to just wake up in the morning and have pretty flowers to look at! And no, it's not necessary that someone buys you flowers - you can just buy some yourself when you do your regular shop at Tesco (or Sainsbury's/Morrisons/Asda.. haha). Buy them from anywhere you want, I'm just saying that it's not hard to find a good bunch of flowers :P

I do love all flowers pretty much. I think probably because I love nature. Currently I have some divine white roses on my desk. White roses have to be my favourite type of rose.. ah.. they are charismatic and yet so understated at the same time. I could go on more about them to be honest.. I really appreciate white roses way too much! But to sum up how they make me feel - they make me smile and feel happy!

If you love flowers as much as I do (or even if you don't), buy some! Try it :) You don't even need a big bouquet, just anything simple will do! I personally prefer simpler things (and flowers) rather than a lot of clutter. You never need too much to be able to express yourself. I think I am going to get some daffodils soon as I've seen them around, and they remind me of spring :)

You don't even need to invest in a vase if you don't want to - just use a glass :) Make sure you cut off the stems at the bottom diagonally and add plant food (but that normally comes with the bouquet) to make them last longer. Keep the water topped up throughout. Cut off any excess leaves as sometimes there can be loads! And be careful not to prick yourself on the sharp thorns that some roses have! I'm guilty of doing that (ouch!)

Lots of floral love,
Ayesha xxx

23 February 2015

Benefit Roller Lash mascara

Hey lovely people!

So I'm here with another mascara review! Benefit's newest mascara is 'Roller Lash' which promises to curl and lift lashes. I will be honest, when I took out the brush I was instantly disappointed. The brush to me looks like it would not work very well, and would be hard to use. I don't gravitate towards small plastic brushes. So, naturally I had low expectations. However, when I used it I was pleasantly surprised! It actually worked really well! I still don't particularly favour the brush, but it's not as difficult to use as I imagined.

Although, applying too much or too many coats does make it clump. The mascara curls and lifts lashes well, but it does not do a good job of separating lashes. It can also make lashes feel a little stiff too. I found this to be a little difficult to remove too, which can be irritating for the eyes. 

A good mascara is one of my makeup bag staples, and I find it difficult to find mascara's that give really great results. I would rate this 7.5/10.

Once again I haven't done anything to my lashes apart from put on the mascara.

Would I buy this again? Probably not. Why? Because my Too Faced Better Than Sex mascara is much much better than this (I would rate it 9/10). Roller Lash is really good, but I wouldn't choose it over BTS. Especially as they are priced similarly - Roller Lash is £19.50 for 8.5g (I have only got the travel size which is 3g). You can buy this here.

Have you used any of Benefit's mascara's? Is there any other mascara you would recommend? Let me know!

Stay happy!
Ayesha xxx

27 January 2015

That morning run!

Hello gorgeous people!

First of all.. Happy New Year! Sorry for being.. erm invisible.. I was.. you know.. studying for my (ridiculously difficult) Master's degree :P Exams are over so yay! But assignments are already there haha booo :(

I went for a morning run today, for the first time ever.. and it was awesome! I am actually still pumped with adrenaline and this is a very spontaneous post. Haha. It feels so good to get up early and get your heart racing.. releasing those endorphins making you feel stress free and happy. It was just the best wakeup call I needed as I've been pretty stressed lately.

As most people, one thing I want to do in 2015 is to be more healthy and fit. I'm not going to go to extreme lengths to do this, just simple adjustments. Like eating more healthy, reducing the amount of unhealthy food (not cutting it out completely though) and being more active!

I think being spontaneous can really help - I rang my friend randomly last night and told her we are going running in the morning at 8am. If I hadn't done that, I know for sure I would probably still be in bed being lazy. Now that we went and enjoyed it, it gave us a motivation boost and we have now planned to do this every week!

So if you feel like doing something, don't overthink it, just do it. Make plans and just go ahead. Just take each day as it comes, you don't always need to have a routine or order (although a routine is great). Sometimes you need a spontaneous moment to get you ready for a routine (like I did!)

This also allowed me to explore other parts of Manchester that I have never been to before. It was cold and tiring to get out of bed, but once we were out, it was great!

Stay happy and healthy!
Ayesha xxx