Saturday, 27 May 2017

My May Music Favourites!

This month I've been listening to so much music but a few songs have been on repeat every day, I am very music oriented and cannot go a day without listening to SOMETHING! So, this month I wanted to share the top tunes I've been jamming to:

Nicki Minaj - Truffle Butter
This song is a so good for just dancing along to whether its at a party, in a club or just at home this one gets me busting out those white girl moves. I love Nicki Minaj's music and the Pinkprint is definitely an album I would recommend for the amount of bops in there.

Bon Appetit - Katy Perry
I hear this on the radio ALL.THE.TIME! At first I wasn't keen and I thought it was a bit repetitive but after listening to it properly I actually started liking it and its become a song I always have on. I don't mind as much when the radio has this on like six times a day now!

Greedy - Ariana Grande
Ariana has an amazing voice and this song is one of my favourites from her Dangerous Woman album, however I do cringe when I hear it due to the events on Rupauls Drag Race (I still miss Valentina) but nevertheless its a great song to pop on while you clean, cook or just fancy a singalong.

Swish Swish - Katy Perry ft. Nicki Minaj
"Swish swish bish" has become my new catchphrase and I love the beat of this song so much, not keen on the beginning but once it kicks in its pretty damn good! Some say this is a Taylor Swift diss track and maybe it is but I don't pay attention to that nonsense I just love a good bop. 

The Cure - Lady Gaga
Gaga is my fave and if you know me you know I adore her, and this song is just so catchy I definitely love this one. Its thought that this was written for her friend Sonja who recently passed away due to cancer and that made me tear up, but the song itself has a really empowering, positive message that I love.

These are just some of the songs that have been on repeat throughout the entirety of May, I've been on a female artist kick and I love it! Are any of these your favourites too? Let me know in the comments!

Itsallzara

Wednesday, 24 May 2017

An Open Letter To The Manchester Attack Victims

I wanted to write something to express my sorrow and utter disbelief at the level of evil shown in recent events, I also wanted to share my thoughts regarding those injured or even killed in the Manchester attack this week. Here is an open letter to the victims;

Dear Manchester victims,
No one deserves to feel what you felt, see what you saw or experience what you experienced, those of you who are alive and safe I am delighted that you made it out the other side. But that doesn't take away the fact that some of you may never go to another concert again, some may not feel comfortable leaving your home for quite some time and some may now find large crowds too unbearable to witness. I saw the footage of the arena being attacked and I heard the screams of young girls, children and parents, I heard the sobs of the wounded, saw the blood of the murdered and witnessed the devastation of people finding out their loved ones were hurt or worse. Despite hearing and seeing all this it cannot compare to what you must have felt or are feeling now, I am due to go to my own concert at Manchester arena in October to see my idol Lady Gaga and this weeks experience has put the fear in my heart that what happened this week could happen again. We as a species should never put one another through what happened in Manchester this week and to say I am angry, hurt and disgusted is such an understatement, its almost a joke. Yesterday I watched endless people RTing tweets and posting online to find their missing loved ones and I felt useless, I wanted to help so much but all I could do was offer to be there for anyone who needed to talk or needed information regarding where to call to find missing people. This post is in memory of the following people who lost their lives;

 15 year old Olivia Campbell
8 year old Saffie-Rose Roussos
26 year old John Atkinson
32 year old Kelly Brewster
42 year old Martin Klis, and his wife 40 year old Angelika Klis
50 year old Jane Tweddle-Taylor
29 year old Martyn Hett
14 year old Nell Jones
Michelle Kiss (age unkown)
45 year old Alison Howe
47 year old Lisa Lees
18 year old Georgina Callander
& to those who were damaged physically, emotionally and mentally.

My condolences to the family, friends and partners of these people. I wish the survivors a time of safety, peace and love for the rest of your lives.

To Ariana Grande please don't blame yourself, you put on a fantastic show and made these people extremely happy. Someone else took that happiness away but it wasn't you, my thoughts go out to you as well.

From, a 21 year old girl just wishing for a kinder world.


Saturday, 20 May 2017

Let's Talk - Summer!

Hi all! Welcome to another edition of Let's Talk, last week I was super busy and I totally didn't have time to arrange a few guest bloggers to write for me so there was no post but the topic in question will be done sure!

THIS week, its just me writing because I wanted to share my excitement for the upcoming summer and my plans for when I finish college. Summer is my favourite time of the year because the sun, the warmth, the freedom to do what I want and the overall chilled out feeling is what I LIVE for. Now I have around a month or so before college finishes and I'm free until September so up until then I'll be working like a little bee.

Once that's over I can begin my summer plans, so what DO I have planned?
A drawing I did in the sand in Italy 2015
Well one of the things I'd love to do is visit the beach with my family, maybe take a little picnic with me and enjoy the sun. I love the seaside because the air is so fresh, its usually sunny and I always took amazing photos! While there I want to look in antique shops, take my dog Dean for a walk along the strip and visit my favourite seaside market located in Cleethorpes that always have some amazing and unusual stuff, there's even a stand that make jewellery out of your favourite bands. I also want to walk along the sand with my shoes off just to feel the beach beneath my feet, although if my local beach is anything to go by I'll also end up with glass and bottle caps in there.
Daisy chain!
I also want to do plenty of sunbathing and relaxing, god knows I need some colour and since I won't be going abroad again this year this is the way to get it! Fingers crossed a lovely summer this year! I have a back up plan of investing in some fake tan though in case the sun flakes out on me, which I'm hoping won't happen. My back garden is my main chill out spot for the sun so I'm hoping to maybe pitch a little tent to camp in, maybe dine outside (no bugs invited) and share some wine with my mum while we catch some rays, this would be absolutely perfect for me and if we get the weather for it I'm doing it!
Getting into shape is a huge plan of mine because I won't have college so I can make a timetable for myself for swimming and going to the gym. Hopefully I can lose some weight over the summer, I will be keeping a fitness diary updated every week with my progress, my meals and my workout plan for any of you gym bunnies interested. I'll also be updating my blog with any new vegan foods I find since that is what I'm aiming to transition to, food is a huge part of weight loss and muscle gain so I need to concentrate on eating the right foods and avoiding junk! 

All of these things are what's exciting me about the upcoming summer time and I cannot wait to be done with college so I can get started! Do you have any amazing summer plans? Let me know below!

Itsallzara

Friday, 19 May 2017

How I Got Over My First Heartbreak.

At 21 years old its a rather large possibility that I've had at least one relationship, this doesn't speak for everyone but it does for a lot of people; me being one of them. I had a few crushes in school, a couple of odd kisses with boys I liked and even gave a valentines day card or two, nothing was serious or devastating when we inevitably drifted apart and I remained pretty much emotionally in tact. This was until I joined college and met a group of friends I thought were my "ride or dies" (I was wrong naturally) and got introduced to the guy who would be the first person to break my heart. I was still super shy so I was awkward and quiet around him but I remember us hanging out for a day or and talking which was actually the day he asked me out.
We dated for almost a year and endured a lot of drama because he was the kind of person to pick fights with people and be aggressive which naturally lowered his popularity and he hated me talking to anyone who disliked him. We had arguments, we had days where we wouldn't speak (mostly because he ignored me) and in 2013 he ended the relationship after ignoring me for a good two days, bearing in mind he had just stayed at my house for a few days so I was HELLA confused. This began the utter misery that was my summer four years ago, and it was a hell of a rough time for myself.
I cried myself to sleep, I checked my phone every two minutes and when he was already dating someone else after two weeks of us being broken up I was devastated. I also heard he was running me down behind my back and was telling his friends my secrets, to be honest I look back and I'm happy we broke up because he was just an awful person and I didn't deserve that. Fast forward to the end of summer when college began again, I was still miserable about him dumping me and seeing him for another year did not help. But towards the end of our second year I began to feel less upset and more pissed off, because how dare he treat me like that!
After the anger subsided came the pep talks I gave myself, the new haircut I got to spruce myself up and the diet that helped me lose weight and feel amazing again. Once I had a new image and some new found confidence I gave him one last piece of my time so I could tell him what I thought of him and then walked away. I won't lie it was bloody hard, that summer was the worst of my life and I never want to feel that again, EVER!
Relationships can hurt, especially when they end but you can get over it and find yourself again. I'm glad I dated such a lowlife because it makes me appreciate good people now, so thank you to the man who broke my heart because I have a much better person in my life now!
Itsallzara


Tuesday, 16 May 2017

Trying Vegan Chocolate

Hello all! Welcome to another itsallzara post, today I tried vegan chocolate for the first time and I'm super excited to share my thoughts about it.

I looooooove chocolate as many people do, but obviously I'm attempting to transition to veganism so I definitely went on the hunt for vegan chocolate to enjoy.

These products are by Tesco and they were relatively cheap! Tesco are currently doing a 3 for 2 on their free from stuff which is great because they do:
Gluten Free
Wheat Free
Dairy Free
Lactose Free
&
Soy Free

I was quite happy to read on the back of the label that the products were suitable for vegans as well as vegetarians and I picked up 3 of each products.

The first thing I got were 3 of these chocolate bars that were 45p each but 3 for 2 meant I could get 3 for just 90p! That's pretty good in my opinion especially as some people think vegan foods are all expensive.

The chocolate itself tastes like dark chocolate which I like anyway so this wasn't a huge change to my taste buds. Obviously without milk its a little less sweeter than normal chocolate but I think a little less sugar isn't an issue when you think about how much sugar is actually in a lot of foods.

I also got three bags of these little buttons which were 40p each but with the 3 for 2 offer I got 3 bags for 80p. Again the sugars and fats are a little high but each bag is only 25g so it's not something you can eat mass amounts of. They also taste like dark chocolate and are actually lovely, I definitely don't miss the extra sugar in regular chocolate when eating them.

I think overall these are super nice, they're definitely worth the money and its a great way for vegans (especially children) to enjoy chocolate without worrying about added dairy, gluten or wheat! Will be buying them again when I've gotten through them all for sure.

If you're interested in vegetarian food, vegan foods or how to cut meat and dairy out your diet you can tweet me on Twitter at @itsallzara or email me at zaraanne@hotmail.co.uk!

Itsallzara

Wednesday, 10 May 2017

Review - Lush Rosy Cheeks Face Mask

Hello readers! So today I dropped off a CV and an application form for my local Lush store as they are moving to a much bigger store and need staff! Fingers crossed for me and all that, BUT while I was there I picked up a new face mask purely to try and review for you lovely Lush fans and readers out there. I've already applied it and worn it for a good fifteen minutes and washed it off so I can give you a good before and after account. My skin today has been rather oily and nothing special despite exposing it to some good ol' sunshine, but after this mask I feel so refreshed!

This is the product itself, and it gives a little intro to the mask itself and even mentions the soothing nature of the calamine powder and calming effects. As on all Lush face masks there is a little section that states that if you bring back 5 empty and clean tubs you get a free face mask! I love that Lush do this because its a great way of encouraging recycling, because who doesn't want free stuff??
This is the colour and texture of the mask, a gorgeous little pinkish colour which instantly fits the rosy theme they have going on. I added a few white rose petals to the background to give it that extra cute look! The smell of this one is super pleasant and it definitely has a rose scent to it which some would love, others may not. 

All in all this mask made my skin extremely smooth, removed the excess oil that was giving me a shiny look and removed any redness I had due to lasting blemishes. This one gets a 10/10 from me! If you're interested in buying this product just pop into your local Lush store and nab one or visit their website to order one!

Warning: This product needs to be kept in a fridge to maintain a cool and firm texture.

Itsallzara

Sunday, 7 May 2017

My First Vegetarian Nandos!

Hello readers! So as some of you may remember I recently reviewed my first ever vegetarian Pizza Hut experience (for those who missed it you can find it HERE) and today I will be reviewing my first vegetarian meal from Nandos in Princes Quay - Hull!
Nandos is a favourite of mine when it comes to food because their food is amazing, their restaurants are always clean and well decorated and they always have fantastic customer service. This time was no different despite my change in meal choice. Me and Craig were both seated by a window which gave a lovely view of the water that Princes Quay have surrounding their shopping centre, it helped that it was a sunny day as what we could see of outside looked fabulous in the sunshine.
We started our meal with a plate of their roasted pitta bread and hummus with chilli oil drizzle:
As a lover of hummus and pitta bread as a combination this went down very well with me, Craig however isn't as keen on hummus but enjoyed the chilli oil and pitta bread immensely. One day I'll convert him to the hummus side but as of yet its all mine (which isn't really a bad thing!)
After this we ordered our main meal, which was the veggie burger with medium spice, a side of Peri chips and corn for me and Peri chips and rice for Craig:
I personally adore Peri chips from Nandos, they're that nice I would eat just a plate of those and some sauce! Nonetheless the veggie burger we tried was simply exquisite, it was the right amount of juicy without being greasy or watery and had the rather soft complexion that you would expect from a burger. The salad served with the burger was fresh and crisps which gave the meal a refreshing sort of taste that one can appreciate. Unfortunately I didn't snap a pic of my corn because it was still being cooked and I was too starving to wait, someone should teach me patience!
 This is a closer look at Craig's meal, with the same burger and chips just a side of rice where my corn should be. He also enjoyed the meal and was impressed by how lovely a vegetarian burger can be when he's used to the real thing. All in all we both appreciated Nando's vegetarian cuisine and the customer service was (as always) impeccable.
I will probably do further reviews of the veggie meals I try from food places in the future, but until then farewell!
Itsallzara


Saturday, 6 May 2017

Let's Talk - Music

It is time for ANOTHER Let's Talk post and this time we are discussing Music! Here are the links to my previous Let's Talks so far:
On this weeks post I have some fabulous guest writers joining me giving me the rundown of their music faves, so give it up for:

@ChelseaAnn1996 from https://www.thinkfeelstrong.com/
@PortysDiary from http://portysdiary.blogspot.co.uk/
@Mchispeaks from http://blog.mchiouji.me/

I'm so pleased to have these three writing for me this week, here are their thoughts on Music:


Chelsea's thoughts: "Music is my favorite thing in the world, it's always playing, literally. Whether I'm in my room, car, or at the gym. Especially at the gym. Music has such a power, it can relax you, it can uplift you, and help you kickass when you're in workout! I think it's such a wonderful thing and there's always new songs or artists to discover!

Spotify has been the greatest discovery for me with my love for music. Unlimited music, for such a discounted price of $5 a month for being a student, I love it so much. My music taste are always changing, I listen to quite a variety of artists and genres, but my absolute favorites at the moment have to be, Talk by Salvatore Ganacci, I Wonder by The Him, and Pill by Heuse. Try the last song at the gym and thank me later!"

Barbara's thoughts: "Music is one of main passions; I can’t think of any day that I have not listen to it.
Sometimes it works as a motivator, as therapy, as an escape, or simply as a companion. Due to this, I listen and enjoy several genres. It all depends on the mood, the situation, the location, you name it.
There are some bands like UB40, INXS or even Gloria Estefan that automatically bring me back to my childhood and flashbacks invade my mind. This is something so remarkable that only music and food have this power, in my opinion.
My favorite genres would be Rock & Metal, but I also enjoy some good Pop, Hip-Hop, Classical and even House. Oh, let’s not forget the good old 80’s music! Love it!! Recently discovered Lounge to be the best blogging-friendly music.
But if there is on genre that I really dislike is Jazz… I can’t get it!
I love going to shows and festivals; there’s something so special about seeing your favorite artists on stage performing your favorite songs… I can’t really put it in words.
Some shows have a special spot in my heart with lovely memories, such as: watching my favorite band for the first time; witness the perfect blend between metal and classical music on stage, in front of more than 4k people from all over the World; watching a choir and orchestra playing one of my favorite pieces from Mozart. The memories are endless…
Music has allowed me to meet people from various parts of the World, and all because we share this same passion! It’s fantastic and I am forever grateful for that!
As an emigrant, I started to appreciate more and more, music that has influences from my home country; it makes the distance shorter and warms up my heart.
My favorite bands/artists are: Evanescence, Epica, Bon Jovi, Madonna, Prince, Moonspell, Metallica, Insomnium, Eminem, Adele, and so on….

I want to thank Zara for coming up with this lovely topic and let me be part of it!"

Mchi's thoughts: "Hello, lovelies! ♡ I'm Mchi from mchiblogs* and I’ve realised that when it comes to chatting music, I’m rubbish at it. But wait a moment, hear me out. I’m the type of person that can’t just chat about music, I have to rant and rave about it. Seeing as I don’t want to be that guy that takes up more space than other lovely people that have also chatted about something, I’m going to instead chat about something that I feel everyone should know a little bit more about.
Bandcamp.
But what is Bandcamp? You may be asking as I spout out this seemingly random two-word bit of confusion. Well, according to their Wikipedia page, Bandcamp is a private company that allows for music streaming and purchasing to be done. In my words, Bandcamp is a place where you can find some of the most intriguing collection of music—and in this case, intriguing can be both good or bad—and some equally as intriguing artists and creators.
It’s similar to SoundCloud in that a lot of artists found there are of the indie spectrum or on a label that isn’t major. What sets it apart from SoundCloud is how intricate their system is and how organised everything. For a site that hosts quite a lot of music—and trust me, I’ve spent a lot of hours scrolling through a single tag* and still hadn’t reached the end—their site is incredibly easy to use and navigate.
Some releases on the site are free and some costs a bit to own, but streaming is always free. Regardless, there’s something for everyone.
So why is it that I wanted to chat about Bandcamp?
The real question is why not chat about Bandcamp? I think in a world where music can get a bit repetitive and artists are constantly overlooked or just don’t get to reach the potential they probably deserve to reach, places like—especially like—Bandcamp bridge that gap.
The allow for artists to be artists and create the works of art they should be making in a place where there is far more of a chance for their talents to be seen and received.
So when you’re searching for music, give Bandcamp a chance. (They also have a blog now. I completely recommend.)"

My thoughts: Ahh music, the thing that keeps me sane. I'm currently listening to music while I write this so lets see how many words I can type before stopping to dance shall we? Anyway, the picture on the left is me taken with my favourite band Asking Alexandria, unfortunately Denis Stoff who was the bands vocalist at the time was absent but James, Ben, Cameron and Sam were all soooo sweet! I have a signed autograph from all of them. But apart from them I have one person in particular who is my total idol, one....Lady to be exact, yes thats right it is Lady Gaga! I'm sure those of you who know me well aren't surprised by this but yes she is my absolute fave. Her music and the whole Born This Way era helped me through so much, and her ARTPOP era helped me find the fun in my life during hard times. Her current Joanne era is a big help too as her music just makes me so happy. I use music as a way of relaxing, feeling confident, letting my insecurities go and have fun and I'm very thankful that I'm existing the same time as someone like Lady Gaga! I'm seeing her this October for the second time so be ready for MANY fangirling blog posts.

Do you have a favourite artists, band, music type or music related story? Share them in the comments below!

Itsallzara

Friday, 5 May 2017

My Lush Bubble Bar Faves!

As a lover of Lush I wanted to do a post based on my favourite bubble bars that I use or buy on a frequent basis, most of these are seasonal ones which are only available for a certain time period but one of the reasons I love them so much is their exclusivity and the excitement of being able to buy them again. I haven't actually been to lush in a while BUUUUUUT I have many bubble bars and soaps saved from my visits earlier this year.
So here are a few of my bubble bar faves;
This is The Christmas Penguin bubble bar and it is ADORABLE! Mines a bit worn and stained due to being in my box since December and I've kept him this long because hes too cute to use! I love this one because of how creamy and soft the bubbles are when you run it under the tap, it really adds to a relaxing atmosphere where you can chill out.
This is the Unicorn Horn bubble bar and I actually did review this one a while back, you can find that post HERE. Adding to this review it is one of my favourite because of its color, fun shape and the fact that its unicorn related is a bonus! Definitely a fun little bubble bar to have in your collection and it doubles up as a pretty little bathroom ornament.
This is the Magic Of Christmas bubble bar wand and the reason this is one of my favourites is actually the scent more so than the looks of it. I love the whole clove and cinnamon scent and when this is used you get immediately transported to the land of Christmas, winter, snow and sitting by a warm fire. The glitter on this is so pretty as well and I love the little ribbon!
This is the Ladybird bubble bar which is one of my favourites because it is so sweet and its about on par with the Penguin bubble bar due to the sweet little animal design. This one gives off purple water and fluffy bubbles that smell like Vimto (its a soda) which is fun!

Like Lush? Leave a comment telling me your favourite Lush products!

Itsallzara

Sunday, 30 April 2017

My First Vegetarian Pizza Hut Experience!

Last night after a long day of shopping I decided to treat me and Craig to some dinner at Pizza Hut, which would be our first time visiting as vegetarians. First of all I want to commend Scunthorpe's store for its excellent customer service, the staff were lovely and one girl in particular who served us was so sweet I gave her a special tip to show appreciation. Now, onto the food!

We started off with some cheesy garlic bread and jalapeno poppers to keep us going before the main course and they were delicious!
As a lover of spicy foods the jalapeno poppers were not a let down! And I love cheesy bread so the garlic bread was just perfect, both sides were in the right amount to keep our hunger at bay and prep our tastebuds for our pizza extravaganza! We decided on a half and half pizza to sample two different flavours and here is what we received:
How amazing does that look?! We chose a cheesy bite crust because like I said, we love cheesy bread. One side of the pizza was "Veggie Heaven" which was goats cheese, rocket salad, olive and tomato, the other was "Veggie Hot One" which consisted of green chillis, tomatoes and peppers. Both were fabulous and I enjoyed every bite, although due to the sides we got full rather quickly and only ended up finishing half of the pizzza.
We took the rest home for my mother and while she isn't a vegetarian she loved what we brought for her. All in all it was a very good experience and we felt very welcome with the amazing service and delicious food, I can see us returning again!

Itsallzara